Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Fool's Run - John Sandford

This book was first published in 1989, before the Prey series - under John Sandford's real name. The hero was a painter who was also good with computer, named Kidd (or Mr. Kidd - his first name is unknown to readers). Sometimes he played Tarot. A big defense aviation company in Chicago hired him to attack its rival's computer system. Kidd's employer stated that they had invented a new technology called String and that the rival had stolen it. They needed to slow the rival down by attacking its computer system.

Kidd hired his friends: a burglar named LuEllen and an ex-investigative journalist named Dace. He also sometimes called Bobby, a hacker specialized in databases.

After the work had been done, Kidd realized that his employers had not been telling him the truth. He tried to punish them, especially for trying to getting rid of him and his team; but it was almost impossible to hack into their computer system because while Kidd had been working for them, they had learned all about his ways.

The conclusion was quite funny... and simple. Try to think about what will you do if you are fighting against a computer or a robot and had failed to defeat it.

At first I had worried this book would be hard to read, you know, it was about hacking. There were indeed some hard parts, like when the technician explained to Kidd how String worked. But overall I could enjoy reading this book.

Kidd was a Tarot reader. After hired by the aviation company, he "did five quick spreads, and The Fool showed up in critical positions in three of them. The Fool represents a major change that occurs as a natural and inexorable part of life, without your volition, because of the way you live." Thus the title The Fool's Run.

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