The Bourne Identity - Robert Ludlum

I have really enjoyed all the Jason Bourne movies that star Matt Damon. I'm not one to read spy/thriller novels, but since I liked the movies so much, I really wanted to give the books a try. I also wanted to try reading a "man" book with my husband and thought The Bourne Identity would be a good one for us to read since neither of us had ever read it.

Jason Bourne is a man who has been rescued at sea and has no recollection of who he is. He has been shot and wounded and is near death. The fishermen that pick him him take him to the town of Port Noir to be taken care of by an alcoholic doctor. As he is nursed back to health he realizes that he has certain advantageous skills and a curious implant in his hip. The implant is a bank account number for a bank in Zurich. Bourne realizes that he needs to go there to begin establishing who he is. When he has recovered enough, he heads to Zurich where the story becomes frantic and interesting. His appearance at the bank sets off a manhunt for him, and he begins his run from people who want to kill him. Along the way, he takes a female hostage from Canada and the two of them run from those who would see them dead all the while trying to figure out who Jason Bourne really is.

I have to admit that the book was a little slow for me even though the story itself was interesting. There was a little too much dialogue, and there were points in the book that I didn't realize it had "cut" to another parallel story because there weren't breaks between pages (it might have just been the movie tie-in copy that I was reading). I also really didn't like the whole Stockholm Syndrome thing with Jason and his hostage, Marie. The two have a love affair which doesn't quite make sense to me. I also found Marie somewhat irritating because she was a little clingy (although she was very smart and helped Bourne out a few times). The action in the book was good though, and it definitely kept me reading. Overall, I'd be willing to give another of the Bourne books a try, but if The Bourne Supremacy doesn't give me a little more satisfaction I'll likely be done reading the series and possibly toss out any chance of reading more Robert Ludlum altogether. I do wonder if the Eric van Lustbader Bourne books are better than the Robert Ludlum ones. If you've read them, please let me know! I'd be interested to see what other people think about this series.

Read the Book, See the Movie Challenge

Movie: The Bourne Identity

It had been more than a few years since I had seen the film of The Bourne Identity. I have to say that I really enjoyed it even more watching it this time around after I had read the book. I actually liked the movie better than the book. Fight scenes are easier to watch than read about (I had some trouble figuring out what was happening in the fight scenes in the book). I also liked the character of Marie much better in the movie than in the book. She was from Germany in the film and played by German actress, Franka Potente who I think is great! I liked that she was a little more leery of Bourne and stayed with him because she really had no choice. The authorities were looking for her and she knew she would likely end up dead if she didn't stay with Bourne. *SPOILER ALERT* In the book, Marie chose to stay with Bourne because he saved her from a man that was raping her and intended to kill her. I just didn't really find that all that believable since he had captured and held her at gunpoint.

The movie was fun and action-packed. I gave it 4.5 out of 5 stars. The book I would give 3 out of 5 stars. If you liked the movies, but aren't a big fan of spy/thriller books, I'd just stick with the movie. It had a somewhat different storyline and wasn't really that faithful to the book, but it was still really well done and more enjoyable overall than the book.


jehara said...

I loved the Bourne movies and was curious about the books. Now I think I will skip them. It doesn't sound like I would enjoy them all that much. Thanks for the review. :)

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