Just how many lives does Jason Bourne have?
That’s the question I’ve been asking since author Robert Ludlum introduced his seemingly immortal hero to the world in “The Bourne Identity” in 1980.
Bourne was found floating in the Mediterranean, riddled with bullets, barely alive. He doesn’t remember who he is or how he got there. The doctor who treats his wounds discovers an embedded microchip in Bourne’s body, which leads our hero to a Swiss bank account, and a long list of people who want him dead.
Two more Bourne books, “The Bourne Supremacy” (1986) and “The Bourne Ultimatum” (1990) were published before Ludlum died in 2001.
Since his death, Eric Van Lustbader has released four more Bourne stories under Ludlum’s trademark: “The Bourne Legacy” (2004); “The Bourne Betrayal” (2007); “The Bourne Sanction” (2008); and “The Bourne Deception” (2009). If you’re new to the Bourne series, I recommend you read them in order of publication.
From the moment he wakes up in the first book all the way through the last page of his latest adventure, Bourne has been on a quest to reclaim his life, make sense of his very violent past and, most importantly, stay alive.
He doesn’t do such a good job in “The Bourne Deception.” He’s shot and left for dead by page 30. This is not a spoiler, because a new book, “The Bourne Objective,” is set for release next year.
Of course, Bourne survives the attack, hunts down his assailant and staves off a carefully planned covert war in Iran.
The story is vintage Ludlum, with lots of characters and so many twists, turns and location changes that I sometimes needed a flow chart to keep it all straight. But Bourne is never boring, and the plot line is especially relevant, given the current unrest in Iran.
In the past, I finished a new Bourne book in one long sitting. I was compelled to get the boy out of danger. But now, I’m too old and just can’t go very long without a nap. Plus, I finally figured out that our hero always lands on his feet.
The Bourne Deception -Grand Central Publishing - $27.95 - 423 pp. - Four out of five stars
Someone is killing the members of elite San Francisco society – with no obvious motive and absolutely no obvious cause of death.
It’s up to the Women’s Murder Club to stop the carnage.
San Francisco Police Department Detective Lindsay Boxer joins forces with Dr. Claire Washburn, the department’s medical examiner, assistant district attorney Yuki Castellano and ace reporter Cindy Thomas to track down the diabolical killer.
I read the book in one sitting, smiling all the way, except when the murder weapon was revealed. Yipes! It scared 10 years off me.
The 8th Confession - Little, Brown and Company - $27.99 - 352 pp. -Five out of five stars
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