The Secret Pilgrim
, by John le Carré
The Cold War is over, and Ned is about to retire from the secret service, where his final post has been to train new recruits. Before he goes he invites his old boss George Smiley to speak at a dinner at Sarratt, the service's training ground. As Smiley talks, he prompts Ned to reflect on his own career, in a series of anecdotes which are by turns unhappy, comic, depressing and exciting, but all of them poignant.
Travels With My Aunt
, by Graham Greene.
Retired bank manager Henry Pulling is possibly the most boring man on Earth, whose only interest in life is tending to his dahlias. Then, at his mother's funeral, he meets his eccentric Aunt Augusta. Almost immediately, his humdrum existence is upset when the police confiscate his mother's ashes, after his aunt's friend adds cannabis leaves to the urn. Things only get stranger (and funnier), however, as Henry goes with his aunt to Brighton, Paris and Istanbul.