Posts Tagged ‘Big Four’

Deception Point by Dan Brown

January 24, 2012

Deception Point is Dan Brown‘s third novel and a standalone book. In Deception Point, Rachel Sexton, a gister (someone who sums up and condenses important data) for the NRO (National Reconnaissance Office) is called upon by the White House for a secret mission. As soon as she accepts, Rachel is taken off the grid and flown to Ellesmere Island where she is briefed on a stunning NASA discovery. NASA has found a meteorite with several fossils of multi-cellular life  forms within them. NASA and Zachary Herney have been taking a hosing in the polls lately and hope to use the discovery of this meteorite to turn things around. Everything seems kosher at first and Rachel, upon being asked, briefs the President’s staff on the discovery, who had been previously kept in the dark to avoid leaks until the meteorite could be authenticated.  However, shortly after doing so, Rachel and three of the civilian scientist recruits uncover evidence of fraud. The Meteorite, which was found buried in the ice and was thought to have been there for about 300 years, was actually artificially inserted into the ice from below. No sooner do they make this discovery then they come under attack from a special ops team.  Also strung throughout this book are reasons why the privatization of NASA is a very DANGEROUS idea. These arguments become even more chilling in the present day when you realize that, although NASA has not been disbanded completly, it is slowly but surely being turned over to the Private sector.

Overall rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Angels & Demons by Dan Brown

November 26, 2010

Angels & Demons by Dan Brown is the first book of his Robert Langdon series. As in most other books in this series the sheer amount of coincidences make for an unlikely tale, and as in all 4 of his first 4 books if you have read one of them you can guess who the villain is in the other 3. However the book has good points as well. For example, in the talks about how a benevolent god can exist within the harshness of the world, and how science can at TIMES be hypocritical; for example killing the unborn in research designed to save lives. But religion can also be misused or misconstrued for example refusing medicine for your dying kid because it is against your religion, is a prime example of  both how the right to swing your fist, i.e. practice your beliefs, stops at the next persons nose, i.e. when it negatively impacts someone else, and is an example of not using the brain god gave to you. Finally I feel a note of caution is in order, as unlike most authors works where you can tell where the fact ends and the fiction begins, Dan Brown has a  habit of presenting fiction as facts, so care should be taken not to take all of the background information literally. Overall though it is a solid thriller and pleasure read.

Overall rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Digital Fortress by Dan Brown

August 13, 2010

The 2nd member of the previously mentioned Big Four of thrillers is Dan Brown. While he is best known for his Robert Langdon series, Digital Fortress is Dan Brown‘s first published novel. Digital Fortress features Susan Fletcher, head cryptographer for the NSA. She is called into work on the weekend unexpectedly due to an emergency. That emergency is the existence of a code called “Digital Fortress” that even the NSA’s code-breaking super computer cannot break. This code, created by the now late Ensei Tankado would, if released, cripple US Intelligence. As Susan struggles to unravel the mystery, she will come to doubt almost everything and everyone she has ever believed in. What makes Digital Fortress (the book) so great is that it shows the need to balance two very important needs. The need of the government to gather intelligence, and the need for individuals to keep secrets from said government. The hair-raising pace of the climax, and the deep ethical issues raised by the book makes it one of Dan Brown‘s finest masterpieces.

Overall rating: 5 out of 5 stars