Thursday, September 29, 2016

Geek Mafia, Rick Dakan

Geek Mafia (2006) is a book by Rick Dakan. It is available for free on

The setting is a decade ago. Computers at that time had reached maturity. High speed Internet was in its infancy. There is a mafia in San Jose, California, whose mission is to steal using the tools at their disposal: technology of the day, via hacking and other methods.

The main character, Paul Reynolds, was fired from a company whose existence was his brainchild and creation. The company, getting close to making his brainchild into a successful game is on the verge of making serious money, and choose that moment to force him out. As such, he's been made by a group of hackers who decide to con the company and himself out of a big payout.

It succeeds, and they manage to squeeze $850,000 out of the company through blackmail and extortion. That might have been enough for Paul to live on for a long time. But he's gotten a taste for Chloe, and Chloe has gotten a taste for Paul. He loves the life that she brings him into.

However, Raff, one of her crew, feels betrayed by the fact that Chloe falls for Paul and she attempts to let him off with his money (although perhaps this was inadvertent, as is later revealed by some failure to track Paul as he found a place to stash it). He tries to join the crew and helps orchestrate a few cons, the last of which makes him wanted by the FBI. It was a set up from the inside which unravels the last and nearly costs him his life.

The narration is pretty decent for a free modern novel. Rick Dakan has skill. The novel is hindered, however, by many mistakes which could have been corrected by a decent proofreader. The worst mistake was one chapter that ended abruptly and reprinted previous chapters. It did not usually detract too much from the story. However, it would have been much better without all of the mistakes.

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