Matthew Sobol was a legendary computer game designer - the architect behind half-a-dozen popular online games. His premature death depressed both gamers and his company's stock price. But Sobol's fans aren't the only ones to note his passing. When his obituary is posted online, a previously dormant daemon activates, initiating a chain of events intended to unravel the fabric of our hyper-efficient, interconnected world. With Sobol's secrets buried along with him, and as new layers of his daemon are unleashed at every turn, it's up to an unlikely alliance to decipher his intricate plans and wrest the world from the grasp of a nameless, faceless enemy - or learn to live in a society in which we are no longer in control. . . .
Computer technology expert Daniel Suarez blends haunting high-tech realism with gripping suspense in an authentic, complex thriller in the tradition of Michael Crichton, Neal Stephenson, and William Gibson.
©2009 Daniel Suarez; (P)2009 Penguin Audio
"Suarez's riveting debut would be a perfect gift for a favorite computer geek or anyone who appreciates thrills, chills, and cyber suspense....A final twist that runs counter to expectations will leave readers anxiously awaiting the promised sequel." (Publishers Weekly)
No that title isn't an exaggeration. If you're content in knowing the information provided in the title and would like to skip the praise I'm about to bestow and just buy the book.
So, another book about computers taking over the world. Ho hum, blah blah, yes? Actually no. While I was reading Daemon the thought that this could really happen kept going through my head. Without giving away some of the plot points, I'll just say this. Read some of the recent news about the Storm botnet. Think about peoples addictions to WoW. Then read the book. Then think about those subjects again.
A few words to the techies: SQL injection attack, botnet, and rootkit. All those words/phrases can be found in this book. No no, my friends, this is not the book equivalent of Hackers (you know where code magically floats across the screen and other cheap tricks), this is a book written by a systems consultant (read: normally the guy that gets called in with the regular schmoes can't figure things out) for Fortune 100 companies. To use a common cliche, he "gets it." Actually he gets it, gets into its inner workings, and turns it inside out. Vague, I know, but I'm trying very hard not to spoil the fun of this book.
There is no reason for you not to read Daemon, no matter your level of technical understanding. Everyone from the CEO who has only the vaguest understanding of his IT infrastructure to the mail room guy who goes home to play WoW for 8 hours to the advertising exec who only knows how to check his email. Check it out from the library, buy it online, or borrow it, just find a way to read it. Read some sample chapters of Daemon if you need more convincing.
I am a blessed man!
This is a sci-fi thriller that had me guessing while on the edge of my seat. It started off realistic enough, but quickly morphed into the sci-fi thriller it is. I was expecting a thriller realistically pushing the edge of technology somewhat like Crichton's Disclosure did in 1994, but Suarez goes way beyond realism in Daemon. Nevertheless, the storyline is entirely unique for this reader
The plot seems to be the end of the world as we know it, but clever enough to wonder if there is something more we do not understand.
The narration is excellent.
This book was not terrible but it seemed like it was written by/for IT professionals (and I am one). The tech is deeply fetishised, sometimes this is interesting like when discussing hacking etc in a semi-realistic way but other times it is just name-dropping brand names of watches and cars. I think I learned more about the characters accessories than their feelings. It holds together mostly on a smaller scale but as the plot widens it goes off the rails a bit in believability and in the characters ability to carry it.
Oh, and there are two girls in it that I can recall, one is a bitch and the other is a two dimensional love interest who gets rescued despite at least giving her an interesting job.
I dunno, maybe I expected a good sci-fi novel and got a 'techo-thriller' instead.
...but lost me at the end. That is the only reason I am giving this book a 4 instead of a 5. The book was fantastic, and I couldn't wait to get in my car and listen to more. But...the book just ended - boom -l ike that! Once I got over the shock, it seemed obvious that a sequel must be planned, but I didn't know that at the time (now I do), and I was a bit put off by how it ended. I mean, most books that have sequels at least wrap up a little bit at the end. But noooo, not this one! However, that is my only complaint about the book. I would recommed it to anyone. It is kind of scary when you think that this story is something that could possibly be pulled off in real life.
About the computer and gaming termionolgy in the book - I have a computer background, but no gaming background, and I think that even if you have neither you can still follow along. So, don't be put off by the technology jargon in particular. You can get through it - and it is well worth it! Now I can't wait for the sequel! Daniel - bring it on!!!
"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one." - Jojen Reed. #ADanceWithDragons
This is one of the coolest books I have listened in a long time. I am seriously a fan now of Daniel Suarez. The entire time I was listening to this book I was utterly gripped. The most interesting thing about this book is how realistic it appears and how current the title is. For anyone who is a techy and worse for anyone who is into MMORPG's this is downright a fascinating listen. There are a number of twists and turns in this book that makes you thoroughly enjoy the entire title.
Jeff Gurner does justice to this title and there is nothing I can fault about his narration at all. It was dynamic, impressive, smartly done and with the different array of characters was just plain a treat.
You will enjoy this book immensely, seamless writing, interesting concept, great twists, relevant and with superb narration.... LOVED IT!
I heard about this book from Leo LaPorte on his podcasts. It seemed interesting so I gave it a go. Damn good book, Leo was right! Even though this book is supposed to be fiction, it seems like it could happen in today's highly computerized world. I 'read' the book over two days while driving cross country. I was so impressed with it I am downloading the sequel, Freedom (TM). Leo, are you listening? This is written in the style of Dan Brown on a good day. Totally riveting.
Driving over 100,000 mile a year since 1983, I got hooked on audible books on tape 30 years back. I now listen from my bicycle 2 hours a day
The premise and execution are decidedly aimed at a much younger demographic but this story grabbed my attention and kept me listening through both books with rapt anticipation. Ruthless and rather horrific it still seemed quite necessary in the war that has to come to wrest the world away from the unscrupulous powers that be.
The seed purveyors that plague the honest farmers are typical of the misuse of the power of patents and a certain amount of violence will be required to overthrow their power. It's but a small part of the story but it kept things in perspective. The uniting of young people in a game type environment to change a corrupt world is a marvelous idea well executed even if the devices used are murderous. In the end it takes an evil to overcome institutionalized evil and then that evil is stripped of power by the people. Wonderful.
I remember thinking that Orwell's '1984' was a fascinating story but so far-fetched as to make me smile. These days, we don't smile anymore as video feeds everywhere capture public and private life. Reading Daemon (and subsequently Freedom TM) makes me more acutely aware of data-base technology's rapid encroachment upon the concept of the private citizen. Knowledge is power, and those who best manipulate it come out on top. While this has always been true, today it has never been easier. Daemon pulls together what some fear is the natural progression of data base technology in a was that is both frightening and powerful. We can only hope that these ideas remain far-fetched.
Daemon is a commentary on power - social, political, and economic - and the use and abuse thereof. You do not have to be a 'techie' to enjoy it. The topic is highly relevant and the narration is excellent. This is sci-fi at its best.
*A few will complain that some of the murders and sex-related scenes are harsh. People, life is often harsh. And humans can be cruel. Nothing new in that. Any who understand this will not take offense. It is, after all, just a book.
Couldn't get enough. The kind of book that could make you late for work because you want to stay in the car and see what's going to happen next!
Wow, there's no middle ground in the reviews for this one, so put me with the pros. A genuinely computer-literate thriller with the tiniest wedge of politics - like the onion in an ice-cold Gibson. I assume this is a first novel, because I enjoyed it so much that I immediately looked for additional work from Suarez and couldn't find any. Get on it Daniel, I want more!
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