George Smiley appears again in John le Carré’s second novel. This time he does a favor for an old friend and travels to a private school that sounds like Eton. The wife of a faculty member has written a letter stating that her husband plans to kill her. By the time Smiley arrives, she’s already dead. It’s not an espionage story, just a typical English murder mystery.
A Murder of Quality is worth reading for le Carre’s excellent prose and for his depiction of the mostly upper-class inhabitants of the school. My favorite part, however, was being able to spend time with the wonderful character of George Smiley. Whenever he spoke, I could almost hear the voice of Alec Guinness.