Saturday, March 10, 2012

Review: Brain Jack by Brian Falkner


Las Vegas is gone...

... destroyed in a terrorist attack. Black Hawk helicopters patrol the skies over New York City. And online gaming is the most dangerous street drug around. In this dystopian near-future, neuro-headsets have replaced computer keyboards. Just slip on a headset, and it's the Internet at the speed of thought.
   For teen hacker Sam Wilson, a headset is a must. But as he masters the new technology, he has a terrifying realization. If anything on his computer is vulnerable to a hack, what happens when his mind is linked to the system? Could consciousness itself be hacked? Before he realizes what's happened, Sam's incursion against the world's largest telecommunications company leads him to the heart of the nation's cyberdefense network and brings him face to face with a terrifying and unforeseen threat.
   Suddenly, logging on to a computer could mean the difference between life and death.

This book is a YA thriller. I don't read this book genre a lot. I was at a book store and saw the title and just had to read the back. It sounded like a good read, so I bought it. And I'm happy I did.

On Friday, on his way to school, Sam Wilson brought the United States of America to its knees.

The idea that gaming could be a dangerous street drug made me think of my brother. He loves video games, he even wants to design them one day. He got a new game Tuesday, and has spent most of his time playing it.
Anyways, the plot of the book is good. The development of the characters was good and spaced through out the book. It didn't grip me as much as I think a thriller should, not as much as I hoped.
   During the hacking part of the book, some of the science didn't make sense. And the metaphors the author used sometimes made it worst. I wish the author could have done a better job of explaining what the hackers were doing. I mean, I know I don't know a lot about computers (I know the basics), but I'm sure I'm not going to be the only non-computer genius to read this book.  
  The best part of the book was the idea that some one's brain could be hacked. That was easily what unsettled me the most. Just the idea that someone with a computer could know you deepest thoughts, the ones that you don't put on paper, scares me. Especially considering that a time with neuro-headsets might not be that far in the future.
  Even with it's flaws, I liked the book. It might not be for the casual reader, but I do recommend it.

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