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Monday, July 29th, 2013

Reamde

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 9781848874510

© Amazon.fr

Richard Forthrast, former smuggler between the Canadian and US border, is now the creator of a MMORPG named T'Rain; the game is designed to be friendly to chinese gold-diggers (selling characters and artifacts to westerners who don't want to spend the time building up their character). He has hired Zula, his niece, to work in his team. During a week-end at Richard's ski resort just north of the Canada-US border, Zula witnesses an exchange of data-against-money between her boyfrend Peter and a strange man, Wallace. Back in Seattle, the Wallace storms into Peter's appartment because all his files have been locked on his laptop by a ransomware virus named Reamde, written by "the Troll", spreading through T'Rain, asking to put gold pieces in a given location in T'Rain in exchange for the key to decrypt their files. Soon after comes Ivanov, Wallace's boss, who forces Peter and Zula to find the identity of the Troll. They find out that the place where to put the gold is full of thieves attacking the players bringing their gold, but also helped by mysterious characters. Thanks to Zula's colleague, they find the IP address where these characters (working for the Troll) are connected, some place in Xiamen, China. Ivanov, helped by his hired bodyguard Sokolov, kidnaps Peter and Zula and takes them to Xiamen in a rented jet. They meet Csongor, a hacker working for Ivanov, and while scanning the city for the given IP address, are helped by Yuxia, a girl who just wants to help the foreigners. They eventuall locate the Troll in an abandonned building, but Zula, unwilling to let Ivannov coldly kill the Troll, lies about the floor where the latter lives. Sokolov and his men then storm into the wrong place, where islamist terrorists led by Abdallah Jones happen to be making explosives. In the confusion following the explosion of the building, Ivanovov kills Peter for escaping and leaving Zula behind, and gets killed by Jones before he could kill Zula. Jones takes Zula as a hostage and escapes in a taxi. Csongor is saved by the Troll (who's name is Marlon) and follow the taxi in Yuxia's van. In the meantime, Sokolov escapes to the next building, where he briefly meets Olivia, an MI6 agent who was spying on Jones'. Marlon, Csongor and Yuxia reach the taxi at the harbour, and while Yuxia is kidnapped by Jones and leave on a fishing boat, Csongor and Marlon escape and follow the boat with a smaller boat. While Jones and Zula go and kidnap the pilots of Ivanov's jet, Marlon and Csongor attack the fishing boat, free Yuxia and escape to the sea. At the same time, Sokolov finds Olivia's address (from her handbag lost after the explosion) and saves her from Jones' men (the latter had found her address, lost by Sokolov) and they both escape to Taiwan. Zula, with Jones and his men, fly to North America (the goal being to bomb Las Vegas), but crash in British Columbia in the middle of nowhere after Zula has shot Jones' lieutenant who wanted to rape her. Knowing Richard's reputation, Jones wants his help to cross the border and enter the USA, so they travel toward the ski resort, joined by other terrorists on the way. Meanwhile, MI6 guesses that Jones' destination was Manila; in there, Olivia meets Seamus a CIA agent, but they find no trace of Jones. Olivia is convinced that Jones is in North America, where she goes but without full support of her superiors. She meets Richard in Seattle and through his investigations at Peter's place, learns that Sokolov has arrived in Seattle as well (on a cargo ship, arranged by MI6) and picks him up. In the meanwhile, Marlon, Csongor and Yuxia have reached the Philippines in their boat and when Marlon logs into T'Rain again from a cybercafe, Richard learns about his location, tells Olivia, who asks Seamus to investigate. He meets the three and arranges to take them to the US; being a T'Rain player and discovering that Richard suddenly logged out without putting his character in a safe place, he deduces that Jones has abducted Richard. Four groups converge: Jones and Richard, going south to the US border; Zula who was left behind and who managed to escape, following them to the resort, then across the US border; Seamus, Marlon, Csongor and Yuxia, exploring the area south of the border in a rented helicopter, but crashed, shot by the terrorists; Olivia and Sokolov, going to Jake Forthrast's place, which is at the other end of the path across the border, a cabin isolated in the woods (she had met Jake is Seattle) to warn them that Jones is coming. A long battle in the woods ensues, ending in Richard shooting Jones while the latter is distracted by the cougar who was following the long trail of dead men.

[ Posted on July 29th, 2013 at 12:24 | no comment | ]

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