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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Digital Fortress by Dan Brown




This is the 4th novel I have read of the author- Dan Brown. I had started with Da Vinci Code and then read Angels and Demons and then laid my hands on The Last Symbol. I had enjoyed reading all of them. So, when I saw 'Digital Fortress' in the library, I picked it up. It had been in my to read list for a long time.

The novel is fast paced and thrilling and kept revealing its secrets in bits throughout the novel. That is what kept me engaged, I was always anticipating what was going to happen next. But, again there were also some stages in the story where I skipped some pages and then continued to read. I found some of the details really monotonous as if the author had been trying to stretch things a little to much.

After having read four of his novels, I realised a striking similarity in all his stories. They are all written in the same fashion. The story in this novel starts with Susan Fletcher, a brilliant and beautiful mathematician and the head Cryptographer of National Security Agency (NSA). She wakes up to call from his fiancee, David Becker, a language professor to postpone their weekend plans of holidaying at the Smoky Mountains. Susan is dejected and lost in her thoughts when she receives a call from NSA's deputy director, Strathmore who tells her that there is an emergency in Crypto and asks her to come over immediately.
NSA possesses a high complex code breaking machine- TRANSLTR, that can decode an damn code in this world. But, on this particular occasion, it has encountered a mysterious code that it cannot break. On arriving at Crypto, Srathmore briefs her of the situation. She comes to know that NSA had been held hostage by an unbreakable code-'The Digital Fortress' which is created by an ex-employee of NSA, Ensei Tankado. Ensei had been furious about NSA's intrusion into people's private life because of their ability to access and snoop round anyone's personal electronic data without prior permission. He had worked on the project of TRANSLTR but when NSA maintained that they would not go public about its existence, Ensei was displeased. He did not consider it to be ethically correct and in his quest to set things right in NSA, he decides to create an unbreakable code. If this code is released as planned by Ensei, it would cripple US intelligence and would help organised crime and terrorism to skyrocket!

Susan also learns that Ensei Tankado died of an heart attack in Seville, Spain and is surprised to find that Strathmore has send David to collect the code key. In Spain, David finds out that Ensei had given away the key which is in a form of ring to someone while dying. In his run to find the ring he meets a number of people who are then mysteriously killed by a professional assassin.

In her attempt to help Strathmore in decoding Digital Fortress for her country and her love, Susan comes to know about secrets that she has been so long oblivious about. The story will take you from the walls of NSA to the corporate houses in Japan and to the streets and lanes of Spain in an exhilarting pace.

In the end, as in all the Brown books I have read, all things fall in their respective places. But how that happen is the thing to read in the novel. Of all his books I have read, this is the one I liked least.

2 comments:

  1. This book was somewhat on the similar to angels and demons.

    ReplyDelete
  2. @Abhinav,

    It was similar in the sense that the plot is constructed in the same fashion.. Codes crptsa dn the hero/heroine fighting every odds to decode it!

    ReplyDelete

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