Tuesday, February 2, 2016

The God's Eye View by Barry Eisler

The God’s Eye View.  Barry Eisler. Thomas & Mercer.  February 2016. 374 pp. paperback and e-book. ISBN #: 9781503949614.

NSA Analyst Evelyn Gallagher is divorced and her life revolves around her deaf son, Dash.  She’s very, very good at her job at designing facial recognition and camera recognition programs, but she makes a big but accidental mistake.  She tells the Director of the NSA Program that she’s suspicious that there are others using a different program.  Director Theodore Anders hears her out and offhandedly calms her fears; but later he is determined to have her watched.  Add to that the fact that some investigators and now a journalist have coincidentally and accidentally died, all of them connected with the NSA Program.

It takes quite a while to discover what the God’s Eye program is all about, but Anders is willing to do anything to make sure no one can connect the dots between the separate parts of the program.  Terrorism is widespread throughout the world and Anders believes that unless the American government knows everything that is possibly going on as well as what is really happening, we will be attacked for sure and be losers rather than victors.

Now the tension notches up many levels.  The investigator Manus who is assigned to watch Evelyn finds himself having feelings he hasn’t experienced for years upon years.  He also is deaf because of his father’s abusive, drunken behavior; he’s also a closed book normally to any kind of sentimental feelings. But Dash awakens something gentle and kind and Manus is one notch less of a faithful dog for Anders, something it doesn’t take Manus long to find out.

One investigator passes along the secret to a journalist and things rapidly jettison out of control, with Anders out of control and beginning to make things happen that go way beyond the behavior allowed to an American government worker.  To say more would spoil what is a vibrantly complex but satisfying plot. 

This is a story that could be real in our day as we discover terrorists are now communicating through encrypted messages that not even our government can break and terrorist acts occur that are either directed by ISIS or ISIS-like groups or individuals who are copy-cat terrorists but no less deadly.

Fans of spy or thriller novels will love this novel by a talented and knowledgeable writer, Barry Eisler – nicely done and highly recommended!

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