One of Britain's best known authors John le Carre has died at the age of 89.
The spy-turned-novelist defined the Cold War espionage thriller and brought him much acclaim.
In classics such as ``The Spy Who Came in from the Cold,'' ``Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy'' and ``The Honourable Schoolboy,'' Le Carre combined terse prose with the kind of complexity expected in literary fiction.
His books grappled with betrayal, moral compromise and the psychological toll of a secret life.
In the quiet, watchful spymaster George Smiley, he created one of 20th-century fiction's iconic characters - a decent man at the heart of a web of deceit.
Several of Le Carré's 25 works were turned into films including The Constant Gardener, and Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, while the Night Manager became a successful television series.
Paying tribute to le Carré, author Stephen King said in a tweet: "This terrible year has claimed a literary giant and a humanitarian spirit."
Le Carré died in Cornwall, southwest England on Saturday after a short illness not said to have been related to COVID-19.