The Constant Gardener

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The Constant Gardener

Format:  Paperback,

560 pages

Publisher: Pocket Books

Publish Date: Jul 2005

ISBN-13: 9781416503903

ISBN-10: 1416503900

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The following content was provided by the publisher.
THE CONSTANT GARDENER
Tessa Quayle--young, beautiful, and dearly beloved to husband Justin--is gruesomely murdered in northern Kenya. When Justin sets out on a personal odyssey to uncover the mystery of her death, what he finds could make him not only a suspect, but also a target for Tessa's killers.
A master chronicler of the betrayals of ordinary people caught in political conflict, John le Carre portrays the dark side of unbridled capitalism as only he can. In The Constant Gardener he tells a compelling, complex story of a man elevated through tragedy, as Justin Quayle--amateur gardener, aging widower, and ineffectual bureaucrat--discovers his own natural resources and the extraordinary courage of the woman he barely had time to love.

Specifications

Publisher: Pocket Books
Publish Date: Jul 2005
ISBN-13: 9781416503903
ISBN-10: 1416503900
Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 560
Shipping Weight (in pounds): 0.6
Product in Inches (L x W x H): 4.5 x 7.0 x 1.75
Walmart No.: 1416503900

About the author

Biography of Le Carr, John

David John Moore Cornwell writes bestselling espionage thrillers under the pseudonym John le Carr. The pseudonym was necessary when he began writing, in the early 1960s because, at that time, he held a diplomatic position with the British Foreign Office and was not allowed to publish under his own name. Originally inspired to write intrigue because of a 1950s scandal that revealed several highly placed members of the British Foreign Office and Secret Service to be Soviet agents, or "moles", the plots of most of le Carr's books revolve around Cold War espionage.

His own position with the Foreign Office, as well as his earlier service with the British Army Intelligence Corps, gave him an intimate knowledge of Britain's espionage bureaucracy and of Cold War politics. When his third book, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, became a worldwide bestseller in 1964, le Carr left the foreign service to write full time. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, which was also adapted to film, featured spy master George Smiley, who was introduced in le Carr's first book, Call for the Dead (published in the U.S. as The Deadly Affair) and also appears in A Murder of Quality; Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy; The Honourable Schoolboy; and Smiley's People.

Le Carr has received numerous awards for his writing, including the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America (1986), and the Diamond Dagger from the Crime Writers Association (1988). In addition to The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, several of his other books have been adapted for television and motion pictures, including The Russia House, a 1990 film starring Sean Connery and Michelle Pfeiffer, and 2005's The Constant Gardener. Le Carr was born in Poole, Dorsetshire, England in 1931. He attended Bern University in Switzerland from 1948-49 and later completed a B.A. at Lincoln College, Oxford. He taught at Eton from 1956-58 and was a member of the British Foreign Service from 1959 to 1964.

Reviews

Review by Library Journal (2001-05-15)

To be fair, abridging le Carr? must be very difficult, since his books depend so much on character and plot built up over many pages. This problem pretty much sinks The Constant Gardener. Justin Quayle, a British diplomat in Kenya whose pretty young wife has been murdered, tries to make sense of the atrocity. Many of the large cast get reduced to names without faces. The story is compressed to pretty much a linear narrative, leaving the listener wondering why it takes so long to figure the characters out.

All but the briefest reference to Quayle's gardening gets omitted, rendering the very title a cipher. Though le Carr? remains a fine writer, and proves more than competent as a reader, this program cannot be recommended. Happily, The Tailor of Panama, a shorter, more straightforward, and often more lighthearted book, fares better. British intelligence, at a loss about the impending transfer of the Panama canal to Panama, recruits humble tailor Harry Pendel as a spy. The money's good, and Harry's glad to oblige. Trouble is, he's more than a bit of a fraud. This one is a keeper.

- John Hiett, Iowa City P.L.

(c). Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Review by Library Journal (2000-12-01)

Tessa Quayle, a beautiful young lawyer, is posted to Nairobi as the wife of British diplomat Justin Quayle. In the course of the voluntary work in which she becomes involved, she uncovers a trail of intentional malfeasance by the vast pharmaceutical multinational KVH, which is fast-tracking a new TB drug using Africans as guinea pigs. She first calls on the British government to intervene and then decides to take her evidence to Richard Leakey.

Le Carr's latest novel opens with Tessa's being murdered on her way to Leakey. Tessa was accompanied by her friend Arnold Bluhm, whom the official investigation finds guilty of her murder. But Tessa's husband begins his own probe, following her trail of contacts around the world. Le Carr's ability to draw characters in depth, coupled with his unparalleled plotting and the authority with which he describes settings as various as Nairobi, Elba, Switzerland, and Canada, makes this a propulsive narrative and a lesson in the realities of a world run not by governments but by corporations. Highly recommended. DDavid Dodd, Marin Cty. Free Lib., San Rafael, CA

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Awards and Recognitions

  • Galaxy British Book Awards, 2006 (United Kingdom)

Book description

THE CONSTANT GARDENER

Tessa Quayle--young, beautiful, and dearly beloved to husband Justin--is gruesomely murdered in northern Kenya. When Justin sets out on a personal odyssey to uncover the mystery of her death, what he finds could make him not only a suspect, but also a target for Tessa's killers.

A master chronicler of the betrayals of ordinary people caught in political conflict, John le Carre portrays the dark side of unbridled capitalism as only he can. In The Constant Gardener he tells a compelling, complex story of a man elevated through tragedy, as Justin Quayle--amateur gardener, aging widower, and ineffectual bureaucrat--discovers his own natural resources and the extraordinary courage of the woman he barely had time to love.

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