Paranoia (Anglais) Relié – 17 juin 2004
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Until the whole thing happened, I never believed the old line about how you should be careful what you wish for, because you might get it. Lire la première page
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Rapide, plein de suspens et une une fin complètement inattendue !
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Adam Cassidy is the quintessential slacker who is tired of his job at Wyatt Telecom. He diverts corporate funds to throw a large retirement party for a loading dock employee, and he fully expects to be fired for it. But instead he is threatened with criminal charges if he does not agree to steal highly confidential product plans from Trion, a rival of Wyatt. With the help of the Wyatt's CEO, security chief, and executive coach, he is groomed for an executive job at Trion. He is taught to breach the tightest corporate security and turn over his findings. Thus begins his life as a corporate spy, where the game he is playing becomes more and more treacherous, his loyalties to his friends and employers are stretched to the limit, and he is caught in a web of deceit from which there seems to be no exit.
The characters are well drawn and believable. Finder expertly depicts Adam's struggle with his conscience, his problems with his ailing father and best friend, his worries about being unmasked as a spy, and his fondness for his Trion CEO. This makes him a very sympathetic protagonist. The two corporate presidents are strongly contrasted: the Wyatt CEO is ruthless, aloof, and vain; the Trion CEO is paternal, benevolent, and demands honesty. Also included in the interesting cast of characters are a quirky staff engineer, some power-hungry middle managers, a jealous and competitive coworker, and a shady security chief with a penchant for violence.
The suspense kept me on the edge of my seat, and the final plot twist was a powerhouse. Not only is this a fast-paced thriller, but it provides fascinating facts about espionage and corporate security. Each section defines an espionage term, which is then exemplified in the story line. I was shocked to learn about how lax corporate security can be, permitting access to password-protected PCs and locked offices and file cabinets. Even badge readers and biometric scanners can be circumvented. This is definitely worth reading, but be sure to schedule it for when you have some spare time, because once you start it you will have trouble putting it down.
This is not only an exciting thriller, but a touching account of a father-son relationship very well expressed. It was a nice contrast to the main page-turning storyline.
I loved this book from the "grabs you" beginning to its thought provoking ending, and have my husband, brother and friends buying their own copies so we can discuss it.
No slow parts, engaging characters, thrilling story. You won't be able to put it down.
Then, along came Paranoia....Finder's newest release. I was a bit anxious when I started it because I wanted it to be as good as High Crimes. I needn't have worried. Paranoia was terrific but the best discovery of all was the realization that this author was the "real deal." We all have our preferred authors --the ones whose books we buy as soon as they come out. I'm happy to now add Finder to my list.
My favorite kind of book has always been the one where events spiral so out of control that you can't imagine the main character being able to get back on track in one piece. You know the kind of book I'm talking about -- a virtual roller coaster ride. Typical examples would be The Big Picture by Douglas Kennedy, Derailed by James Siegel and A Simple Plan by Scott Smith just to name a few. Paranoia now tops my list as my new favorite heart-stopping thriller. Finder has managed to put the reader right smack in the middle of a power struggle between two invincible high-tech companies with Adam Cassidy as the referee/spy.
Prior to the day when Adam Cassidy's life changed forever, he was a lackadaisical employee of Wyatt Telecom. The CEO of that company soon discovers Adam's involvement in some illegal disbursement of company monies to pay for an employee's retirement party. To compound matters, this party ended up costing the company $78,000.00. Now the CEO has Adam where he wants him and threatens him with prison unless he agrees to plant himself as an employee/spy with Trion Systems, Wyatt's biggest competitor. This is very risky for Adam as it is a no-win situation. If he doesn't do what Wyatt is asking, he'll go to jail. If he's caught leaking secrets by his new employer, Trion Systems, he'll go to jail. Adam accepts the risk just to buy some time never realizing what he's getting himself into.
I can honestly say that my heart was in my throat on many occasions as Adam tries to sneak information out of Trion and into Wyatt's hands. But when Adam starts to feel some loyalty towards his new employer, all hell breaks loose.
I'm not going to tell you anymore for fear of giving anything away. Just trust me when I say that you will love this book. It's a win-win situation for the reader. Joseph Finder has now gotten himself one loyal new fan.
Adam moves ahead at Trion, impressing the CEO, Jock Goddard, so much that he becomes Jock's personal assistant. An amazing rise for a 'slacker.' While he is being fed some really good information, good enough to impress the people at Trion with his views of the market, products, and people, Adam surprises us with his own conclusions. Particularly when one of Trion's products has manufacturing issues, Adam has a novel approach to rescuing it.
Another fast paced book by Joseph Finder. I found myself hating my commute, as it was taking away reading time. It is that good. Adam is a guy that has been thrown into a situation that has him wondering who he is, exactly. He has two bosses, leads two lives, while trying to keep his head on straight to deal with his sick father. I was sweating along with Adam. I especially enjoyed the ending, it was exactly right for the character. Another highly recommended read from Finder.
After finishing the book, I actually took the time to read the liner notes. Now I get where Joseph finds his material. This is a guy that knows his stuff, and is able to apply it to the corporate world. Reading his little bio, I have a new appreciation for his work.
Highly recommended (did I mention that?). :-)
Equally hard-to-swallow is the author's attempt to make Adam an edgy anti-hero--a corporate slacker who doesn't play by the rules--because the author can't resist making his wish-fulfillment hero wonderful too. After all, Adam is the kind of guy who only cheats his company because he wants to give a working stiff a lavish party, Adam is the kind of guy who won't yell back at his abusive father, no matter what he says, because the father is dying of emphysema, and Adam is the kind of guy that "women do tend to notice."
In addition to the annoying hero, the book bogs down about halfway through when it seem like the same things keep happening over and over. And although I liked some of the characters--Noah Mordden, for instance--too many of them seemed like they came from Central Casting (Nicholas Wyatt, especially). Overall, I think the author had an interesting plot idea--and the details about technology and security seemed plausible enough--but stronger characterization and a more believable plot would have made the book much better.