Digital Fortress - Dan Brown
After reading and watching "Inferno" with various comments, reviews and recommendations I realized that this wasn't Dan Brown's best work. Hence decided to go the very start and picked up all his works to be read and enjoyed thoroughly. Even this one - his very first book isn't considered a great book from any standards but it was able to keep me hooked to the very end, suspense was good, thrill was enough to keep me on toes and actually made me finish the fastest way possible as I seriously couldn't stretch it anymore as how it all ended. Also realized with the description of its hero David Becker that this was actually the making of Robert Langdon in the long run, his fear of two wheelers, his love of Khaki, Teaching background and of-course his mastery various languages and of solving the complicated puzzles. Superb story of another American invention gone rogue when they build up a machine to decode all the communications going on world wide, may it be email, calls, texts - although built with the purpose of country's safety but its hazardous to privacy. Someone has to do something about it and an X employee of NSA (National Security Agency) takes it on himself to destroy it - he has more then one good enough reason to do it. How he does it in style stretched the narrative to the very last page and keeps the readers glued.
The story moves at a brisk pace with at-least five parallel tracks leading to one explosive finale. Although it does gets predictable around the mid section and I really wondered if it was me only who could see it or others too were able to guess the connection between North Dakota and Ensei Tankado. Making of the code breaking machine TRANSLTR and then the entry of Digital Fortress as the breaker of TRANSLTR is simply too good. The way Dan Brown has written the characters even the villain doesn't look like a villain by the time it all ends and he ably confuses the readers loyalty from one person to other. Topsy turvy love life of David Becker with NSA's best Cryptographer Susan is too good - visually it would have been too good if anybody made a TV series (not a movie for sure) on this one. Dan Brown's characters have to religiously travel to Spain, Italy and will have to speak many languages without fail and it all is very much there to our delight, I really like the way he pushes the reader to use his own intelligence to understand whats going on and its mind-blowing and surprisingly even then this isn't considered as one of his best works, so which one is? Gotta read them all to know better.
This one written in the late 90's is a definite must read as it certainly builds up the basic premise of making of Robert Langdon and I totally loved it.