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In most thrillers, "hardware" consists of big guns, airplanes, military vehicles, and weapons that make things explode. Dan Brown has written a thriller for those of us who like our hardware with disc drives and who rate our heroes by big brainpower rather than big firepower. It's an Internet user's spy novel where the good guys and bad guys struggle over secrets somewhat more intellectual than just where the secret formula is hidden--they have to gain understanding of what the secret formula actually is.
In this case, the secret formula is a new means of encryption, capable of changing the balance of international power. Part of the fun is that the book takes the reader along into an understanding of encryption technologies. You'll find yourself better understanding the political battles over such real-life technologies as the Clipper Chip and PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) software even though the book looks at the issues through the eyes of fiction.
Although there's enough globehopping in this book for James Bond, the real battleground is cyberspace, because that's where the "bomb" (or rather, the new encryption algorithm) will explode. Yes, there are a few flaws in the plot if you look too closely, but the cleverness and the sheer fun of it all more than make up for them. There are enough twists and turns to keep you guessing and a lot of high, gee-whiz-level information about encryption, code breaking, and the role they play in international politics. Set aside the whole afternoon and evening for it and have finger food on hand for supper--you may want to read this one straight through. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The National Security Agency (NSA) is one setting for this exciting thriller; the other is Seville, where on page 1 the protagonist, lately dismissed from NSA, drops dead of a supposed heart attack. Though dead, he enjoys a dramaturgical afterlife in the form of his computer program. Digital Fortress creates unbreakable codes, which could render useless NSA's code-cracking supercomputer called TRANSLTR, but the deceased programmer slyly embossed a decryption key on a ring he wore. Pursuit of this ring is the engine of the plot. NSA cryptology boss Trevor Strathmore dispatches linguist Dave Becker to recover the ring, while he and Becker's lover, senior code-cracker Susan Fletcher, ponder the vulnerability of TRANSLTR. In Seville, over-the-top chase scenes abound; meanwhile, the critical events unfold at NSA. In a crescendo of murder, infernos, and explosions, it emerges that Strathmore has as agenda that goes beyond breaching Digital Fortress, and Brown's skill at hinting and concealing Strathmore's deceit will rivet cyber-minded readers. Gilbert Taylor --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
I liked this book as much as or more than other Dan Brown books and couldn't put book down - would make a great movie.Published 2 months ago by Jeff
Good book. I find the text size a bit small, but that might be because I'm a bit old now. Should've gotten the e-book version.Published 2 months ago by Yubo Qiu
Unfortunately I was enjoying this book - forgot it at my daughter's house and they claimed it - they loved itPublished 2 months ago by Valerie Ritchie
Maybe i read this book too late. I think this may have been a great thriller 10 years ago when we didn't have all the advances in technology we see today. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Jose Burgos
Little disappointed never finished it. Gave it to a friend.Published 12 months ago by Lillian Cummings
Almost didn't read this because of online reviews but it was better than I thought it would be. Not Dan Brown's greatest but still a good read.Published 16 months ago by Regina
I enjoyed this book even more than Deception Point, which is saying a lot because I really loved that one. So many twists and turns here. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Vamplover
Dan Brown has a unique way of writing his story , it,s ease to follow and hard to put down. This one is definitely a book I would recommend .Enjoy.Published 18 months ago by Humming Bird
Dan Brown's characters are believable even when his plot is over-contrived as here. It is interesting to see how the author developed his genius as he moved on chronologically.Published 20 months ago by Connie Blenkinsop