The Bourne Deception
By Eric Van Lustbader
Grand Central Publishing
Large Print Edition: 2009, 640 pages
Reviewed by Israel Drazin - September 3, 2009
This is Eric Van Lustbader's fourth book under the Robert Ludlum trademark; all four are Jason Bourne novels. It is the seventh volume in the Bourne series; the others were written by Robert Ludlum. The book has many interesting parts, but there are at least five problems with the novel.
First, although ostensibly about Jason Bourne, and he has a role in the tale, the novel focuses more on his girl friend Moira and his enemy Arkadin than on him, and both are involved in more interesting events. Bourne seems to have been emasculated; there is little fight in him, certainly no excitement.
Second, it seems as if the author ran out of ideas of how to deal with Bourne's amnesia. There is no new twist or event because of Bourne's amnesia, nor does it hold him back from acting. The amnesia is mentioned every so often, but the reader wonders why.
Third, while Robert Ludlum's descriptions of places were always interesting and even educational, this book has descriptions that lack both of Ludlum's abilities. In fact, the descriptions act like a drag that entices the reader to drop the book and pick up something more interesting.
Fourth, this book picks up where the prior The Bourne Sanction left off, but Lustbader assumes that his reader knows the prior book and he leaves people who haven't read it sometimes wondering what he is talking about.
Fifth, and probably most important, the book is very slow moving
Dr. Israel Drazin is the author of a series of books on Maimonides, a twelfth century rational philosopher, and the co-author of a series of books on Targum Onkelos, the earliest existing translation of the Hebrew Bible. Both are published by Gefen Publishing House, www.israelbooks.com.