“Take a Peek” book reviews are short and (possibly) sweet, keeping the commentary brief and providing a little peek at what the book’s about and what I thought.
Hell on earth is only one click of a mouse away…
The Dark Net is real. An anonymous and often criminal arena that exists in the secret far reaches of the Web, some use it to manage Bitcoins, pirate movies and music, or traffic in drugs and stolen goods. And now an ancient darkness is gathering there as well. This force is threatening to spread virally into the real world unless it can be stopped by members of a ragtag crew:
Twelve-year-old Hannah — who has been fitted with the Mirage, a high-tech visual prosthetic to combat her blindness– wonders why she sees shadows surrounding some people.
Lela, a technophobic journalist, has stumbled upon a story nobody wants her to uncover.
Mike Juniper, a one-time child evangelist who suffers from personal and literal demons, has an arsenal of weapons stored in the basement of the homeless shelter he runs.
And Derek, a hacker with a cause, believes himself a soldier of the Internet, part of a cyber army akin to Anonymous.
They have no idea what the Dark Net really contains.
Set in present-day Portland, The Dark Net is a cracked-mirror version of the digital nightmare we already live in, a timely and wildly imaginative techno-thriller about the evil that lurks in real and virtual spaces, and the power of a united few to fight back
This book wasn’t what I expected. I was looking forward to inventive techno-horror… but didn’t really get that until the final third of the book. Instead, we spend time with the main characters as they deal with the evil building up in Portland as the literal gates of Hell threaten to spill open and engulf the world. Parts of this book feel very 70s-throwback-ish, like The Omen with technology, as all sorts of demonic entities, including hellhounds and various gross and disgusting things come teeming out at people from dark corners… and it’s up to our ragtag bunch of misfit heroes to save the day.
In the final part of the book, we see how the forces of evil use the ubiquitous network of tech to infiltrate every person’s consciousness, providing a dire look at just how wired in and dependent we truly are (as if we had any doubt).
The Dark Net is a quick, sometimes gross, sometimes scary read that frightens more with its reflections on our lack of privacy in our cyber-dominated lives than by its invocation of demons and evil gaining world domination.
Interested in this author? See my review of The Dead Lands.
Title: The Dark Net
Author: Benjamin Percy
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: August 1, 2017
Length: 272 pages
**Note: I originally received a review copy via NetGalley, but decided to wait to read a hard copy of the finished book instead.