17: John Le Carre talk in London – Field Report

An Evening with John Le Carre

John Le Carre

John Le Carre gave a rousing talk and answered questions at the Royal Festival Hall, London. Spybrary Podcast was there and we bring you this first ever field report.

John Le Carre at the Royal Festival Hall London
John Le Carre at the Royal Festival Hall London -yes Spybrary Host Shane Whaley took this photo from the front row. Photography was forbidden so excuse the poor quality as it was a rushed shot!

Billed as ‘An Evening with George Smiley‘ John Le Carre packed out the Royal Festival Hall and his talk was beamed live to many cinemas across the UK and Europe.

‘In this one-off event, the author discussed the full breadth of his career, and reflected on the continuing story of his most famous creation, German literature loving bespectacled spy, George Smiley.


Coinciding with the publication date of his new novel, A Legacy of Spies, the novel sees the return of some of le Carré’s most iconic Cold War characters. Including George Smiley and his trusted lieutenant, Peter Guillam, as their past comes back to claim them in the present. In a rare question and answer session with Jon Snow, this event gave attendees an unmissable opportunity to experience one of the foremost chroniclers of our age, direct and in his own words.'

Spybrary host Shane Whaley flew in from Vermont to attend and interviewed several Spybrarians straight after the event. Listen to Episode 17 of the Spybrary Podcast and hear what the following listeners, a pot pourri of spy fans thought of this very rare John Le Carre event. This is Legacy of Spies spoiler free, we just chatted about his talk rather than the book which only came out that day. We intend on releasing a panel discussing on A Legacy of Spies in the coming weeks, I think some of us need to read it twice 🙂

Jeff Quest (Spywrite)
Tim Stevens (Author of Ratcatcher this is on Shane's September reading list.)
Tibor Ipacs
Gary Dexter
Clarissa Aykroyd
Alice Dryden (Huskyteer)
Hannah (Mrs Simon Templar)

This is the first ever field report on Spybrary, the audio may be lacking in places as I get to grip with my recording gadgets. As far as I can tell these were the only interviews (certainly on a podcast) from the John Le Carre event at Royal Festival Hotel so please enjoy and remember Spybrary is by spy fans for spy fans!

Dads Army clip – The actor in the glasses, Arthur Lowe is the chap we refer to. He was screen tested for the role of George Smiley but failed because he is so typecast as the Home Guard captain Capt Mainwaring. (Victim of his own success.)

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Spybrary Spy Podcast Discussion Group
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