Jason Bourne is a master assassin who has lost his memory. Follow along as he learns who he is and what he is capable of while his world crumbles around him at times.
Man there is a serious change between the books and the movies, but at the same time they are the same. The themes do not change, assassin who lost his memory meets a woman who helps him and they fall in love. The second book there is a massive change in the story as far as location, but someone claiming to be him still is there. Then in book three it comes back to being basically the same theme.
There are 3 other big changes for the entire trilogy that change the major story line. First is the removal of "The Jackal" who is the big bad for the entire trilogy in the book (He is the assassin that Bourne was created to go against to remove him from the field). The second, while not that big of a deal overall does present an issue for the trilogy, is his background. Specifically, in the books he was part of a clandestine group in Vietnam that was then targeting "The Jackal." The movie, he volunteered for this job after his dad was killed. The death of the family is the driving force for both book and movie so that is the same. The last change is Conklin. The movie kills him in the first movie and the books he is the Bourne's best friend. A final change that is there, but doesn't really change much is that Marie (German vs. French Canadian) doesn't die.
Those are the major changes. Lets talk about the books. I am honestly not a big fan of the books. First, there is a constant overthinking "I wanna do this, but the Jackal knows I'll do this, so he is going to counter, which will make me do this, but he will expect that." That back and forth is EVERYWHERE for 3 books. It is annoying. I will say that I did like the books keeping Conklin around as he is a really good character in the books. There is a setup at the end of the initial trilogy about the doctor friend is suspicious, but I am not sure where that is going yet.
Switching to the movies and still talking about the doctor, I can't remember if he has the same name as the Doctor that shows up in the third movie. If that is the same character, then maybe he is bad and we just haven't seen it yet. The movies do introduce a couple new characters, the tech and the investigator, that don't hurt the series, but just replace people they killed in the movies that are alive in the books. However, the movies are much more concise and action oriented. The scenes are well done with good action and camera work (With the exception of the motion sickness forced down your throat in the second movie) and the story is well told. The changes they make don't change the actual story for the most part as the major themes are still there and in my opinion, they are updated to fit the modern time correctly. Also a lot of the overthinking and back and forth and all the Vietnam stuff is removed.
So the books first. The books are entertaining, well writing, just not my thing. I am curious about the story so I will keep reading them, but only when there are not better things to read. The books are a 6. The overthinking really gets to me and takes a lot out of the books. Also there is a Multiple Personality Disorder (See Split for more accurate representation) or Schizophrenia type fight between Webb and Bourne that just really seems over played and forced.
The movies I think are the better way to consume these stories. You lose a lot of the overplayed, redundant, and forced narrative points of possible backstabs, misunderstandings, just dumb side quest type tropes and you are left with an entertaining series of movies. I mean they are still meme worth today. The movies overall I will give a 8. That is kinda the average between them, which as I write this seems high, but I think is accurate to how I feel about their entertainment values overall.
My dad likes 1 and 3. 2 with the shaky cam can kick rocks. Action is there, sex and language is limited to non-existent, and there is a tradecraft type intrigue that you can enjoy. There is no family value content in the movies so my mom is out. As for their interest in books, I think I might have said this in the Game of Thrones - Books vs TV write up, but I have no idea what there book consuming appetite is. My mom has listen to some really weird books that if made into movies scene for scene, she would not watch.