David John Moore Cornwell, pen name John le Carré, is a British author of espionage novels. During the 1950s and the 1960s, Cornwell worked for the British intelligence services MI5 and MI6, when he began writing novels under a pen name. His third novel The Spy Who Came In from the Cold became an international best-seller, and remains one of his best-known works. Following the novel's success, he left MI6 to become a full-time author.
Le Carré has since established himself as an important writer of espionage fiction. In 1990, he received the Helmerich Award which is presented annually by the Tulsa Library Trust. In 2008, The Times ranked Le Carré 22nd on its list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945". In 2011, he won the Goethe Medal, a yearly prize given by the Goethe Institute.