The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum

Among the most fascinating dramatic devices are the use of unknown identity, and the Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum has this in spades.  Smoke, a new novel written by Jeremy Chester, uses it to great effect as well, but in an entirely different manner.  Everyone interested in the thriller and suspense genres knows of the Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum, which begins with the protagonist’s body being discovered in the Mediterranean Sea, badly wounded.  The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum keeps the protagonist’s identity unknown until partially uncovered with a lot of clever detective work.  The Bourne identity gradually emerges, one clue at a time, as the heat on Bourne himself gets turned up.

In this book, the protagonist starts out in the Witness Security Program during the 1970s, shortly after it was originated at the United States Department of Justice, better known now as the Witness Protection Program.  He receives an anonymous letter saying simply, I know who you are.  He quickly learns that his handles within the Dept. of Justice are unaware of the threat, and for reasons of his own, this man decides to go it alone, and track down his antagonist by himself.

The Ludlum series uses identity on many levels.  Another layer of identity confusion within Smoke is that the protagonist was a foster child, never having knowledge of his biological parents.  This works both as a measured increase in the suspense as he struggles to find his enemy who claims to know his identity, but then the question arises, which identity?

Thus as in the Bourne Identity series, we have several things going on, all related to the question of identity:  the identities (at least two, but there are more) of the protagonist, as well as the identity of the antagonist, a mystery to the final pages.

Read the Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum and looking for something similar? Get your copy of Smoke today!