‘The Night Manager’

(Book review)

A fool is someone who does not learn by experience.”

To be completely honest with you, if it wasnt for the book-based TV series starring Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Lorie I wouldnt read this book but here I am.

So, ‘The Night Manager’ is a novel, written by John le Carre in 1993 and telling us about ‘OMG’ the night manager Jonathan Pine, a former British soldier, who works in a hotel, lives as a recluse and cherishes his job.

Jonathan is hired by ex-SIS (Secret Intelligence Service) Chief Leonard Burr to go undercover into the social circle of Richard Roper, an arms trader, to reveal his shady deals. However, Jonathans way is rough. He needs to go through some transformation to gain Ropers trust. Will Jonathan be able to close up Ropers shop? Or will he become another Ropers puppet? Or maybe he even won`t survive in the end?

Sounds intriguing, right? But is it, though?

The main protagonist – Jonathan Pine – turned out to be very realistic. I really enjoyed book paragraphs, where the author gives a description of Jonathans thoughts, feelings, his attitude to things and simple his appearance, “<em>…itinerant chef hotelier, a collector of other peoples languages, a perpetual escapee from emotional entanglement, a self-exiled creature of the night, and a sailor without a destination.” The next thing I liked is Jonathans transformation. When he needed to create a legend for himself to enter Ropers circle, Jonathan does everything to appear as a man who doesn`t care much and ready to do everything to survive.

Guns have their own silence. It is the silence of the dead to come.”

Although the book itself is gripping, I got really bored while reading chapters where the author describes the work of secret services and its members. There were too many characters with similar responsibilities, so I gradually realized that I didn’t quite follow their actions. I was just flipping through pages to find chapters related to Jonathans mission…Also, I didnt like the ending. I mean it is not terrible, but I thought it would be different. There is neither a cliffhanger, no an ironic twist. The story feels finished but still I didn`t get a feeling of satisfaction.

I may have not said this often, yet, the TV adaptation is much better than the book. The best thing is that it gave me the ending I wanted to see in the book.

So, wrapping up everything I said, ‘The Night Manager’ isnt an easy read, it requires concentration and understanding of some events. If you dont like things related to spies, secret missions and arms trade, this book is a ‘Big No’ for you. However, it is not so bad and, definitely, it is not the worst book I have ever read but still it is not the best.

I give it 6 night managers out of 10 and strongly recommend you to watch the mini-series created by BBC.

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