Nyah Parks is an extraordinary teenager who knows how to hack into computer systems better than most. She makes a living from hacking into the systems of major organizations, who then hire her as a data security consultant to make sure it can never happen again. Nyah's mother, after suffering major brain damage from a car accident, is close to dying. If Nyah can secure $250,000, she'll be able to enter her into a medical program that might save her. Nyah decides to perform a hack into a major organization in hopes that they'll hire her so that she can get the money she needs. Unfortunately, she comes upon some information no one was ever meant to see, and her life quickly becomes in danger. She now has to fight to stay alive while trying to find a way to help her mom.
Hacker is the third book in Ted Dekker's Outlaw Chronicles, and it reads very much like some of Dekker's earlier books. It's an interesting concept. When I picked up the book, I had an idea the book would be about tapping into the potential of the human mind because of the cover, but actually reading what Nyah and Austin (a character from the first book in the series) do to themselves was both creepy and interesting. Most of Dekker's books are about tapping into the unseen reality behind all that we see. This book is no exception and probably does it to a far greater depth than some of the other books. Nyah and Austin tap into the unseen reality, but what's really interesting and that I found particularly compelling was the way they're able to tap into the future. Nyah discovers something that she desperately wants to stop.
I thought it was another great Dekker novel. The pace is quick. The themes are clear. The characters are well-developed. The only drawback I have with this series and the book Outlaw is the frequent idea that comes across that we are merely spiritual beings having a physical experience. Our physical bodies are often described as costumes that aren't our identity. While I agree that our identity isn't wrapped up solely in our physical makeup, biblical thought places a high view of the physical throughout. The Bible describes us as a complex hybrid of the physical and spiritual, and the eternal state isn't one in which we shed our physical bodies; it's one in which are bodies are restored to perfection. We'll be forever a complex hybrid of the physical and spiritual. I'm not sure why Dekker has latched onto this concept of the body as costume, but it's one I wish he'd drop. It's a flaw to an otherwise excellent series.
Fans of Ted Dekker's books will probably love this book for all the reasons I mentioned above. It's a great story, and I'd love to read more stories about the characters from Nyah's and Austin's world.