‘The Bourne Ascendancy’ is the 12th novel featuring Jason Bourne and the 9th written by Eric Van Lustbader (who took over the series after Robert Ludlum’s death). While this is another exciting action thriller, I can’t help feeling that the series is drifting further and further from its origins. This novel contained only a token reference to Bourne’s amnesia.
The US President is preparing for a meeting in Singapore with the Israeli and Palestinian leaders to help broker a peace deal. Iranian terrorist El Ghadan will do anything to stop the meeting from occurring. So he kidnaps an old colleague of Bourne’s – Soraya Moore along with her husband and two year old daughter. He gives Bourne a choice to kill the US president or Soraya and her daughter will be murdered. Bourne’s approach is to find as much information on El Ghadan as possible to try and find his weakness.
Mossad agent Sara Yadin also gets involved in trying to save Soraya.
Meanwhile Camilla Stowe has been commissioned by two of the US President’s offsiders to kill Bourne. She doesn’t realise that as the President’s current bit-on-the side they have also taken out a contract on her life.
Bourne, in researching El Ghadan, ends up as part of a terrorist cell also planning to kill the President.
So everyone is trying to kill everyone else for all sorts of different reasons. I’m still trying to work out what happened in the end! The US President was portrayed as a half-wit who couldn’t keep his dick in his pants. The country would probably have been better off without him.
With a few exceptions, most of the characters were fairly clichéd. Bourne looked like he’d met his match a few times, so not all the baddies were completely incompetent.
For all the things that I didn’t like about this book, I think I preferred it to the previous two Bourne novels. But, it is definitely the earliest books in the series that keep me coming back in the hope that the Bourne magic will be recaptured.
Book Published 2014