Monday, January 11, 2010

Book 53: The Bourne Ultimatum by Robert Ludlum

Title: The Bourne Ultimatum by Robert Ludlum

Pages: 662

How it was obtained: I bought it at Borders I think.

Time spent on the "to read" shelf: 5 years.

Days spent reading it: 8 days.

Why I read it: To finish off the Jason Bourne trilogy by Robert Ludlum of course!

Brief review: This final book in the Jason Bourne trilogy was what I guess I hoped the second book would have been. I enjoyed this last installment, but still spent most of my time scratching my head. Here are a few things I liked and did not like.

Liked: The final show down between Jason Bourne and The Jackal. This makes the book great. It is too bad that it happens as these two assassins are getting old and losing their skills. But the constant cat and mouse plays in this final installment were great. Finally Bourne is matched against someone who is a worthy adversary.

I also liked the fact that Jason Bourne is older. He makes mistakes. Sometimes really bad ones, and that adds to the credibility of this crazy adventure. Although the invincible Jason Bourne from the first two novels has disappeared, this weary Jason Bourne is a good character.

My favorite part of this book? Jason Bourne getting shot in the neck! That was awesome.

Did not like: Ludlum writes in cryptic phrases and has cryptic characters, this makes it difficult to follow the bigger picture sometimes. In this particular installment it seemed to happen more than in previous novels. I wish Ludlum would clarify what the heck is going on in many scenes.

I did not care for the secondary plot in this book either. I found it confusing most of the time, irritating some of the time, and had no real idea how it all tied together by the end of the book. This goes back to my other complaint of an excessively cryptic plot.

I would recommend this book to anyone who started their journey with Jason Bourne and would like to finish it. This book was superior to the Bourne Supremacy and reminded me of why I liked the Bourne series in the first place. Frankly, you could read the Bourne Identity and skip straight to this book and not miss much. The events in the second novel are rarely mentioned and add almost nothing to the plot (unlike the first novel which is frequently referred back to for the plot). The Bourne Ultimatum is a worthy final book in this series, and a definite for fans of Jason Bourne.

Favorite quote: "Why do you have to use a dozen words when one will suffice?" 
"Because I'm supposed to be a scholar. We academicians never take a direct route because it doesn't leave us any offshoots to claim if we're wrong. What are you, anti-intellectual?"

Stars: 3.5 out of 5

Final Word: Ultimate!

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