A technothriller for the malware and Stuxnet era
An airliner’s controls abruptly fail mid-flight over the Atlantic. An oil tanker runs aground in Japan when its navigational system suddenly stops dead. Hospitals everywhere have to abandon their computer databases when patients die after being administered incorrect dosages of their medicine. In the Midwest, a nuclear power plant nearly becomes the next Chernobyl when its cooling systems malfunction.
At first, these random computer failures seem like unrelated events. But Jeff Aiken, a former government analyst who quit in disgust after witnessing the gross errors that led up to 9/11, thinks otherwise. Jeff fears a more serious cyber terrorism attack targeting the United States computer infrastructure is already under way. And as other menacing computer malfunctions pop up around the world, some with deadly results, he realizes that there isn’t much time if he hopes to prevent an international catastrophe.
Written by a global authority on cyber security, Zero Day presents a chilling “what if” scenario that, in a world completely reliant on technology, is more than possible today - it’s a cataclysmic disaster just waiting to happen.
©2011 Mark Russinovich (P)2012 Macmillan Audio
It's not all that common that authors who use technology in their stories get the tech right. Mark does that very well. Since I have a background in tech, getting it wrong would have really taken away from the story. Instead, this was great for a long road trip so I could keep listening.
The use of technology was well placed and well used. This is important for someone who works with technology, otherwise the story would have had major distractions in it
It feels like this book ends abruptly, but I believe that it continues in Trojan Horse which wasn't available on Audible at the time of this writing.
Zero Day has an interesting premise, but falls waaaaaay short in execution.
The only one you get to know a little in this book is the main male character...the others are just plain and uninteresting. The story fails to interest much after the stupid 'TV' start to the book. If you are brave enough to try this one out, you'll know what I mean. The ending...well...anticlimax doesn't cover it.
This book could have been sooooo much more...some interesting found, but not enough to recommend it to anyone except hard core tech nerds...
Some notes on the audio book version...when there is code bits in the book...they get spelled out. Kinda tiring considering the first one lasted around 5 minutes.
Narration... Narration... Narration...
I couldn't believe my ears when the narrator kept pronouncing malware as mailware... are you serious? I also hear ICQ pronounced IQC.... just horrible narration. I didn't want to take a star away from overall but the narration really take away from the overall experience.
If you aren't, don't waste a credit. If you are, you will probably enjoy how our new "toys" are being put to use in today's fight against terrorism. Technology is fascinating but can get a bit boring. The author spends way too much time explaining acronyms, it got old. Johnny Heller did a great job narrating.
Technical virus story
This was a good book, but it never really had me "on the edge of my seat" or anything. Mark (the Author) is a very technical person, and I was very pleasently surprised at how good he was at telling a story as well. If you like this book, look at Daniel Suarez books.
I've been looking for computer or Internet tech thriller but surprisingly in this Internet Age, there are surprisingly few. This nove so far is one of my favorites. I loved Daemon by Daniel Suarez and the sequel Freedom and when I finished them, I went looking for more. This Jeff Aiken Novel was what I found. I wasn't disappointed although I must add that it is hard following a book like Daemon so that says a lot for this author and this book.
I did like this better than Daemon in one respect, the author went into the tech details much more than I'm used to seeing in this small genre and for that I am glad. I can't say enough how much I enjoyed reading parts such as when our protagonist Jeff worked his way through the code on the machine at the law firm or how he describes how script kiddies use buffer overflow bugs to execute code. He explains it in such a way that you don't have to be a computer scientist to understand him. My wife confirmed that for me because she isn't a "computer person" as she puts it, while I am a system and network admin and we both enjoyed it equally.
One thing I'd like to note, because of what I said above and how he goes into detail regarding things like buffer overflows, etc; This is not a hacker instruction guide. You won't learn how to hack by reading this book. Sure, you might get a general idea or even come up with a decent flowchart on what and how to do certain things but I think Mark Russinovich does an awesome job going into the tech stuff while keeping the non-tech audience interested.
I also enjoy the author's writing style. It isn't so much a lyrical style as much as he explains things and tells the story in such a way that lets you concentrate on the story instead of reading or the listening. Even with audiobooks, I often find myself rewinding or playing parts over again because I just didn't get something. I didn't do that at all with this book, well....unless our dog jumped in my lap or pulled my pant leg wanting to go out. :)
Trojan Horse continues on the same theme, I really don't know any direct comparison outside the Jeff Aiken series.
It made me more conscious of the cyber threats.
Just a normal computer geek that likes audiobooks to make my comute easier
This book is a good book for someone who likes tech but doesn't fully understand it. Russinovich tech is solid and explained in a way that anyone can understand. As a full time geek I thought the book was telling me a bunch of things I already knew. I recommended the book to my boss who loves thrillers. I knew he would be blown away with the tech. I know he will enjoy the book and maybe he will understand why I spend so much of my day applying security patches to our network.
Russinovich gives us a glimpse into the world of computer hackers and cyber terrorists. But the view is a bit shallow and the world is populated with stereotypes. My primary concern is that Arabs and Muslims are presented in a manner that invites fear of the "enemy within" and will help feed the appetites of anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bigots. At a time when such bigotry is on the rise (witness the subway murder of a Muslim-looking man in New York City after a vicious anti-Muslim ad campaign was launched), we need less fear mongering.
On the other hand, the intirgue is well constructed and has enough technical material to interest the geeks among us. If it inspires people to increase their own cyber security -- and maintain proper backups -- then it can be deemed a success.
I am not sure who would enjoy this book.
For me it was hard to make a distinction between the the quality of the narration and the quality of the writing.
The code snippets that are elaborated in the text are not essential to the plot.
Report Inappropriate Content