Title: Betrayed by Karen E. Olson
Black Hat Thriller Book Three
Publisher: Severn House Publishers
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller
Length: 224 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
Computer hacker Tina Adler discovers that her true enemy could be someone terrifyingly close to home in this cunningly-plotted tale of identity and suspense.
Framed for ordering a hit on mobster Tony DeMarco, Tina Adler is forced to re-enter the shadowy world of computer hacking she thought she’d left behind. In order to clear her name, she reluctantly joins an FBI team led by her old flame, Zeke Chapman, tasked with scouring the deep web to unearth DeMarco’s darkest secrets.
The trail will lead Tina to the person who framed her – but it may also reveal other secrets, secrets she would rather not know. DeMarco may, in fact, be the least of Tina’s worries. Could her true enemy be someone much closer to home?
Betrayed, the third installment in Karen E. Olson’s Black Hat Thriller series, former hacker Tina Adler (aka Nicole Jones, Susan McQueen and Helen White) must return to Miami in order to discover who is framing her for ordering a hit on mobster Tony DeMarco. With FBI Agent Zeke Chapman at her side, Tina confronts the ghosts of her past while trying to decide whom she can trust during this latest investigation. This newest addition to this fantastic series easily stands on its own, but I highly encourage readers to read the first two novels as well.
Tina’s attempt to eke out a normal life is once again interrupted when FBI agents show up at the bike shop where she works on Cape Cod. Ready to flee once she is released after questioning, Tina is dismayed when she finds Zeke waiting for her. Stunned to discover the laptop she gave to him a month earlier has evidence linking her to the hit on Tony, she has no choice but to accompany Zeke back to her former hometown. Upon their arrival, she is unhappy to learn Zeke wants her to work alongside the team of hackers he has assembled to try to trace the person (or persons) responsible for the frame up. Tina also wants to try to uncover the identity of “the shadow” who previously hacked into her computer and demanded a hefty ransom from her. Uncomfortable working with Zeke’s group, Tina tries to find a safe place to work on her own and she soon uncovers information that rouses her suspicions and leaves her wondering whom she can trust.
Tina’s hacking skills are much sharper now she is back in the game. Realizing the answers might lie in her very distant past, she returns to where everything started. Armed with a nifty device that enables her to gain access to other people’s computers, she manages a quick glimpse of what she believes to be the hacker’s computer. What she sees during her brief foray raises some very uncomfortable misgivings about the one person Tina thought she could trust.
With her location quickly compromised, Tina is again on the run when Zeke unexpectedly arrives on the scene. Barely escaping unscathed after a hair raising car chase, they are soon deep are soon immersed in the Dark Web as they continue their efforts to find the hacker who is leaving evidence that implicates both of them in numerous illegal activities. Time is not on their side as they desperately try to uncover the truth about who is behind the various money transfers, fake e-mails and messages and the hit on Tony DeMarco.
Betrayed is another fast-paced and compelling addition to Karen E. Olson’s Black Hat Thriller series. Old and new fans will have no problem keeping up with Tina and Zeke as they race to find the hacker who is setting them up for a plethora of misdeeds. On the dark web where evil lurks behind anonymous screen names and impossible to trace IP addresses, will Zeke and Tina unmask the hacker’s identity before it is too late?