Flick has always been good with computers. She knows how to make them work and they respond to her commands and she has made this her work, employed by the University of Sydney. She has won the university prestigious grants, recognition and admiration with the development of a certain program named ……?
Then the program, which could be extremely dangerous if it falls into the wrong hands, is stolen and her mentor is brutally murdered. Flick suddenly knows why the program she created had code she didn’t understand when she last opened it. Her mentor suspected that something like this might happen and he could be double crossed. He’s placed a ‘time bomb’ within the program and only Flick can defuse it and also, stop the program from doing the sinister things it’s capable of if instructed.
But Flick’s life is also in danger, in more ways than one. The police think she might have had something to do with her mentor’s murderer and they’re looking for her. It won’t be too long before the thief discovers the altering in the program and then they’ll come looking for her too. It seems that the only person Flick might be able to trust is Ben, a security guard on campus who isn’t exactly what he seems.
Flick knows it’s going to be up to her – she created the program and she’s the one who needs to do what has to be done. She bribes her way in to the headquarters of the mogul responsible for its theft and scores herself a job, presumably working with the program to do what her boss wants. What he doesn’t know is that Flick is working for herself to destroy what she created, no matter what it costs her, even if the price is her life.
The Danger Game is one of the December titles from Australian digital first imprint Harlequin Escape. The titles this month sound very promising – I’ve already downloaded three to my kindle and I enjoyed this one enormously. Technical espionage is so fun!
Flick is a computer geek, a programmer who has been plastered in front of a computer since she was 10. Although she could’ve travelled far and wide to work, going into the private sector or staying working for universities, she’s stayed close to home due to the fact that her mother suffers from a debilitating and incurable illness. She’s only quite young and has created a program mostly for fun but one that could be very dangerous if it fell into the wrong hands and was put to use in government or military circles. Unfortunately for Flick, the program has fallen into the wrong hands with a billionaire man of dubious means and activities the short odds for being behind the theft of the program and also the murder of Flick’s mentor. The billionaire recently offered Flick a job which she declined due to her suspicions of his activities but when it seems most likely like he is the one in possession of her program, she begins to reconsider.
At Flick’s side is Ben, who is a spy posing as a campus security guard. Part of the reason he was even on the university campus was Flick’s program and what they suspected its creation would bring out of the woodwork. He sticks to Flick like glue right away, making sure that she knows that he can keep her safe but without locking her up and throwing away the key. As a ‘spook’, Ben is used to being in the field and he sees the validity in Flick’s plan that she infiltrate the thief’s workplace and use her position to destroy the program. The danger of this is extreme, because this person has already proved that they are willing to kill for the program and what it can do and it’s obvious that someone destroying it will infuriate.
This story was expertly paced and full of action. A lot of the technical stuff went over my head, although there isn’t a huge amount of jargon and information, it isn’t overwhelming. I do love this sort of story, there’s something so exciting about espionage and high technology and clever programming. I wish I understood computers better, it always seems such an interesting thing to be involved in. Flick was so clever and brave putting herself in the firing line. Even though she’s petrified, she tries to keep a cool head and her wits about her when she ends up in a bad situation.
This novel was a great read – there’s only one thing I wish and that was the chemistry between Ben and Flick was a little more explored. I love a good spicy scene to really drive the relationship along and although this one was fun, I’d have liked a little more exploration of their attraction and a love scene that was part of the story and not left up to the reader in a fade-to-black scene!
Book #270 of 2012
The Danger Game is book #88 read and reviewed for the Australian Women Writers Challenge 2012