The Pigeon Tunnel

the pigeon tunnelNot my usual sort of fare, but I quite enjoyed reading John le Carré’s book The Pigeon Tunnel, a collection of stories and reflections on the events of his life, and particularly those that inspired his books, some of which I have read an enjoyed.

The story behind the book’s title is typically interesting and disturbing, but I won’t steal the author’s thunder by recounting it here. In fact I found the book itself somewhat disturbing, in that it casts light on the murky world of spies and intelligence that lie in the shadows of the political world where we are only usually aware of surface events.

The content ranges through the story of the people on whom were based some of the main characters in le Carré’s fiction, his experience of spying and the impact on political events, insight into some of the major UK traitors including Kim Philby and George Blake, and fascinating background on some of the main characters and events of the politics of his time, including Gorbachev/Yeltsin/Putin, Arafat and several British prime ministers.

Altogether a fascinating read.