Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Andy McDermott: The Shadow Protocol

The first book in a new series by Andy McDermott, he tests the limits to what the US government will go to in order to get the information they need to stop terrorism:

Adam Gray has been created into not only the ultimate spy but the ultimate assets in an interrogation. Adam has the ability to get into his targets' head, literally. Called the Person Project Adam have become the perfect vessel for the project, which allows him to copy the brain patterns of the terrorists and operatives he meets in the field. He not only takes their memories but also their personalities so he is able to impersonate them if need be. Adam has just found out a key piece of information, one that could change the course of the super powers forever,  a plot to release a radioactive isotope, and as Adam and his team go from mission to mission acquire new targets and their memories for Adam, he begins to question who he really is and why he cannot remember anything before becoming part of the project. Some of the biggest betrayals are always close to home and not everyone is going to survive this mission.

This book was able to surprise me and this is mainly centered around the overall concept of the book; creating an interrogation process minus the interrogation. Having the ability to literally take all of an individual's memories, thoughts and personality and transfer them to another individual and a disk is something right out of  left field. I can personally say that I have not read another book with this concept or even heard of this concept before. For originality McDermott soars.

This book does have some slow sits in it especially after the opening capture/release scene.  It took approximately another 50 pages for me to get into the book again. McDermott takes this slow time to catch Bianca (the scientist who is going to help with the Persona Project) and the reader up with what the persona project is and how the transfer is achieved. But I'm not going to lie I kind of glazed over when they started to talk about about different brain chemicals and how they were manipulated to make the Persona Project work. Luckily this is the only part of the book that is slow the rest of the book reall is action packed.

It was hard to get to know Adam since he has lost not only his past but his personality that goes along with it. He truly was a blank slate for the Persona Project to work with. I understand why McDermott did not have any back history given for Adam other than his reoccurring dream, but I wish I would have been able to get to know Adam more as he is the main character in this book. Maybe this will develop further if this becomes a series, as there are events that take palce, that makes you want ot find out more about him pre-project. I like the relationship between Bianca and Adam. It is interesting how the other personas that Adam acquires, picks up on the relationship with Bianca as well, but some of them are more blunt than others.

I really enjoyed this book and I think that McDermott has the making of a very interesting series, if he chooses to take it that way. This book has a lot of action in it that I think will appeal to those who like the fight scenes as well as an interesting and different premise that really sets this book apart. I would enjoy reading another book about Adam and the Persona Project.

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