Our book social is coming up on June 7th at the Sanderson in the conference room from 9am-10:30. We’ve been enjoying our book chats and this time will be going over Robert Ludlum’s Matarese Circle. I was able to pick up my copy at the county library near my house last week. We have CART scheduled. If you’re a reader join us, even if you didn’t get to the finish the book. The questions Helen comes up with makes us think and our discussions engaging. We hope to see you there.
1. How did you experience the Matarese Circle? Were you
immediately drawn into the story–or did it take you a while? Did
the book intrigue, amuse, disturb, alienate, irritate, or frighten
2. Do you find the lead characters convincing? In particular did you
find the heroes and heroine Bradford Scolfield, (sometimes
called Bray, aka Beowulf Agate,) Vasilisi Talenieko, and
Antonia believable? Compelling? Are they fully developed
as complex, emotional human beings–or are they one-
3. Did you find the female characters in the book, both the lead
character and any other women encountered in the plot fully
developed or just one-dimensional?.
4.Did you find the main enemy characters, Senator Joshua Appleton
IV, The Shepard Boy, (Guilderon), believable, complex or
5. Is the plot well developed? Is it believable? Do you feel manipulated
along the way, or do plot events unfold naturally, organically?
6. Is the story plot or character driven? In other words, do events
unfold quickly? Or is more time spent developing characters’
inner lives? Does it make a difference to your enjoyment?
7. Do the actions of the hero, Bradford aka Bray seem believable
given the circumstances he finds himself in?
8. Given the last few days of the story in Part III, do you find the
actions of Bray or the reactions of others in the plot believable
9. If you have seen any of the movies based on his other books,
especially the Bourne books, did you find any of the actions in
those movies somewhat unrealistic at times?
10. If you have seen any of the Bourne movies, and was swept
along with the suspense of the plot, did you feel that this book
would lend itself to a similar dramatic script suitable for a
movie? Or are there too many intangibles such as the gradual
evolution of the Matarese Circle or Bradford’s inner musings
that would prevent it from being a suspenseful film?
11. Does it annoy you that the author uses Bray in one paragraph
and then Bradford the next almost throughout the book?
12. Consider the ending, especially most of the events in Part III. –
– Did you expect it or were you surprised? Was it manipulative?
Was it forced? Was it neatly wrapped up–too neatly? Or was
the story unresolved, ending on an ambiguous note?
13. If you could rewrite the ending, would you? In other words, did
you find the ending satisfying? Why or why not.
14. Are you aware that the author is referring particularly to a real
life organization called the Trilateral Commission, developed
by David Rockefeller, and supported by several presidents
including President Jimmy Carter? The aims of those
organizations and over-reaching goals including details as to
which countries would be the core countries are roughly the
same –without the intent to replace governments by violent
15. Given his bias against the Commission, (stated in various
interviews and talk shows), do you believe that he is carrying
the commission’s goals to the extreme by having the Circle
develop terrorists who are actually pawns being used to
facilitate the establishment of authoritarian rule?
16. Do you find the last actions of the President in this book to
be believable considering all that has gone before and his
supposed support of Bradford’s disclosures?
17. Does this last action by the President indicate the author is
not finished with the concept, as shown by his next book the
18. If you have not yet read the Matarese Countdown, would you
consider reading it after reading this book?
19. Can you pick out a passage that strikes you as particularly
profound or interesting–or perhaps something that sums up the
central dilemma of the book?
20. Have you read the author’s other books? Can you discern a
similarity—in theme, writing style, structure—between them? Or
are they completely different?