Title: Death in the Clouds (Michael and Alex Nicholas series #4)
Author: E.J. Simon
Published on: 13 October 2020
Genre: Mystery and Thrillers (Techno thriller)
A commercial airline departing from Moscow has gone missing in France. Two days later, the same airline is heading towards Washington, towards The White House to be precise.
A security breach in the military leads to nuclear missile launch. The target? Russia. As two powerful countries (US and Russia) are in panic mode over security breach and possible nuclear war, one man is watching the game he set in motion. He’s a pro-Nazi and wants to continue what Hitler started – world domination.
Death in the Cloud is the fourth book in Michael and Alex Nicholas series but can be read as a standalone. If you are a techno-thriller fan, you must read this book. Why, you ask? Here’s why:
Michael’s elder brother Alex was killed by his enemy. But before that, Alex had taken the help of a few computer geeks to upload his consciousness into a computer aka Artificial Intelligence. It’s been two years since Alex died but he’s still alive. He can come and go whenever and wherever(computer or mobile screens) he wants to, thanks to the internet and world wide web.
Alex is not unlike your usual chatbot. The AI Alex can talk, has facial expressions and is so realistic, you would never know if its actually AI or Alex sitting somewhere in the Caribbean, talking to you via a video call. What else does a techno-thriller fan need, eh?
Death in the Clouds is a mind-blowing thriller. First, the plane is just about to crash into the White House. At the last minute, the plane is destroyed. But this is just the beginning. The missiles with nuclear warheads are launched and within 30 minutes, many Russian cities would be destroyed.
Alex is being hacked. The hacker is , um well, let’s not make this review a spoiler, eh? The President of the United States looks up to Michael to save the country and the world from WW3. Until now, only Michael knew of Alex’s existence. Now, the whole world would know.
Alex can stop the missiles. Firewalls have been built so that humans cannot hack into the system. But AIs are already in the system, no firewall whatsoever. Alex can make use of this to stop the missiles. He must do it before his enemy can stop him. But this comes at a price. Deleting the enemy also means the end of Alex.
The characters are very well portrayed, especially Alex. Many a time, it felt like Alex was just another (alive) character, not a consciousness stored in a computer. The mystery and suspense are well-maintained throughout the story. Get ready for a nail-biting adventure, from start to finish. 😀
E.J. Simon is a master storyteller. I really like everything about this thriller, be it the characters, writing or the plot development. The ending is mind-blowing. The twist as the story ends is simply superb. I highly recommend you to read this book. Psst, this might even get you out of your reading rut. So, chop chop.
Many thanks to Simon/Zef Publishing and NetGalley for the ARC. This is my honest and unbiased opinion.