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Many years ago I read several Ludlum books and loved them. Now decades later I have picked up a couple including Chancellor Manuscript and am left wondering what I saw in this author at the time.
This book misses on several levels.
ONE: the writing style is very dated. Thrillers have gone through a metamorphosis over the last 40 years. Writers like James Patterson have changed how we the audience interact with the written word. The Chancellor Manuscript reads like the 39 Steps. The language is stilted and the dialog far removed from daily life.
TWO: The plot. Its structured around Hoovers death and the files he kept on people in order to hold sway over them. This was news back in the day and the readers must have had that extra involvement, but now its ancient history and so much of the plot centers around this and a conspiracy that feels bland.
THREE: Story structure. The story is told mostly in the 3rd person. Its raw. The story moves from one character to another in strange ways. Its slow. The story meanders from one point to the next not giving the audience very much.
- Narration is not great. I think this narration might be 30 years old. I remember this narrator from back in the day. He's not very good.
- Dialog is poor. No one talks like the characters here do. Very badly done.
- Female characters are 2 dimensional. Think James Bond babe and nothing else.
- Protagonist is dumb. The main character here 'Peter Chancellor', is a smart author uncovering international conspiracies, but he acts like a dupe from page to page.
Skip this book. Its not good.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
It had been awhile since reading a Ludlum novel. Listening to this book reminded me of the great skill and writing style he has. Truly a masterfully written story. A page turner you hate to have end.