In Nate Kenyon’s newest, Day One, disgraced hacker/journalist John Hawke follows the trail of a story that could save his career to the offices of Conn.ect Inc. and its CEO, John Weller, formerly of the software company Eclipse. Weller has agreed to allow Hawke to do a profile on him, but Hawke sees the opportunity as a chance to get information on Eclipse, which is on the verge of something big and the talk of the hacker underground.
While in Weller’s New York City office, the machines begin acting funny—a copy machine bites its user, a coffee machine explodes—and then a helicopter falls from the sky. As panic takes over and explosions rock the building, Hawke receives a frantic call from his pregnant wife and son, and then the phones die.
New York has become a war zone, the bridges have been bombed, every machine with an internet connection is a threat, and the police believe that Hawke is behind it all. Together, Hawke and a small band of survivors must find a way to get out of the city, clear Hawke’s name, save his family, and stop the attack before everything is lost.
In this taut thriller, Kenyon, the Bram Stoker Award-nominated author of Bloodstone and The Reach, amps up the tension and pushes the throttle as far as it will go. Full of twists and turns, Day One leaves the reader and the characters unsure of who or what they can trust, as the cunningly evil Jane Doe toys with each, turning the characters against one another and systematically eliminating them.
Although the ending is somewhat abrupt and a few of the characters are more plot-driven than internally driven, Kenyon creates a few very relatable and real characters, chief among them Hawke, whose struggle is palpable throughout, and one of the two greatest computer villains in literature (the other being HAL from Arthur C. Clarke’s 2001: A Space Odyssey). Day One is a novel that will appeal to fans of horror, science fiction, and thrillers. Each twist leaves the reader reeling. It is one of those un-put-downable books, and I couldn’t recommend it more.