Friday, February 28, 2014

Top ten Berliners in literature

Rory MacLean's newest book is Berlin: Portrait of a City Through the Centuries.

One of his top ten Berliners in literature, as shared at the Guardian:
Alec Leamas in The Spy Who Came in from the Cold by John le Carré

John le Carré's first sight of the Berlin Wall filled him with disgust and outrage, inspiring him to write his seminal book in five intense weeks. Spies were vain fools, traitors, "pansies, sadists and drunkards, people who play cowboys and Indians to brighten their rotten lives," he wrote. Through Alec Leamas, the novel's antihero, he too helped to transform the city, weaving further intricacy into its mythology, freezing in time a place both perilous and clandestine: black winter canals, deep dark shadows, and the "weasel faces of the brainwashed little thugs who guarded the Kremlin's latest battlement".
Read about the other entries on the list. 

The Spy Who Came in from the Cold is among Louise Doughty's ten best courtroom dramas, Jon Stock's top ten John le Carré novels, the Barnes & Noble Review's list of five top books on The Cold War, Charles Cumming's best books, and Keith Jeffery's five best books about Britain's Secret Service.

--Marshal Zeringue