Bookends: Mar. 10, 1986

THE BOURNE SUPREMACY

by Robert Ludlum

Random House; 597 pages; $19.95

Robert Ludlum knows what all successful storytellers and hamburger makers know: the public likes consistency. A Ludlum novel reads like a Ludlum novel, just as a Big Mac tastes like a Big Mac. The Bourne Supremacy is doubly familiar. The hairy-chested prose ("No man was a match for him; no eyes, no throat, no groin safe from an assault, swift and agonizing") and the conspiratorial plotting are stock Ludlum. So is the hero, Jason Bourne. Readers of The Bourne Identity (1980) will recognize him as the cover name for David...

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