Papal Rogues reviewed by author Fran Lewis


Papal Rogues

Author: Ron Wilk

ISBN:9781936183029

Publisher: Langdon Street Press

Reviewed by Fran Lewis

Would you risk your life to find out who killed someone you never met? Michael Squire and Calder McMonagle never met in person. Both were super-hackers whose skills were employed by Recton Industries for one purpose: to create computer viruses. Using emails that were encrypted these two men communicated daily in order to provide Recton Industries the viruses. Why? For profit, what else! Recton Industries manufactured a problem and miraculously created its solution, which is why Michael and Calder were hired as independent programmers by Arthur Grove the CEO of Recton and Morgan Fiske his partner. But, when Michael hacked into a location and a specific website that he was not supposed to see, the incriminating data would cost those involved too much and the need for his elimination became apparent. So, why does Calder risk everything and come to the U.S. in order to get learn the fate of his hacking partner? Calder considers him a friend. Creating a problem along with its solution was brilliant and productive but for how long? Tightening the distance between legal and illegal, right from wrong these two men entered into a dangerous alliance that would cost them and many others dearly.

Added into this web of intrigue, and manipulation is Aspen Aerospace a government funded organization parading as a public company run by Gavin McCloud, the CEO of the company. What is their real purpose? What is the government funding? What are metamaterials and why would this company want to create a way to make objects invisible to the naked eye? This project is classified and a secret, but before all is said and done, lives will be lost, deceptions will unfold and careers will be ruined. The maze of deceit, deception and lies has just begun.

As the head of Aspen Space, Gavin Mcloud and General Fogg form an unholy bond in order to carry out their plan before the walls come tumbling down on them. Just think of the ramifications of such a project and what will happen if they succeed? Four powerful men collectively known as the Colloquium, joined forces to make sure that success is imminent at all costs. Howard Barker, Renato Ottani, Gavin McCloud and Abraham Gaudet, each powerful in his own right, but one more deadly than the rest. But, which one? Added to this someone penetrated into their non-classified computer files compromising them causing grave concern and adding more pressure on McCloud and his partner General Fogg to find a solution, someone to blame for the breach of security and deal with it.

Under the guise of needing a job, Calder infiltrates Recton, with the aide of an unlikely accomplice, to learn who is behind the conspiracy and murder. Asked to hack into the World Bank as a test of his skills, Calder and his accomplice, Brenda, Michael’s wacky girlfriend, learn more than they bargain for when they find a code linking the Vatican and a powerful man to the cover-up and more. Why would the Vatican need Recton’s services? Why would they want to hack into the World’s Computers? What is really behind the motives of the man in charge? The maze is still unfinished and all of the dots have not been connected.

When Calder and Brenda get too close they become captives of General Fogg and the military witnessing some unspeakable methods used to find out the answers to their questions and preventing one man from telling anyone about the invisibility design project. Brenda’s outstanding hacking skills combined with Calder’s will hopefully help them learn the real purpose behind Fogg’s involvement, the invisibility project, and who killed Michael their freedom.

When Renato Ottani receives a visit from his connection in the Vatican he realizes that the information hidden behind the wall of the warehouse of his company must be protected regardless of who or what has to be sacrificed. With distrust brewing among the members of the Colloquium, the spotlight is shined on Renato and what is his real connection to al of this and can he be stopped before more is revealed? But, panic sets in and Renato rushes over to his company’s warehouse to secure the information hidden behind a brick wall that would cause a major upheaval in the stature of the Holy See and more if it came to light.

A cast of characters so clearly defined in their roles of deception and deceit and a plot filled with twists, turns and surprises, keeps the reader on edge until the end. With nowhere to turn and their faith in each other, Calder and Brenda learn the naked truth, but will that keep them safe from harm in the future? Ron Wilk definitely has written a great thriller that will give the reader pause for much thought and hoping for more.

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