(hb; 1962, 1963: second novel in the George Smiley series)
From the inside flap:
"George Smiley reveals that behind his 'breathtakingly ordinary' exterior there lies a razor-sharp mind as he tackles this bizarre case: a murder has taken place in one of England's leading public schools - a murder that was forecast by the victim."
Smiley, clever as ever, puzzles out the vicious murder of an unpopular woman in a stuffy British school where gossip and hinted-at resentments run unchecked.
Chatty, sometimes frustrating, lead-up - given its milieu and characters, it's appropriate - with a stunning, sly wrap-up.
Worthwhile read, if you don't mind characters who are full of themselves, and hung up on rigid class distinctions.
Followed, in a loosely-connected fashion, by Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, the first novel of the Karla Trilogy.