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Legends Paperback – April 25, 2006
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Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
In the case of "Legends," Martin Udom if a former CIA field agent who has had so many identities (or legends, as they're called in the business) that he's not sure who he is. He thinks Udom is his real self-that is, the person he was before he joined the CIA and became many other people-but in his new job as an unsuccessful private detective, he is receiving internal and external flashes indicating that Martin Udom may in fact be a legend, and that his real identity may be as someone he thought was a legend. The man is in psychic crisis, but he takes on the case of a Russian woman who wants him to find her brother-in-law so he can grant her sister a divorce. This search will initiate a number of near misses with people and information he thinks he would like to forget. He's pulled to regions that featured in his spy-life which brings him closer to complete disorientation. Was he chosen by the CIA because he had multiple personalities, or because he had none at all?
Littell's "The Company" was a huge historical spy piece which looked at the positive and negative impact of CIA activity from the organization's inception. "Legends" narrows that focus to the effect on individuals, one in particular, while keeping up the expected pace. It is a thoughtful, exciting, and compelling read.
Currently he's working as a detective in Brooklyn, taking on cases that seem mundane compared to his former profession. Lost dogs and mahjongg debts, as he describes them. All that changes when he is hired to locate the husband of an Orthodox Jewish woman. The missing man has abandoned his wife, and her religion dictates that he must be located in order for a divorce to be granted. The woman's sister and father, who has a history with the KGB, hire Martin to find the vanished husband; his marital woes may be the least of his problems. The chase is on and the hunt leads Martin all over the world, from Israel to the Amish country, uncoincidentally bringing in some dangerous characters from Martin's former career.
In addition to his personality disorder, Martin suffers from amnesia and cannot remember the traumatic event that caused his own personality to diffract so severely. His therapist is sure that there was one such event until she mysteriously was warned off the case and ordered to forget her findings.Read more ›
Littell's previous novel, The Company, was a mammoth, multigenerational saga of the CIA, basically starting with its creation out of the defunct OSS following World War II and taking readers right up to the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early nineties. It is without doubt one of the classics, among the top 5 novels published within the last twenty-five years.
Legends is an entirely different kind of book. Though it is no less intelligent, no less suspenseful (in fact, it is quite a bit more suspenseful), no less visionary than its predecessor, it's a novel that operates on a more personal, more focused level. There is a single main character (in The Company there were about two dozen), a man with a lost identity which is slowly revealed to him over the course of a manhunt/investigation he is privately conducting. He's a CIA agent who's retired - or has been retired - because of psychological trauma he suffered on the job which he can no longer remember. As an agent he assumed many false identities in his undercover work, now he's no longer sure which of the identities he remembers is the "real" one, and as he's slowly enveloped back into the shadow world of the CIA, he uncovers clues. Pretty soon, the CIA wants himn dead.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great book. Much better than the tv show based on it. I can't believe that I had never heard of him before this. The book is well researched and well written.Published 1 day ago by Amazon Customer
This is the book the Legends TV show is based on. Its about an operative that takes on various Legends, personas that he turns himself into for undercover work. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Amazon Customer
I picked up this book out of curiosity after abandoning the horrible TV show after 2 episodes. Really, all the TV show (imagine combining the worst elements of 24 and Burn Notice,... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Michael Mueller
Excellent book. It's the first book in quite awhile that has held my interest enough to keep me from playing my online games. I'm an avid mystery/suspense/thriller reader.Published 1 month ago by J. Morris
I first purchased the Kindle version of this book 13 March 2013 from Amazon for $9.99. Some two years later Amazon is selling the same E-book for $12.13 ??? Read morePublished 1 month ago by Roland Stone
I bought this book to check out the source material of the TV series of the same name, starring Sean Bean. (The author is listed as a "consultant" on the show. Read morePublished 2 months ago by PianoGuyFromSC
A concept that is fresh, fun, and exciting.Follows a deep-cover operative named Martin Odum, who has an uncanny ability to transform himself into a different person for each job. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Carmen Stefanescu