Brain Jack by Brian Falkner
While trying to hack into an international telecommunications company to use their account to score a couple laptops and newfangled headsets, seventeen-year-old Sam Wilson and his best friend crash the worldwide computer grid, bringing the United States “to its knees,” in the words of the New York Times. Unfortunately, Sam is tricked into revealing his real identity, and Homeland Security decides they need him on their team of uber computer hackers who protect the country against terrorist cyber hackers. This fast-paced novel moves at a breakneck speed, heavy on action, but light on characterization. But who cares when you’re saving the world using neural headsets that make keyboards and computer mice obsolete. Problem is, if you’re interfacing directly with the internet, can others out there access your brain directly?
I really enjoyed this engaging story, being somewhat of a computer geek myself. It is perfect for fans of Cory Doctorow’s Little Brother, Laurie Halse Anderson’s Feed and any of William Gibson’s titles.