In this political thriller, the United States races to thwart a massive cyberattack from China.
A letter thrown into a U.S. Consulate vehicle reveals that covert cyberoperations were conducted against the U.S. secretary of state by the Chinese government and that other attacks, on an even greater scale, are soon to follow. Because Logan Alexander is already in Hong Kong—he is the head of a legitimate consulting firm that also functions as a front for the CIA—he’s tasked with making contact with the letter’s author, Li Jiang. Li is a senior officer in the Chinese Ministry of Public Security, privy to sensitive information regarding China’s designs. He reveals to Logan that China, recognizing that it is no match for the United States from the perspective of conventional warfare, has turned its sights to other means of regaining dominance in Asia and the world at large. To that end, it plans a massive Zero Day assault on the American financial system, with the hope of undermining international confidence in the United Sates. When Li is asked what precisely is China’s ultimate objective, he responds concisely: “Nothing less than China replacing the U.S. as the number one economy in the world.” Logan, a former Navy SEAL whose military career was cut short by an injury sustained in combat, must not only determine Li’s trustworthiness, but also contend with traitors within his own ranks. Author Williams (Cooper’s Revenge, 2013, etc.) is a former operations officer for the CIA, and his professional background is evidenced by the expert account he provides of labyrinthine American and Chinese intelligence services. The author also constructs believable characters: Li’s treason is partly the result of his father’s betrayal by a corrupt Communist Party. The plot races at breakneck speed and artfully combines grand geopolitical drama with political plausibility. There is no shortage of bureaucratic and technological complexity, and readers looking for a breezy adventure story might find the details daunting. But Williams has produced a believable, timely tale brimming with cinematic power.
A skillfully rendered account of superpowers locked in covert war.