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The Bourne Trilogy (Jason Bourne #1-3)

4.27  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,079 Ratings  ·  82 Reviews
THE BOURNE IDENTITY: He has no past. And he may have no future. His memory is blank. He only knows that he was fished out of the Mediterranean Sea, his body riddled with bullets. There are a few clues: evidence that plastic surgery has altered his face, a Swiss bank account containing four million dollars, and a name: Jason Bourne. But he is marked for death, racing for su ...more
Paperback, 1408 pages
Published December 4th 2003 by Orion (first published 1991)
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Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy by John le CarréThe Bourne Identity by Robert LudlumThe Spy Who Came In from the Cold by John le CarréThe Hunt for Red October by Tom ClancyThe Day of the Jackal by Frederick Forsyth
Best Spy Novels
54th out of 879 books — 1,569 voters
Harry Potter Boxset by J.K. RowlingThe Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsJ.R.R. Tolkien 4-Book Boxed Set by J.R.R. TolkienDivergent by Veronica RothThe Mortal Instruments Boxed Set by Cassandra Clare
Best Trilogies/Book Series EVER!
67th out of 1,193 books — 709 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dec 23, 2008 Michelle rated it really liked it
The books are great, and I really enjoyed them. Don't try and confuse them with the movies, because they are completely different. When the screen writer wrote the screen play for the first movie he/she stayed pretty close to the book, but the next two movies he/she decided to do whatever they wanted which wasn't staying true to the story line, but oh well... I like the movies, I just want people to understand that they are completely different.
Anne Bonney
Aug 03, 2011 Anne Bonney rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed the Bourne books - read them again recently - so much better than the films. Matt Damon does a good job of playing Bourne, but they changed the storeylines far too much for my liking
Shirley Yant
May 23, 2016 Shirley Yant rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kind of twisty, but okay.
Jun 22, 2016 Kingfan30 rated it really liked it
Shelves: adaptions
Well I'm glad I took this is a holiday read, I think this would have taken twice as long if I had to fit it around normal everyday life.

The first starts out very similar to the film with a man found in the sea who doesn't remember who he is, and that's about it. The plot is very different to the film so I think you have to judge them as separate from one another. I actually enjoyed both versions. For me the first on the trilogy was the best, followed by the last with supremacy bringing up the re
Rina Suzuki
The Bourne Identity
7 words
Man, mystery, lost memory, action, secret, Woman, escape


1. In this book, the main character lost his memory because of accident. He never remember even his name. So, he seek who he is. If you lose your memory, what are you going to do?
I think I am very confused if I lose my memory. But I think, same as main character, I want to know who I am.

2. The main character tried to escape from someone because he was aimed by someone who knows about accident. I
Ronald Stewart
Mar 07, 2016 Ronald Stewart rated it it was amazing
Despite the length of the trilogy, the pages flew by within days. I couldn't put the book down. It was detailed, yet it flowed wonderfully. At its heart, The Bourne Trilogy is an action-packed detective story with a few twists. Absolutely recommended.
Dec 01, 2015 John rated it really liked it
Great series... I had read the first one many years ago and when Kobo came out with a bundle of the first three I decided to read the 'Ludlum' books. Thoroughly enjoyed them and recommended for any readers of this genre..
Jul 07, 2014 Sarah rated it it was amazing
Probably some juvenile imprinting left over from when I first picked these up as a pubescent reader more intent on devouring what my dad - a Green Beret- referred to as "that trash". Ha! He was always trying to tempt me with some non-fiction historical tome or technical manual. I however would not be swayed from my deliciously escapist guilty pleasure of this tragic hero assassin trying to piece together his life in the midst of betrayal all around him. My first introduction to Ludlum. As with a ...more
Samuel Fitzgerald
Feb 20, 2013 Samuel Fitzgerald rated it it was amazing
If I know that there's a movie based on a book, I'll try to watch the movie first. Reason being, for me anyway, is that the book is always better and it might jade my thinking and I'll be disappointed in a movie that I otherwise might've liked. The movie credits where Ludlum is mentioned is what actually turned me on to the Bourne novels. The books and the films differ, but I thoroughly enjoyed each respectively. I've seen the films countless times and it never gets old to me. I really enjoyed t ...more
Philip Reiter
Aug 13, 2015 Philip Reiter rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, thriller, spy
this is the one trying to end the trilogy, but has a somewhat convoluted ending. I thought it the weakest of the three.
Apr 15, 2016 Yogesh rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jason-bourne
Very fast. Ultimate thriller. Fabulous characters. Jason Bourne and Robert Ludlum are the best..
Aug 09, 2014 Aaron rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobooks, thriller
The Bourne trilogy via abridged audio book looses some of Ludlum's style but was still enjoyable.
Ryptyq SkiZion
Jul 06, 2014 Ryptyq SkiZion rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's by Robert Ludlum. What more to saw than that it is Awesome?
Jun 15, 2009 Victoria rated it liked it
Seriously having some issues getting into this trilogy series. I absolutely love the movies and the books are totally different of course. I have some mixed emotions so far, I'm hoping this will change as I get deeper into the trilogy, but at the moment I feel cheated by the movies and yet greatful at the same time. "The Bourne Identity" has been great in some parts and painfully tedious at others. I can't help but think to myself, is this really necessary for me to know this much detail? But I ...more
Winter Sophia Rose
Aug 07, 2014 Winter Sophia Rose rated it it was amazing
One Of The Best Thrillers Ever Written!
Apr 25, 2008 Joe rated it really liked it
This series is a good read. Ludlum writes a good page turner. If you read these after watching the movies, you may be a little confused because the only real similarities are the character names. Set in the cold war and in a time before Hong Kong's turn over to China, the stories have a very different plot than the movies. The movies were good, the books are better. Jason Bourne is a character created by the government who is much more troubled then we first believe.
Dec 21, 2008 Jasmine rated it it was amazing
I'm not even done with all 3 books yet but I'm definitely in love with Jason Bourne.

It was kinda weird for me, trying to reconnect what I watched in the first movie with the book initially. It's somewhat different but still having all the possible connections to Bourne, Marie, etc.

So far, I'd say a must-read for Jason Bourne-fans, not just the movie but the character itself. A book I cannot put down and a book I'll re-read again.
Jan 12, 2008 Jason rated it it was amazing
Very nice series. I only wish that they could have taken the movies to the extent that the books went. I really like the depth that Robert Ludlum was able to bring to the characters, not only the main character, but the others as well. Nice to see that the main character is also flawed and has to struggle through that in the later books, and that he didn't "get the bad guy" at the end of the first story. Would recommend to anyone.
Annette Tang
The movies are so good I thought the books must be better, but they aren't. In all fairness, they're post-cold war era and the technology is about 30 yrs out of date, but I could barely stand to get through them. A man's book for sure. Women only show up to round out the story a little and only as needed to make the hero look better. Though I have to say I prefer that Marie doesn't die in the books, as in the movies. That's about it.
Rhia Frio
Oct 22, 2007 Rhia Frio rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: espionage story lovers
Iloooove all books written by robert ludlum! they are a "racy" read! the bourne series are my favorites! and was amazed when they FINALLY made a film out of it! Because I read most of my ludlum books back when i was still in college and the early years when i started working (late 80's to early 90's). he has a lot actually...matarese cirle trevayne, holcroft covenant..etc etc. read them all!
Mar 10, 2008 Aimee rated it really liked it
As a real fan of the movies, I was really excited to read the books. They were excellent, and I really like this author's style. Of course, they're very action-packed and fast-moving. However, don't expect them to be like the movie at all. It's basically a completely different story with the same names. I kind of liked that, since I didn't ever know what was going to happen next.
Dec 02, 2010 Sharon marked it as to-read
Another one I failed to finish. Partly because I tried to read right after watching the movies. Of course they're totally different stories and because I loved the character portrayed by Matt Damon I just couldn't get into the book.

However after reading the reviews I don't think I gave it a fair shot and as it's several years since the films I think I'll give it another try.
Mar 11, 2008 Ichlem rated it it was amazing
Amazing series. For anyone hoping to find the movies in written format, you will be disappointed. The stories start with the same idea (a highly trained weapons expert who has no idea who he is) but form there the stories head in opposite directions. The details and thoughts that Ludlum puts into these make it all the more real. Not an easy read, but well worth the effort.
Jun 20, 2016 SapphireFox rated it liked it
Recommended to SapphireFox by: Watched the 2002 Movie
Shelves: mystery, espionage
The Bourne Identity: 4 and a Half stars - As far as I can remember, I really liked it.

The Bourne Supremacy: 2 or 3 stars - Can't decide. It definitely wasn't as memorable as the first book, but there were a lot of good points.

The Bourne Ultimatum: 1 star - I struggled for ages to complete this book. It felt extremely round-about, redundant and convoluted.
Apr 17, 2008 Jordan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Very mature young adults and older
This trilogy later ended with a fourth book tells the story of one Jason Bourne and what he went through. These books are not at all like the movie trilogy that was created not long ago, they are much much better. I advise caution to those who don't enjoy reading foul language and violence. Other than that little disclaimer these three books were amazing.
Nov 03, 2007 Annette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
So I loved these books! If you have seen the movies and you liked them you should definately read the books. They are much better than the movie and the story line is actually quite different. Another author picked up the Jason Bourne character and kept writing after the original author died. Those are also pretty good. I will post them as well!
Brett Baca
Mar 05, 2008 Brett Baca rated it liked it
Great books to read, even if you have seen the movies, as the plots are completely different. Well, except for the early part of Book 1. The writing isn't that great, but you don't read these books for Puliter Prize read them because you want to hang out with Jason Bourne, the greatest human weapon and badass, ever.
Mar 23, 2008 Cindy rated it really liked it
Recommended to Cindy by: Don Ellsworth
Make sure you have time when you start these books. It is highly technical and descriptive, not to mention bloody, violent and tense. They do NOT follow the movies. The movies are just based on the behind the novels. Still very good. I saw the movie first and then began the novels after the 2nd Bourne movie came out.
Mar 05, 2008 Megan rated it really liked it
These were always some of Dad's favorites and after the first two films, I decided to read them. They were so well written and totally intense. I had a hard time getting through them because of the grit and the explicit nature of them, but they're really good. SOOOO much better than the stories they used for the movies.
Wachlin007 Hotmail
The first book is definitely the most entertaining, but all are good reads. I like how Ludlum portrays government officials and bureaucracies. Its amusing. You can definitely tell that these books were written during the cold war. Yes, these books are better than the movies. Yes, the movies are different than the books.
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Robert Ludlum was the author of twenty-seven novels, each one a New York Times bestseller. There are more than 210 million of his books in print, and they have been translated into thirty-two languages. He is the author of The Scarlatti Inheritance, The Chancellor Manuscript, and the Jason Bourne series--The Bourne Identity, The Bourne Supremacy, and The Bourne Ultimatum--among others. Mr. Ludlum ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Jason Bourne (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • The Bourne Identity (Jason Bourne, #1)
  • The Bourne Supremacy (Jason Bourne, #2)
  • The Bourne Ultimatum (Jason Bourne, #3)
  • The Bourne Legacy (Jason Bourne, #4)
  • The Bourne Betrayal (Jason Bourne, #5)
  • The Bourne Sanction (Jason Bourne, #6)
  • The Bourne Deception (Jason Bourne, #7)
  • The Bourne Objective (Jason Bourne, #8)
  • The Bourne Dominion (Jason Bourne, #9)
  • The Bourne Imperative (Jason Bourne, #10)

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