The Bourne Ultimatum

The Bourne Ultimatum

4.04 (50,726 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback
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Product details

  • Paperback | 952 pages
  • Chivers Large print (Chivers, Windsor, Paragon & C
  • Bath, United Kingdom
  • Large type / large print
  • Large type edition
  • 0754022277
  • 9780754022275

Review Text

Third and hopefully final volume of the Bourne trilogy, begun with The Bourne Identity (1980) and The Bourne Supremacy (1986). Now in retirement as mild-mannered academician David Webb, deathproof Jason Bourne, the noble assassin and rip-off from the also licensed-to-kill .007 James Bond, splits the ice wherein he's been frozen in the Webb psyche and springs back to life when Webb and his family are threatened by the toweringly psychotic terrorist Carlos the Jackal, who also has returned from the dead. Bourne and Carlos battle from Washington, D.C., through the Caribbean, Europe and Russia - but their real battle takes place in some Psycholand modeled on Disney under LSD. (Bourne today is as much Batman as Bond, and Carlos is as nutty as the Joker, with no attempt to lift him above comic-strip villainy.) After a ten-year hiatus, bad assassin Carlos vows vengeance upon rival but good assassin Bourne and declares there is not room for both of them on the same planet, even though Bourne is now inactive. Carlos manages to enter secret computer files and discover Bourne's alter identity and focuses insanely on blowing him away. The Ludlum plot that follows is laughable, and not one in a million readers will be able to retain its thousand-rooted growth down the novel's 624 clotted pages of schizoid twistings and gasps of paper-thin prose. As ever, Ludlum pitches each moment and conversation at a level of total hysteria being held in check by a steel band that just keeps the book from blowing apart in your hands. On page one Ludlum screams, "Get in! For Christ's sake! The novel is underway!" And off we hurtle. Almost no chapter ends unpunctuated by one or more deaths, no matter how stupid or pointless, most often with Carlos' personal signature, a few bullets through the throat. The story ends with a body count surpassed only by Ludlum's exclams and beloved springlings of italics. Megadumb. But will it sell? By the boxcar!! (Kirkus Reviews)
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Rating details

50,726 ratings
4.04 out of 5 stars
5 36% (18,087)
4 39% (19,773)
3 20% (10,323)
2 4% (2,024)
1 1% (519)
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