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Paul Janson Books In Order

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Publication Order of Paul Janson Books

The Janson Directive (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Janson Command (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Janson Option (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Janson Equation (2015)Description / Buy at Amazon

The name ‘Paul Janson’ refers to a series of spy thriller novels written by Robert Ludlum. The books follow the exploits of a former government assassin who cannot escape his violent past.

+The Story
The Paul Janson series began publication in 2002. Robert Ludlum, the author to whom the books are credited, died in 2001. So it goes without saying that Ludlum did not actually write the Paul Janson series.

However, Ludlum did write the Bourne Identity series and various other novels that eventually acquired bestseller status. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise to learn that the publishers of the Paul Janson novels saw fit to impute the series to him.

While ‘The Janson Directive’, the first novel in the series, specifically identified Ludlum as the writer, subsequent sequels identified him merely as the creator, with the writing credit going to Paul Garrison and Douglas Corleone.

The pair had quite the difficult task of injecting themselves into Ludlum’s universe and writing his stories in a manner that would appeal to his fans. Most such fans have shown appreciation for their efforts, praising the Paul Janson books for maintaining the action, complexity and the thrills of the spycraft that made Ludlum’s books such a delight to read.

When Paul Janson is first introduced in ‘The Janson Directive’, the eponymous hero of the series is a freelancer of sorts. Janson was a government spy, an assassin that the United States deployed on secret missions to perpetrate activities that were not always legal.

He thought he had left that life behind. But then a billionaire philanthropist was kidnapped by a terrorist group known as ‘The Caliph’, and Janson was forced to undertake a rescue mission to repay a favor.

Janson understood the risks that waited ahead. He knew The Caliph was a ruthless group that had refused to negotiate for their prisoner’s life, having determined to kill him in the most brutal manner.

And yet Janson was also pretty confident in his abilities, having garnered a lifetime of experience during his days as a covert assassin sanctioned by the government. What should have been a difficult but adeptly executed rescue mission goes badly wrong.

Janson is framed for a crime he did not commit and he has to go on the run, hunted by the most brilliant minds the United States intelligence wing has to offer. Chief amongst them is Jessica Kincaid, a young operative whose keen intellect allows her to anticipate every move Janson makes.

As the walls close in on him, Janson has to go on the offensive, dragging his mysterious enemies into the light.

The harrowing adventure shows Janson the error of his ways. He realizes that for all the violence and mayhem he unleashed as a government assassin, he cannot simply escape into retirement, not when his skills can be used to bring peace and order to the world.

Additionally, Janson is forced to accept the fact that the United States isn’t the most honest of employers and that if he wants to do some good, he must start operating on his own, working outside the purview of the government or any other organization that might attempt to control him.

Joined by partners he can trust, Janson forms a new security organization called catspaw. The Paul Janson series follows the operative around as he undertakes dangerous missions around the world.

Janson initially sets out to work with Jessica Kincaid to rescue disenchanted former government agents and operatives from desperate scenarios, individuals that have been used and thrown aside by the government.

Janson and Kincaid work to get these people clean before sending them into the world to start new lives. Over time, it becomes clear that these former operatives could prove useful to Janson as an invisible intelligence network working to support Catspaw’s activities around the world.

As the series progresses, Janson begins to accept independent assignments for hefty fees. As with his government role, Janson is still only called upon to execute the most dangerous and most sensitive of assignments, missions that other people consider impossible.

However, unlike his government role, Janson now has a code. Not only does he have an aversion to killing civilians or anyone who does not directly intend to kill him, but Janson has also sworn off torture.

Additionally, he only undertakes missions that benefit mankind. In doing so, Janson hopes to make up for his past crimes and actions. His new creed does not make things easy for the protagonist who comes against some truly dangerous international criminals and villains, figures whose ruthless antics test every ideal and belief that controls Janson.

The Paul Janson series has plenty of action, intrigue, and suspense. Some plots are simple and straightforward while others are overly convoluted and complex.

+The Author
Robert Ludlum was a bestselling American author best known for the Jason Bourne series of novels. A former marine, actor and producer, Ludlum wrote a lot about heroic male figures that fought powerful enemies who used political intrigue and power to dominate their weaker victims.

1). The Janson Directive
Peter Novak is a billionaire that has spent his life using his wealth to promote democracy around the world. When he is kidnapped by terrorists who are determined to kill him, the United States government asks Paul Janson to plan and execute a rescue mission.

Janson worked for a notorious covert government operation and he garnered a reputation for beating impossible odds. However, not even Janson expected things to go so wrong.

Before long, Janson is on the run, marked for death by both his government and a terrorist organization. There’s a conspiracy afoot, one that Janson must unravel before it’s too late.

2). The Janson Option
Paul Janson did a lot of terrible things as an assassin for the government. Now he’s making up for it by rehabilitating disenchanted agents and executing independent assignments that he believes will benefit the world.

When an oil executive’s wife is taken by pirates, Janson is called upon to rescue her. Janson thought that Somali pirates would, on their own, present a potent enough threat. He did not expect other machinations and plots to complicate matters, plots and machinations that might consume him unless he makes the rational choice to abandon the innocent victim he promised to rescue.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Paul Janson

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