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The Matarese Countdown (Matarese #2)
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The Matarese Countdown (Matarese Dynasty #2)

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  5,043 Ratings  ·  93 Reviews
CIA case officer Cameron Pryce thought he'd crushed the deadly cabal of powerbrokers and assassins. But like a phoenix rising from the ashes, the Matarese dynasty is back. Now the countdown begins -- and Pryce is already running out of time. "The Matarese Circle, " Robert Ludlum's multimillion-copy spellbinder, introduced a treacherous international cabal of powerbrokers a ...more
Paperback, 576 pages
Published October 1st 2004 by Orion Publishing Group (first published October 13th 1997)
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Marija I
I was somehow disappointed which is uncommon for Ludlum's books... This one took a little longer to read and didn't necessarily keep me interested the whole way through... There were times I had to really force myself to keep going.

If you are picking up a Ludlum book for the first time, don't choose this one! Also if you have not read 'The Matarese Circle', which is book number '1' in this series, don't attempt this one. There is a lot of prior assumed knowledge and character development and pl
Mar 04, 2017 rated it liked it
Not as action=packed as the first Matarese story (something I find with a few Ludlum sequels, Bourne Supremacy being the exception). The theme of a global takeover reminded me of my favourite Ludlum novel, Aquitaine Progression, but the manner of the takeover is different.
Jul 25, 2016 rated it did not like it
I got this book out of a box of free books sitting in front of a bookstore, and I guess you'd say that I paid the right price. I was fairly generous in my (three star) review of the Matarese Circle, which was a goofy and cliched piece of writing, but was at least a fun beach read. This sequel, however, should never have seen the light of day.

In the Matarese Countdown, the shadowy and inscrutable Matarese group are back at it again. What exactly are they back at? Pretty hard to tell. Something ab
Adam Nelson
Jun 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Not quite as fun as the original, but to be fair I got interrupted in my reading of this one by a binge of GRRM's A Song of Ice and Fire. That aside, I think what dampened the effect of this one a bit is that you're already well aware of the scope and depth of the Matarese conspiracy. Ludlum seemed to know this, however, so the attention in this one is more on the interplay and banter between Brandon Scofield, the old spook, and Cameron Pryce, the young one. However, this friendship lacks the de ...more
Bernard A.
This was disappointing. I had hopes for this story, given the reputation of the author. How did he get such a great reputation. His writing is stilted, bordering on purple, with such lines as, "Oh, I see what you mean," said the tall, attractive, and formidable Antonia,...," and, "Our?...Taleniekov is dead. He's gone!" "Not in my head, Cameron Pryce. He never will be."

This last leads me to another point, his character identification. Cameron Pryce is sometimes Cam or Cameron or Pryce or Cameron
Feb 27, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
This was left behind in my hotel room by a previous guest and I picked it up when I ran through my own books. It's a spy novel from the late '80s and feels like a straight to DVD spy movie. Computers and technology we take for granted are almost magical devices that can do almost anything. If it weren't for the authors need to explain how wonderful these things were it wouldn't have been so distracting. I've read many spy/thriller type novels set before the ubiquity of computers that dealt with ...more
Sep 08, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
Shelves: fiction
Wow. This was cheese. Other reviewers have probably said it better but this was way off the mark for the work of Robert Ludlum. A number of years ago I read almost all of Tom Clancy's books back-to-back during one summer of reading. This may have disguised what I later noticed to be a "dumbing" down of his work. Campy dialogue, impossibly perfect characters, and useless repetition of important plot lines became the norm in Clancy's work (maybe it was there all along, but Rainbow Six was the majo ...more
Fredrick Danysh
Jun 01, 2015 rated it liked it
After an absence of twenty-four years the Matarese are back with their plans for world domination. A CIA agent and a military intelligence office work to prevent that takeover with the help of a retired CIA agent who destroyed the group two decades previously. This work is fast paced with bodies dropping all over the place. Vintage Ludlum by the man himself not someone else using his characters.
Rick Ludwig
Aug 05, 2011 rated it it was ok
Just okay. A bit of a disappointment considering how much I enjoyed the Matarese Circle.
Tomaz Bercic
Jun 24, 2011 rated it did not like it
His butler did it.
Nov 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
L. C.
Jul 20, 2017 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one
Extremely disappointed in The Matarese Countdown - more so considering how much I enjoyed The Matarese Circle. The narrative was on par with his other works but the atrocious dialogue seemed written only to pad page count. Normally reading is a pleasure, but this was more like a chore. Why, oh why, can't I just stop reading a book I'm not enjoying?
Jun 20, 2017 rated it liked it
Igor Brezovic
Nov 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Best political thriller ever. Period.
Oct 10, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I don't recommend reading this before "The Matarese Circle", the prequel. Slow at first.
Feb 07, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
CIA case officer Cameron Pryce thought he'd crushed the deadly cabal of powerbrokers and assassins. But like a phoenix rising from the ashes, the Matarese dynasty is back. Now the countdown begins -- and Pryce is already running out of time. "The Matarese Circle, " Robert Ludlum's multimillion-copy spellbinder, introduced a treacherous international cabal of powerbrokers and their hired assassins. More than 20 years ago, the top CIA and KGB agents joined together to insure that, in an explosive ...more
Christian, Kelanth, Scala
Circolo Matarese: conto alla rovescia, in originale "The Matarese Countdown" è un romanzo di spionaggio scritto da Robert Ludlum e pubblicato nel 1997. E' il sequel de "Il circolo Matarese".

Robert Ludlum, come già detto molte volte nelle mie precedenti recensioni è un maestro indiscusso del genere spy-story, tanto da meritarsi l'appellativo di "Mr. Plot" -signor complotto-. Ha scritto 27 romanzi thriller. Il numero di copie dei suoi libri in stampa è stimato tra 290 milioni e 500 milioni. I suoi
Apr 30, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: thriller
This is the first Robert Ludlum book I've read and I went into it with somewhat high expectations considering how well known he is. My expectations were not met. The story is okay but his writing style; particularly his dialog, really just didn't feel right to me. None of the dialog between any of the main characters seemed believable. For example, at times one character would say something and the initial response would be heated and angry but then, almost immediately, the angry character would ...more
I don't know what happened here. I've read a lot of Ludlum books before but when I started this one, there was just something off about it that I can't put my finger on. I wondered why. It bugged me for days on end. A few years ago I saw this again while cleaning my dad's bookshelf and decided to do some research.

Well the general consensus was this doesn't look like Robert Ludlum's work. Was disappointed at that, although I really have no way of knowing if it was true. Probably a ghostwriter? H
Hertzan Chimera
Aug 17, 2012 rated it liked it
In Ludlum's follow-up The Matarese Countdown, a much slower (tedious) book published in 1999, Brandon Scofield is dragged out of self-imposed exile on some Caribbean island to once again foil the rising phoenix of the Matarese inheritance. As I've said, I was rather disappointed with the narrative events of this sequel. Circle was fraught with narrative dead ends and 'how can he survive this' while Countdown just happened, scripting by numbers. It was the all-too-smooth routing of the remaining ...more
Jul 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: literature
Robert Ludlum never fails to disappoint. I didn't realize that this is a sequel to the Matarese Circle, but that didn't seem to matter too much - it was easy to keep up with past events. However, the format of the book seems to follow the Bourne series closely, sometimes it seems that only the character names are changed.

The plot involves current and former CIA agents trying to stop a secret organization (the Matarese) from dominating the world's economy for their own personal financial gain. I
Paula Howard
May 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
The Matarese Countdown is the sequel to the Matarese Circle. Scofield and Toni barely escaped with their lives after believing that the son of the Shepard Boy had been killed and thus the Matarese has been killed. They go off the grid on and island and live an enjoyable life away for the spy world......UNTIL.... the US and the world needs their talents... the Matarese is back.

This time the circle is made up of the descendants of the the Count of Matarese who started it all. They are intent on co
Sivaraman S
A mediocre novel with mediocre characters (not sure why some of them were even included)...Felt the author lost the grip over the plot...the middle of the book just dragged on with field officers from CIA, Mi6 flying all over Europe and US with no compelling motive...The author keeps exaggerating about how clever, evil and satanic the Matarese is and how Beowuf Agate is almost next to god undercover agent (sadly both being average)... "Amsterdam" in italics occurs through out as if to make some ...more
Apr 07, 2014 rated it liked it
To be honest, the ending was a bit of a let-down. It was a good sequel, but it didn't deliver the same sense of suspense or urgency found throughout Martarese Circle. We have a lot more visibility into the workings of the bad guys this time, and it results in them feeling a little inept, especially toward the end. We went from the beginning of the first book, where these mysterious bad guys can literally find you anywhere, to the end of the second book where we can apparently sneak right into th ...more
Feb 26, 2011 rated it liked it
Not Ludlum's best, but not his worst either. Formulaic like Ludlum's other books, however this is set 30 years after the Matarese Circle, with some of the worst characteristics of Ludlum's worst novels, and only glimpses so far of his best work. Ludlum is the master of the chase and action sequences and tangled webs of anti-government conspiracies, and while this novel is chock full of the latter there sure isn't much action so far. There is just a ton of buildup, with shocking (not) revelations ...more
duane rygh
Oct 04, 2012 rated it liked it
This sequel to 'The Matarese Circle' doesn't quite match the original story in intensity nor conflict. It comes off as Ludlum by the numbers. Put protagonists in harm's way, let protagonist avoid harm, and then wash, rinse, and repeat for 500+ pages. There is too much of the 'charming, almost over the hill' operative. The first book thrived on the solid premise of sworn enemies working together for something greater than themselves, but the threat of Ludlum's revived Matarese comes off as cliche ...more
Sep 22, 2008 rated it liked it
Actually read the original 1997 hardcover as I continue to finally read my old books. This was a sequel to The Matarese Circle which I read shortly after publication a long time ago but it's story came back while reading this. Typical Ludlum fast read about world-ending or dominating plot. About this time in his career his stories starting getting too predictable. Still worth reading if you like the genre.
Mar 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
This in the second book of the Matarese Dynasty. CIA case officer Cameron Pryce is hot on the trail of the new Matarese alliance. One of the Matarese's victims survives long enough to whisper dying words that will blow the case wide open: the top secret code name for legendary retired CIA agent Brandon Scofield - the only man who has ever infiltrated the Matarese inner circle and lived to tell about it. This book is a great follow-up to the Matarese Circle.
Feb 20, 2013 rated it did not like it
I've read almost every book Ludlum has written and this was by far the worse. In fact, I found it written so poorly, that I have a hard time believing he actually wrote it. The characters were two-dimensional and the dialog was cheesy. Put the story into an outline, and it's great... but whoever developed this outline into a novel did a poor job. If you're a Ludlum lover, stay away from this book.
İlk kitap kadar yoğun ve sürükleyici değildi. Sonunu iyi getirse de kitabın önemli kısmı çok kalıplaşmış ve can sıkıcı üçüncü sınıf casusluk filmlerinden çıkan diyaloglarla örülüydü. Sonunu iyi bağlamasa ve yer yer vites arttırmasa çok amatör bir kitap olarak kalacakmış. Sanki kitabın yarısını Ludlum'dan başkası yazmış. Son Çember'i sevdiyseniz karakterlerin uğruna 530 sayfayı okumak isteyebilirsiniz benim gibi.
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Never Disappoints! 1 8 Sep 26, 2013 02:23AM  
  • The Ares Decision (Covert-One, #8)
  • The Bourne Betrayal (Jason Bourne, #5)
  • The Fighting Agents (Men At War, #4)
  • Mesmerized
  • The Janson Command (Paul Janson, #2)
  • Fortunes of War
  • A.K.A. Jane (Jane Nichols, #1)
  • The President's Daughter (Sean Dillon #6)
  • H.M.S. Unseen (Admiral Arnold Morgan, #3)
  • (Tom Clancy's Power Plays, #2)
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
More about Robert Ludlum...

Other Books in the Series

Matarese Dynasty (2 books)
  • The Matarese Circle (Matarese #1)