The Sigma Protocol

The Sigma Protocol

In Zurich, Switzerland, American investment banker Ben Hartman has arrived on holiday when he chances upon old friend Jimmy Cavanaugh -- a madman who's armed and programmed to assassinate. In a matter of minutes, six innocent bystanders -- and Cavanaugh -- are dead. But when his body vanishes, and his weapon mysteriously appears in Hartman's luggage, Hartman is plunged int...

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Title:The Sigma Protocol
Author:Robert Ludlum
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Sigma Protocol Reviews

  • Hertzan Chimera

    Well, though there's a woman (Anna Vavarro) who works for US Intelligence it's not really a spy novel, though there's a wealthy businessman (Ben Hartman) it's not a legal/money laundering novel, though there's a background of international intrigue it's not simply about world domination as those who're following global governmental revelations would expect. It's a simple murder mystery that uses the main themes as a backdrop, nothing else.

    But with a catch. Motive. There is none. Unti

    Well, though there's a woman (Anna Vavarro) who works for US Intelligence it's not really a spy novel, though there's a wealthy businessman (Ben Hartman) it's not a legal/money laundering novel, though there's a background of international intrigue it's not simply about world domination as those who're following global governmental revelations would expect. It's a simple murder mystery that uses the main themes as a backdrop, nothing else.

    But with a catch. Motive. There is none. Until... and it's like the world we know is shrouded by the world we can never be allowed to know.

    The Sigma Protocol is a page-turning dream of a read. Ludlum's books are so good because he just wrote 'crumbling rope-bridge fiction' and REALLY enjoyed what he was doing.

    I blog'd about my second reading of this novel, this morning, with specific reference to the eponymous Sigma SG of the title ...

  • Clint Morey

    I first read a Robert Ludlum novel after watching The Bourne Identity movie. I started with the Bourne series of books and was hooked. If you're into thrillers, I would encourage you to read those books.

    THE SIGMA PROTOCOL is a stand alone story and has a captivating beginning (as all thrillers should) placing the hero in an untenable position right from the start. From there, things only get worse for the hero. Trying to determine who the good guys and bad guys are is part of the fun

    I first read a Robert Ludlum novel after watching The Bourne Identity movie. I started with the Bourne series of books and was hooked. If you're into thrillers, I would encourage you to read those books.

    THE SIGMA PROTOCOL is a stand alone story and has a captivating beginning (as all thrillers should) placing the hero in an untenable position right from the start. From there, things only get worse for the hero. Trying to determine who the good guys and bad guys are is part of the fun for the reader.

    Ludlum does an excellent job of making you want to stay up a few minutes more at night to read the next chapter just to see how the latest wrinkle will unfold in the story.

    If you like thrillers, I think you'll like this book.

  • Ed

    Ludlum doesn't mess around with small scale conspiracies. He goes for the over-the-top, take over the world conspiracies. This effort is no different.

    In this case, a poor little rich kid, investment banker, Benjamin Hartman, meets up with poor little poor kid made good, Justice Department Agent, Anna Navarro, and, together, they save the world. As in most Ludlum novels, Hartman is an amateur who somehow manages to survive multiple attempts on his life through luck and skills picked u

    Ludlum doesn't mess around with small scale conspiracies. He goes for the over-the-top, take over the world conspiracies. This effort is no different.

    In this case, a poor little rich kid, investment banker, Benjamin Hartman, meets up with poor little poor kid made good, Justice Department Agent, Anna Navarro, and, together, they save the world. As in most Ludlum novels, Hartman is an amateur who somehow manages to survive multiple attempts on his life through luck and skills picked up as a child and in college, mostly luck. Navarro is, of course, a stubborn rebel who goes off on her own whenever her instincts tell her she's right, no matter what the rest of the world is saying.

    The plot became more and more unbelievable, but, by that time, I was hooked into finding out how it all ends. Fortunately for the world, justice and love triumph over ambition and evil.

    The plot is ingenious and has many twists and turns, which serve to keep the reader hooked. Just when you think you have it figured out, something new pops up and the game goes on. The characters are not unlike the girl in the nursery rhyme, very, very good when they are good but very very evil when they are evil. Just keeping the characters separated into good and evil, is difficult because they keep changing colors: once again, a not untypical Ludlum ploy.

    The plot has all the characters moving around the world at breakneck speed. The action takes place in at least eight different countries and moves back and forth between the 1940s and the present as the past poisons the present, a device used in most of Ludlum's stories.

    All in all, though, I enjoyed the book, even while telling myself I shouldn't be enjoying it quite as much as I was. It helps that I am able to suspend my disbelief from time to time.

  • K.D. Absolutely

    This is my nth Robert Ludlum book but unlike those that I've so far read, this surprised me the most. Why? It's backdrop is the Holocaust. And for those who know me or those who regularly read my reviews, Holocaust novels have never fail to touch (choose one: grip, wretch, warm) my heart.

    What will you do if the Jewish father that you loved all your life and who people respected and pitied because he claimed to be a Holocaust survivor was in fact, a Nazi torturer? And you found out th

    This is my nth Robert Ludlum book but unlike those that I've so far read, this surprised me the most. Why? It's backdrop is the Holocaust. And for those who know me or those who regularly read my reviews, Holocaust novels have never fail to touch (choose one: grip, wretch, warm) my heart.

    What will you do if the Jewish father that you loved all your life and who people respected and pitied because he claimed to be a Holocaust survivor was in fact, a Nazi torturer? And you found out this ugly incomprehensible truth only now that he is already dead?

    This is the basic premise of the book. Something that could have win him a Nobel like Wiesel, Kertesz, Agnon, etc.

    However, this is a Robert Ludlum book. This is said to be the last one what he wrote himself and completed before he died. So, there must be the Robert Ludlum ingredients. One, there has to be a secret powerful worldwide organization and yes you guessed it right, it is called "Sigma" (see the title) and it is an organization founded during the last year of Nazi's existence. The group, however, is still operating nowadays and it is composed of the rich and famous people around the globe. It controls the world economy and can influence presidential elections in many big countries.

    Then there has to be two agents, a man and a woman who you think will fall in love because they are cute together. This time, they are

    the surviving son of the dead father and US DoJ agent

    They are both haunted by the Sigma tentacles so they run together in their quest to find out the truth about the organization.

    The last quarter of the book is totally unexpected. They went to the Austria Alps and found something sinister there that will totally make you wonder and regret why Robert Ludlum did not pass on his wall-less imagination to the current herd of mystery-thriller writers. He was just one of a kind in terms of concocting books belonging to this genre.

    I hope the Robert Ludlum estate continue to write and write books that are reflective of Ludlum's intricate plots like this one.

  • Geert Daelemans

    Such a shame...

    While on vacation in Switzerland Ben Hartman, an American investment banker, suddenly stands face to face with his old school friend Jimmy Cavanaugh. They have hardly said hello when without any warning Jimmy pulls a gun on Ben. Thanks to his quick reflexes Ben manages to deflect the assault and kill his attacker. In the meantime, United States Department of Justice Agent Anna Navarro is on the trail of a series of seemingly unrelated deaths. When Anna and Ben's paths

    Such a shame...

    While on vacation in Switzerland Ben Hartman, an American investment banker, suddenly stands face to face with his old school friend Jimmy Cavanaugh. They have hardly said hello when without any warning Jimmy pulls a gun on Ben. Thanks to his quick reflexes Ben manages to deflect the assault and kill his attacker. In the meantime, United States Department of Justice Agent Anna Navarro is on the trail of a series of seemingly unrelated deaths. When Anna and Ben's paths cross, they start to unravel a plot that has already influenced the face of our planet gravely and only promises to widen its influence even more. One thing is clear: Jimmy's death was not the last...

    The Sigma Protocol was published a few months after the death of its author Robert Ludlum in 2001. After struggling through this dome of a novel, one cannot avoid to wonder if publishing this work was a good idea. All the Ludlum trademarks are obviously present: fast plot, many twists, an enormous list of kills and a mega explosive finale. But... maybe The Sigma Protocol has too much of the stuff. It become too much formula and not enough inventiveness. After a while it starts read like some sermons: run, almost getting killed, alley killed instead, run, find other alley, almost getting killed, alley dead, run and so on. A good editor would have cut the size of the novel into half and made it an exciting story. Now we remain with something that drags and drags. This should never have been allowed to be Ludlum's last...

  • Ana Tijanić

    Ok

  • Fredrick Danysh

    Wealthy banker Ben Hartman is in in Switzerland on holiday when an attempt is made on his life. American Department of Justice investigator is assigned to to investigate if a series of the elderly are related and comes under attempts on her life. Soon the two are on the run for their lives and team up to find out who and why they are in danger. A thrilling read by a master of suspense.

  • Tim

    Yeah, Ludlum is a famous author. And I loved

    when I read it as a teenager. I know it's genre fiction, but I love a good escape, so I thought I'd give Robert Ludlum another try.

    I suppose it's what it's supposed to be: fast-paced easy reading. But I was expecting more. It's not a total waste; it must have been a lot of work to put together that many pages. But come on, it's just not fair for a guy to get that rich for such basically mediocre

    Yeah, Ludlum is a famous author. And I loved

    when I read it as a teenager. I know it's genre fiction, but I love a good escape, so I thought I'd give Robert Ludlum another try.

    I suppose it's what it's supposed to be: fast-paced easy reading. But I was expecting more. It's not a total waste; it must have been a lot of work to put together that many pages. But come on, it's just not fair for a guy to get that rich for such basically mediocre writing and plotting. Let me kvetch about three things:

    If you're making that much money, and getting that big an advance, you owe it to your readers to get the basics right. The publisher should be embarrassed at their own copyediting, but given that many publishers don't do squat, it falls to the author. And if your characters are jet-setting all over Europe and the Americas, (1) a lot of readers will have been there and (2) checking it out is tax-deductible! So there's no excuse. For example, a sign in a French police station reads DÉFENCE DE FUMER. Honestly. Such things erode our confidence and make us suspect all sorts of geographical, temporal, and linguistic laziness.

    . Many of the characters are obscenely rich. There is a fascination with these things, and great wealth gives characters a plausible excuse to have access to specialized knowledge and cool stuff like private jets. But please: we don't need to be told at every turn that character

    has a beautifully-tailored gray pinstripe bespoke Savile Row suit, or a[n] Hermès scarf; or Volant Ti Super skis—none of which have any bearing on the plot except to tell us that the owner is tasteful and rich enough to afford it. In

    , knowledge of clothes and accessories is part of the plot; when you do not reach the standard of that screenplay, you're in trouble.

    . I have complained about this before elsewhere. It's a bee in my bonnet. And of course all of these things are matters of taste. But one of the things that makes, say,

    's works so terrific is that what the spies spy

    never really amounts to much. It's important to them, but the Earth never quite moves. Here, well, no spoilers, but the stakes are very high indeed. Ridiculously high. To give Ludlum credit, he does bring interesting moral dilemmas into play, but they get buried rather than resolved.

  • Steve Shilstone

    How to almost, but not quite, be killed over and over and over again for 500 pages

  • Anna

    I didn't care for this Ludlum book as much as other ones. I originally got hooked on Ludlum by reading his Covert-One novels. The Sigma Protocol started out good, grabbing my attention and pulling me in, but I don't think the characters were realistic or compelling. I also found the whole thing to be a bit of a stretch. The biggest conspiracy in the history of the world is just a bit too much for me to swallow.

    I will keep reading Ludlum, my next book is the Bourne Identity, I love th

    I didn't care for this Ludlum book as much as other ones. I originally got hooked on Ludlum by reading his Covert-One novels. The Sigma Protocol started out good, grabbing my attention and pulling me in, but I don't think the characters were realistic or compelling. I also found the whole thing to be a bit of a stretch. The biggest conspiracy in the history of the world is just a bit too much for me to swallow.

    I will keep reading Ludlum, my next book is the Bourne Identity, I love the movies! I will enjoy reading about a character who can handle himself in any situation!

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