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Robert Ludlum's The Bourne Betrayal    by Eric Van Lustbader order for
Robert Ludlum's The Bourne Betrayal
by Eric Van Lustbader
Order:  USA  Can
Grand Central, 2007 (2007)
Hardcover, CD

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* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Reading Robert Ludlum's The Bourne Betrayal feels just like watching one of the Bourne movies - it's filled to the brim with explosive action and shocking violence, with breathtaking betrayals around every corner.

It begins in Africa, where Bourne's only friend, CI Deputy Director Martin Lindros, is in the field, directly supervising a search for stolen technology that could be used to trigger nuclear bombs. After their geiger counter starts ticking in a cave, Lindros's men are slaughtered and he's captured by the enemy.

In the meantime, Jason Bourne, is undergoing an invasive treatment (involving the stimulation of brain synapses with specific complex proteins) by a psychiatrist, to suppress the frequent flashbacks that began after his wife Marie's death and are making it very hard for him to function. The reader learns early that whoever treated Jason is not the real Dr. Sunderland.

Though most unwillingly, the CI Old Man asks Bourne to retrieve Lindros. He's briefed by senior case officer Soraya Moore about the Dujja organization led by a man who calls himself Fadi (the redeemer in Arabic). CI have a Turk in custody, Hiram Cevik. Bourne sits in on his interrogation and the man escapes, followed closely by Jason and Soraya in an explosive action sequence just made for the movies.

There's a bombing in the city, things quickly unravel, Bourne comes under suspicion by CI, and he's on the run once more - something we know he's very good at - with Soraya helping him on the inside. He heads to Africa. But Bourne's on a much shorter leash than he realizes, there's a mole in CI, and the long-planned vendetta in whose web he's entangled is based on lies. I can't wait to see it play out on the big screen.

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