The Bourne Identity

The Bourne Identity

Alternate cover for this ISBN can be found hereWho is Jason Bourne? Is he an assassin, a terrorist, a thief? Why has he got four million dollars in a Swiss bank account? Why has someone tried to murder him?...Jason Bourne does not know the answer to any of these questions. Suffering from amnesia, he does not even know that he is Jason Bourne. What manner of man is he? What...

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Title:The Bourne Identity
Author:Robert Ludlum
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Bourne Identity Reviews

  • Mike (the Paladin)

    First of all let me say...the recent movie with Matt Damon, I hated it. They butchered the story. I understand shortening for time (as in The Lord of the Rings) I understand combining characters...but why take a book's title then completely rewrite the story?

    I like this book and its sequels. I hate the movie and its sequels.

    Please try reading the books and finding out what the plot actually is. The book is well plotted, thought out, with complex characters. I believe you'll like it.

    A man wakes

    First of all let me say...the recent movie with Matt Damon, I hated it. They butchered the story. I understand shortening for time (as in The Lord of the Rings) I understand combining characters...but why take a book's title then completely rewrite the story?

    I like this book and its sequels. I hate the movie and its sequels.

    Please try reading the books and finding out what the plot actually is. The book is well plotted, thought out, with complex characters. I believe you'll like it.

    A man wakes up with amnesia...not a unique plot even then...and has to put together who he is and what's going on from few clues. This can be difficult in the best of times. If people are trying to kill you that can sometimes add to the...stress.

    Microfilm, competing assassins, double and triple identities and of course a love story. As noted, this is a great read and it's much better than the movie by the same name in my opinion. (Although back in 1988 there was a miniseries staring Richard Chamberlain and Jaclyn Smith that stayed very close to the book. The special effects are dated and so on, but it's better story-wise if you care to look it up.)

    If all you know about the

    is the Matt Damon movie you don't know the story. Really, do yourself a favor and read the novel.

  • Seth T.

    I loved the movie and heard that I the book was comparatively awesome. And it was.

    The thing is: I haven't the faintest idea how the movie came out of the book. Beyond the premise of a man fished from the sea with no memory but incredible ingrained abilities and talents that make it look like he's really probably and assassin with no amnesia, and the fact that the first act after the prologue occurs in Zürich and deals with a Swiss bank, nothing is the same.

    Sure, there's a girl named Marie, but s

    I loved the movie and heard that I the book was comparatively awesome. And it was.

    The thing is: I haven't the faintest idea how the movie came out of the book. Beyond the premise of a man fished from the sea with no memory but incredible ingrained abilities and talents that make it look like he's really probably and assassin with no amnesia, and the fact that the first act after the prologue occurs in Zürich and deals with a Swiss bank, nothing is the same.

    Sure, there's a girl named Marie, but she's an entirely different character. Sure, there are people trying to kill the man named Jason Bourne, but they're entirely different men. Sure, there's an American government-run company called Treadstone Seventy-One that is looking for Bourne, but for entirely different reasons. But are all these differences a bad thing?

    No. They are not.

    I really think the first Bourne movie is among the best action films ever created. That said, for most of its running time, Ludlum's 1980 novel is better than the movie. The premise is so much more intriguing and Bourne's turmoil better perceived. Instead of an enemy as doughy and effeminate as cloak and dagger U.S. senators and secret servicemen, the novel pits Bourne against the unbeatable assassin, Carlos the Jackal (though Ludlum refrains from the colourful animamorphism), and his vast array of human resources. The book is action-packed, one of those thrillaminnut rides that refuses, for the most part, to let up. I don't read cheap thrillers often, but

    was worth my time.

    And I like to think that my time is valuable.

    This is not to say that Ludlum's thriller is not without fault. The book's requisite romance is rushed and artificial. We know that Bourne and his interest are in love solely because Ludlum tells us that this is the case, not because we see any evidence that this should be the case. And, actually, there is a far greater problem. The climax is poorly wrought and much more difficult to follow than anything previous encountered in the book. The ending is not satisfying in that by the time it comes, emotional resonance has long-since evaporated.

    But still. I was in love with the book until the last forty pages or so.

  • Wanda

    Perhaps I came into this novel expecting a bit too much—I’ve never seen the movies, only advertising for them, so I didn’t go in completely blind to the story, but about as close as you can get in our society. I can certainly see that this would make a great shoot-‘em-up, car-chase intense movie. I really can’t say that I cared whether Bourne got his memory back or who he actually was. I would have been much more interested in more exploration of nature of the memory

    Perhaps I came into this novel expecting a bit too much—I’ve never seen the movies, only advertising for them, so I didn’t go in completely blind to the story, but about as close as you can get in our society. I can certainly see that this would make a great shoot-‘em-up, car-chase intense movie. I really can’t say that I cared whether Bourne got his memory back or who he actually was. I would have been much more interested in more exploration of nature of the memory loss rather than all the frantic chasing around!

    Kudos to him for his good taste in women, however. I was amused to find out that she was Canadian, from my city. It was also revealing that, although she is a very capable, knowledgeable economist in her own right, she is still often referred to as a ‘girl.’ Oh, I do not miss the 1980s!

    I did very much like the book’s ending, but for me it is the perfect ending. I won’t ruin it by continuing on with the rest of the trilogy.

  • LaFleurBleue

    The scenario is absolutely excellent and probably one of the best I ever read in terms of complexity and continuous action and/or new discoveries. What an imagination ! The story and the characters are slightly different from the movie; I should say the storyline is way much more complex in the book; the characters could do with a bit more substance.

    The major drawback which explains my rather poor quotation of this book is indeed the writing quality, or lack thereof. Some sentences simply do no

    The scenario is absolutely excellent and probably one of the best I ever read in terms of complexity and continuous action and/or new discoveries. What an imagination ! The story and the characters are slightly different from the movie; I should say the storyline is way much more complex in the book; the characters could do with a bit more substance.

    The major drawback which explains my rather poor quotation of this book is indeed the writing quality, or lack thereof. Some sentences simply do not make any sense (even when read 3 or 4 times, on their own and within the paragraph); some images are not relevant;wording is usually poor and quite inadequate; there are mistakes in grammar and conjugation. So much actually of all of this that I really had trouble to open the book again, even though I knew the story was so compelling I would not put it down so easily.

    Ludlum, to my opinion, is the worst writer I've ever read, but with one of the best story-lining and imagination. Indeed I believe Ludlum should not have worked on his own but teamed with a skilled writer who would have put that into right words and made this book into the 5-star winner it really should be.

    This has been my first and probably my last book from this author.

  • woody

    Sorry if you loved this book, I HATED it. Maybe it was above my reading level. There were just too many "alpha, bravo,cain, delta...Cain is for Charlie, Delta is for Cain!" This book put me to sleep so many nights it is surprising that I finished it. I just kept hoping that jason bourne would die...Good thing I shop at Goodwill and it only cost me 50 cents! Everyone tells me that I should give the movie a chance and that it is better than the book, but I ask, won't it remind me of the book and b

    Sorry if you loved this book, I HATED it. Maybe it was above my reading level. There were just too many "alpha, bravo,cain, delta...Cain is for Charlie, Delta is for Cain!" This book put me to sleep so many nights it is surprising that I finished it. I just kept hoping that jason bourne would die...Good thing I shop at Goodwill and it only cost me 50 cents! Everyone tells me that I should give the movie a chance and that it is better than the book, but I ask, won't it remind me of the book and bring all those bad memories back?

  • Duckie

    I don't remember how this ended because I had to buy myself a Jack-and-Coke to get through the last chapter. Ludlum belongs in a very small, elite group of authors who don't know what words mean. To illustrate this, here are some passages from the book followed by the first image that came to mind when I read them:

    "'If I scream, Monsieur?' The powdered mask was cracked with lines of venom now, the bright red lipstick defining the snarl of an aging, cornered rodent."

    "Himself. The chameleon. The c

    I don't remember how this ended because I had to buy myself a Jack-and-Coke to get through the last chapter. Ludlum belongs in a very small, elite group of authors who don't know what words mean. To illustrate this, here are some passages from the book followed by the first image that came to mind when I read them:

    "'If I scream, Monsieur?' The powdered mask was cracked with lines of venom now, the bright red lipstick defining the snarl of an aging, cornered rodent."

    "Himself. The chameleon. The charade had worked...He had done such things before, experienced the feeling of a similar accomplishment before. He was a man running through an unfamiliar jungle, yet somehow instinctively knowing his way, sure of where the traps were and how to avoid them. The chameleon was an expert."

    Aaaand this last one was basically my face the whole time I was reading this:

  • Bagtree

    This book caused me pain. Intense boredom, odd moments of indignation, and pain. It's poorly-paced. The prose is a clunky, redundant, pointlessly vague affront to all that is good in the English language. The dialogue is stilted and horrid. The characters are so robotic I begin to question whether Ludlum ever met a human being, and the "romance" is not only horribly oversold BUT PREDICATED ON BOURNE USING HIS LOVE INTEREST AS A HUMAN SHIELD. I don't care how many rapists a man rescues you from;

    This book caused me pain. Intense boredom, odd moments of indignation, and pain. It's poorly-paced. The prose is a clunky, redundant, pointlessly vague affront to all that is good in the English language. The dialogue is stilted and horrid. The characters are so robotic I begin to question whether Ludlum ever met a human being, and the "romance" is not only horribly oversold BUT PREDICATED ON BOURNE USING HIS LOVE INTEREST AS A HUMAN SHIELD. I don't care how many rapists a man rescues you from; if he introduces himself by slapping, shaking, and threatening to shoot you, HE IS NOT BOYFRIEND MATERIAL and that relationship SHOULD NOT BE SHOWN AS LOVING AND WONDERFUL.

    And seriously, the prose is awful.

    - people will what? I can't even begin to think of a rationale for that.

    And I want my afternoon back.

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