Top critical review
Political Correctness Amid a Jumble of Conspiracy
on August 22, 2003
If you are going to write an "in" book - one that deals with issues in vogue at the moment - you must at least try to make it timeless. Ludlum is at his best when he ignores current likes and dislikes and worst when he uses already overworked themes. This book reminds one of the new television season in which you know that if a show about runaways was popular last year, there will be 10 others like it this year.
Hoover is an easy guy to hate with all his quirks and secrets and prejudices. He served for too long, accumulated too much power and used his position to bribe or blackmail as baldly as Kennedy, LBJ or Nixon. Still, he turned the FBI into the force it is today - a respected, professional group admired around the world.
But back to the story, the tale is intriguing in spite of its trendiness. All the intrigues - where conspiracies and boogeymen seem to pop out of every hedge - advance the plot. One thing I liked about this book is its leanness - Ludlum has gotten expansive for expansion's sake. Not his best but good for a beach read.