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Digital Fortress | [Dan Brown]

Digital Fortress

When the NSA's invincible code-breaking machine encounters a mysterious code it cannot break, the agency calls its head cryptographer, Susan Fletcher, a brilliant, beautiful mathematician. What she uncovers sends shock waves through the corridors of power. The NSA is being held hostage, not by guns or bombs, but by a code so complex that if released it would cripple U.S. intelligence.
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Publisher's Summary

When the NSA's invincible code-breaking machine encounters a mysterious code it cannot break, the agency calls its head cryptographer, Susan Fletcher, a brilliant, beautiful mathematician. What she uncovers sends shock waves through the corridors of power. The NSA is being held hostage, not by guns or bombs, but by a code so complex that if released it would cripple U.S. intelligence. Caught in an accelerating tempest of secrecy and lies, Fletcher battles to save the agency she believes in. Betrayed on all sides, she finds herself fighting not only for her country but for her life, and in the end, for the life of the man she loves.

©1998 Dan Brown; (P)2004 Books on Tape, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"In this fast-paced, plausible tale, Brown blurs the line between good and evil enough to delight patriots and paranoids alike." (Publishers Weekly)
"Digital Fortress is the best and most realistic techno-thriller to reach the market in years....A chilling thrill a minute." (The Midwest Book Review)
"Exciting...will rivet cyber-minded readers." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (2235 )
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4.1 (771 )
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4.3 (756 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Michael Paul 08-18-06 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dan Brown's worst"

    The story was totally unbelievable. I have listened to and loved the other Dan Brown books from Audible (i.e. Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons, and Deception Point). In Digital Fortress, however, I found Brown’s ignorance of computer science, cryptography and mathematics to be distracting. Since these items were intrinsic to the story line, the story did no make any sense. I am talking about more than just a few mistakes. The plot was a joke.

    The narration by Paul Michael was excellent. Dan Brown writes with a great flow. The book may be worth reading if you can forget anything you know about math and physics while you read it or can embrace ignorance.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Mitchell Arizona, USA 11-24-05
    R. Mitchell Arizona, USA 11-24-05 Member Since 2003

    computer maven

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Predictable"

    Da Vinci Code was always tantalizing - it kept you starting the new chapter. This book is so predictable that it is tiresome. I listened to the unabridged version in honor of Da Vinci Code. What a waste of my time. Save yourself the aggravation. The final code was so obvious I predicted it as soon as I read the description of the riddle. Then the most brilliant cryptographers in the world spent pages trying to solve it. Boring. Brown is trying to be too cute and has no new tricks in this book.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathleen North Scituate, RI, USA 04-09-05
    Kathleen North Scituate, RI, USA 04-09-05 Member Since 2013
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    "Skip It"

    I really enjoyed the DaVinci Code and Angels and Demons -- but, the talent seen in those books was not visible in this effort. The characters were cookie-cutter stereotypes, the plot was a misery and the technical details inaccurate. Save your book credits for Mr. Brown's later works.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Aaron Conifer, CO, USA 11-11-04
    Aaron Conifer, CO, USA 11-11-04
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    "technological marvel, spellbinding"

    This is another of Dan's great works... suspense, thrill, moving, and an excellent progression thru the whole thing! Lots of technology, and a long climactic ending keep you drawn in thru the whole thing! Whether or not it's factual I don't know, but he writes like it is, and because off that, the story builds on its own foundations. I would love to read more stuff like this.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dan Canada 03-26-12
    Dan Canada 03-26-12 Member Since 2014

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fantastic read!"
    If you could sum up Digital Fortress in three words, what would they be?

    Fast paced action


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Digital Fortress?

    I loved all of the technical talk around the encryption used.


    What does Paul Michael bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His voices are fantastic and he really draws you into the story


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rosanne Purnwasie 12-03-11 Member Since 2006
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    "Imaginative and Creative!"
    Where does Digital Fortress rank among all the audiobooks you???ve listened to so far?

    This book ranks among the best that I have listened to thus far. It has a creative storyline and most of all, it was read very well by the narrator. I didn't get lost or sleepy as can sometimes happen without good narrators.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favourite character has got to be Susan Fletcher. I do have to admit that this is a biased choice as she is a very accomplished woman and holds a significant position in a highly secure organization. She holds many responsibilities but most of all she is well respected by men in the organization. She is someone that I respect and commend being a woman who is also accomplished and can relate to her with respect to the characteristics revealed.


    What about Paul Michael???s performance did you like?

    He read the book with great enthusiasm and interest. I could hear it in his voice. This brought out all of the suspense and drama into the arena of performance rather than just feeling as though he was reading it because he had to.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There had to be many moments but the end brought me great relief. After all of the events that brought the blood pressure up and the heart racing, it was nice to relax and hear the end worked out in a calm and relaxing atmosphere, and informative and educational as well.


    Any additional comments?

    Although the book was written in 1998, it still held its modern relevance within 2011 when I listened to it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    james Hartselle, AL, United States 10-11-10
    james Hartselle, AL, United States 10-11-10 Member Since 2014
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    "Geniuses should be smarter than this."

    Audible had a deal on this title and I was curious to see if Brown's writing was worth the incredible hype surrounding him so I gave it a try.


    As for the style of Brown's prose: it's entirely adequate, but nothing exceptional or even distinctive.


    As for plot: Riveting, but far from believable. Plenty of deus ex machina and unlikely coincidences balance stupid decisions made by the characters. I'll give him credit for making all parties equally fallible yet insanely lucky.

    The climax was hard to listen to, not because it's very tense (which it is) but because the tension is for the wrong reason. They need a code and have a clue to finding it. I don't have a background in science or history, but the minute I heard the clue the answer is instantly (and blindingly) obvious. Yet we're supposed to believe that a brilliant cryptographer, a genius software coder, the Director of the NSA, and a room full of others take nearly 15 MINUTES to figure it out?


    It's paced well and makes you want to see what happens next, but as with so many other thrillers the cookie-cutter writing and characters like the supermodel cryptographer and the action hero linguistics professor make it seem like an otherwise good book dumbed down for the best-seller market.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dawnalene Groton, CT, USA 09-19-09
    Dawnalene Groton, CT, USA 09-19-09
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    "Fantastic"

    Dan Brown just gets better and better! Every bit as good or better than Deception Point! Just when you know you figured it out... you didnt.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    wilsonchua 05-15-09
    wilsonchua 05-15-09 Member Since 2014
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    "SANS Security Primer meets Angels and Demons"

    I have only read up to chapter 23 and so far am thrilled with what i have heard so far. This novel is both entertaining and educational!

    Would be aspiring hackers can learn a lot of technics just by following the fast paced twists and turns of the drama.

    Cant wait to get to the ending of the novel!

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maryola Farmingdale, NY, United States 12-25-08
    Maryola Farmingdale, NY, United States 12-25-08 Member Since 2012
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    "I loved this book"

    This book was a very edgy book, I completely enjoyed it. It's a recommend read, it's very thought provoking.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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