E. J. Simon https://www.ejsimon.com is the author of five novels. Death in the Cloud was published in 2020 and is the fourth novel in his Michael Nicholas series. It is the 62nd book I completed reading in 2023.
Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence and mature situations, I categorize this novel as R. The primary characters are Nicholas and Alex Nicholas.
Alex Nicholas is a very active character in this novel, even though he died two years earlier. He had been shot to death in Grimaldi’s, his favorite Queens restaurant. Alex had run a global loan-sharking and sports-betting operation. Michael Nicholas, his younger brother by ten years, is CEO of the very successful Gibraltar Financial. He has also secretly taken over his brother’s illegal business operations.
Alex had invested some of his ill-gotten gains into cloning himself into AI software. The Monsignor Kurt Schlegelberger, operating out of the Vatican, had been their live nemesis in an earlier novel. While he too is dead, he also creates an AI clone of himself. Schlegelberger and his live minions are sowing chaos.
A jetliner headed from Moscow disappears over France. Two days later, that same liner appears over the Atlantic on course for Washington DC and the White House. U.S. nuclear missiles have locked onto targets in Russia following a cyber attack. The Russian government readies its response. The world sits at the edge of a nuclear war.
Michael is pulled into the White House and must reveal his virtual brother. Only through Alex will the US be able to avert a nuclear disaster. But that will likely necessitate the permanent destruction of his AI presence.
Mixed into the plot are the neo-Nazi Free Forces Party and the hit woman/bodyguard Sindy Steele. Can Alex stop the evil Schlegelberger AI? Is he willing to let himself be deleted?
I enjoyed the 6.5 hours I spent reading this 400-page thriller. The cover art is not exciting, but it is relevant to the story. I give this novel a rating of 4 out of 5.
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This is such a topical book in that it drags traditional thriller approaches into the modern world, layering technology and the cyber world over the top. I loved the way it made me think about technology and the touch of the sci-fi brought into the story. A clever, fun read which I highly recommend.
This is a sci-fi mystery and thriller, that breaches the subject of artificial intelligence. I haven’t read the other books in the series but I thought the character development was great and it had some twists that left me thinking.
Loved the Premise and the writing of this book. The pages flew by as I discovered that Michael and Alex Nicholas were 2 brothers I would not forget. An attack on the White House is diverted but it is the discovery of Alex Nicholas a protagonist that you will fall in love with, that you realize how fiction runs so close to reality. This story is fun,a page Turner and I hated for the story to end. It is part of a 4 book series,where each book stands alone. I’m off to read the others. A super read that will keep you busy while at the beach or as a great escape from your every day world. Terrific!
Is it really living if it is in the cloud? Is Alexa alive? The book gives a new look at artificial intelligence. Alex clones his personality and knowledge to survive beyond his death. The story mainly takes place after he dies. It is an interesting concept and does give me a different view of AI. I liked the whole good versus evil element to the book. It really seems that Alex was living beyond death. The book was interesting and entertaining.
About the Book: Alex Nicholas was murdered 3 years ago because one of his ex wives was bitter and so she had her mafia boyfriend kill Alex as he was eating his favorite veal parmesan. His brother, Michael, who is 10 years younger than Alex and a successful CEO takes over Alex’s illegal betting business. And here is the best part..Alex, using cutting edge technology, is now communicating with Michael and a few others via Artificial Intelligence (AI).
Now..it gets even better..a Neo-Nazi group run by a descendant of Joseph Goebbels has its own dead guy, Monsignor Schlegelberger, that is also using AI to destroy the US and Russia to get back at both countries for taking down the Nazi party in WWII.
What ensues is a plane almost hitting the White House, a potential Nuclear War and Alex the only “person” that can save the day!
“The Holy Spirit and the Internet are everywhere and yet nowhere to be seen.”
-Father Papageorge from Death in the Cloud
Have you ever read a book that as you are reading you are thinking what actors should be playing these character in the movie version? This book was that for me. The characters are all so vivid that I couldn’t help but put faces of the fictional folks with real people.
The plot was well thought out and the story action packed.
I think the author did a great job making the concept of AI understandable to someone like me who is not remotely tech savvy.
One top of all the great characters, dialogue and action, I think the whole concept of immortality, faith and how technology may affect future religious beliefs, was an intriguing theme in this book.
This one was an unputdownable read for me.
It happens sometimes, even with the best editors. I series runs out of steam. We still have our AI, Alex who is now beginning to move closer and closer to deva (and perhaps diva) status. We have Michael who is still fast on his feet, with a James Bondian luck of survival. We do have some suspense; the episode with the airliner begs for speed reading. For the most part, the reader has a rehash of previous plots without much movement in the story line. Remember that editor? Perhaps they should have insisted on a novella this time. This is not a stand alone.
Recommended for those who enjoy reading a complete series. Otherwise no.
E.J. Simon, the author of “Death in the Cloud” has written a captivating, intriguing, and intense novel. The genres for this novel are Terrorism Thriller, Conspiracy Thriller, Mystery and Thriller, and Psychological Thriller, and a little satire. The timeline for this novel is set mostly in the present and goes to the past or future when it pertains to the characters and events. The author describes his dramatic characters as complex and complicated. There is a contrast between good and evil. This is a tense novel with twists and turns and tremendous suspense. There are other books in this series, but ‘Death in the Cloud” can be read on its own.
Using the addition of the modern internet and all of its implications, the author vividly describes how humans and modern technology can either be a positive force or an evil force to deal with.
Michael Nicholas, a successful businessman has been mourning the death of his brother Alex Nicholas, who was murdered 2 years before while eating an Italian dinner in a restaurant. Suddenly Michael is confronted with the fact that Alex may be dead but is living in cyberspace. Michael’s conversations with Alex are confusing and conflicting to his wife, and others.
Michael finds himself at the White House, after an airliner, that has been missing had been headed to Washington. It seems that many things in cyberspace are not at all like they should be. Perhaps Alex will be able to fight the evil forces that are hoping for world destruction and power.
I would recommend this thought-provoking novel that is so full of tension and adventure.
A missing commercial airliner is seen hovering above the White House. The US and Russia are headed to war. The world is at the brink of a nuclear apocalypse and the responsibilty to save the world from a mass destruction hugely lies on the shoulders of Alex,an AI version of the deceased Nicholas brother who will have to face a tough choice of permanently deleting him to make that happen. This is the 4th book involving the brother duo - Michael & Alex Nicholas from the Death series which honestly i was a bit apprehensive going in thinking I would not be able to enjoy this one as much as I would like to. But this book works great as a stand-alone irrespective of the fact that it’s part of a series.I found the story slow paced at certain times again only beacuse of my limited knowledge of all things technology however the short chapters and the nonstop action made this book unputdownable.This is a highly entertaining sci-fi political thriller involving very non-conventional characters from the ones am used to reading but the remarkable character development of the protogonists made this very like-able. I'm more than intrigued now to know how this plot is going to transcend in his upcoming books of this series. Thanks for providing me an early copy in exchange for an honest review.
A taut technical thriller I couldn't put down.
Alex Nicholas is dead but lives on in cyberspace as an artificial intelligence program and may be the only thing that can save the world from nuclear annihilation.
A plane goes missing only to show up two days later trying to attack the White House.
Some nefarious actors are hell bent on starting a war between the US and Russia and they have an AI program of their own poised to make it happen.
Can Alex help stop the missiles before they reach their targets? Will he have to be deleted permanently to do so?
I really enjoyed reading this action packed novel that had me on the edge of my seat throughout. The situations and characters are believable and exciting. The writing and plot are fast and furious. The mystery and suspense are compelling.
Even though this is the fourth in a series it reads well as a stand-alone and is one that I highly recommend to those who enjoy a well thought out and executed thriller.
Death in the cloud
By E.J. Simon
A Sci-fi bust.
After a fast paced start, the book dribbles as it takes too long for the tension to build. The very slow plot makes it a tough read.
The storyline follows two brothers, one of who is dead and living in cyberspace, trying to combat a dead villain who is also living in cyberspace. In the process commercial airliner departing Moscow goes missing over France, only to appear two days later about to crash into the White House.
This latest addition to the Michael & Alex Nicholas series - which also includes Death Never Sleeps, Death Logs In, and Death Logs Out - features all the mystery, artificial intelligence, humour, food, and travel.
While it is the latest addition, it fails to keep up with the pace and tension of the earlier books.
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This title was provided by Netgalley and the publisher in return for an open and honest review.
I was not expecting to read about two people, polar opposite of each other to be scanned and then placed on the Internet as AI. That was a different take on world takeover. There were a few funny spots, where the one-man wanted to eat but as I program, that was never going to happen.
I did have a hard time seeing the US President calling a civilian direct, especially on an unsecured cell phone. Easy to read light reading.
I read the first chapter and thought hmm maybe this book is not for me. The first chapter was a person "living through his funeral". He heard his eoulogy and could feel the sods of dirt landing on his coffin. I thought maybe I would read another chapter and see if it gets better. Boy did it get better. It took me awhile to realise what was happening in the first chapter for him to feel his funeral, but once I did I was hooked for the remainder of the book. It is a book with short chapters. You think it is just a short chapter I will read more, then you think the same thing - before you know it you have read several more chapters. It hooks you in.
I did not realise until I had finished the book that this was the second book in the MIchael Nicholas series. As soon as I finished Death In the Cloud, I immediately went to find Death Never Sleeps (the first book).
I am now looking forward to the next book in the series (Putin's Poison).
I would like to thank the author E J Simon and the publisher for giving me the opportunity to read this book..
I am giving it a 4 star rating. It could possibly have been a 5 star if I had of read the first book in the series prior to this one. However, there will be others like me, who do not read them in order.
Just released yesterday!
Hot Off The Racks!!
Travel With Twists And Turns.
Book 4 in the
Michael & Alex Nicholas Series.
1. Death Never Sleeps
2. Death Logs In
3. Death Logs Out
4. DEATH IN THE CLOUD.
A commercial airliner departing Moscow is missing over France. Two days later, with world tensions at an all-time high, that same plane is headed for the White House.
Soon after, following a mysterious breach of the launch codes, US nuclear missiles aimed at Russia are poised for attack. A reciprocal attack is readied by Russia's president, Vladimir Putin. The world is on the edge of a nuclear apocalypse.
Since his murder in a Queens restaurant, Alex Nicholas has been living a virtual life in cyberspace. Suddenly he finds himself on the big screen in the White House's underground bunker, facing the President of the United States. He may be the only one who can save the world from mutual mass destruction. But to do so, he will have to allow himself to be "deleted" - this time permanently.
400 PAGES (90 chapters) OF NON STOP ACTION!! 🎬
Genre: a Technological #thriller
Can technology replace real emotions, real human interface?
What is the future of #artificialintelligence ?
This was such a page- turner!!
Loved the brotherly commaradie & bond, both brothers Alex & Michael shared.
Read 📖it to enjoy a perfect thriller based on the future of technology!
Can be read as a standalone as the author has given a brief up for the previous 3 bks in the series.
This is a fantastic techno-thriller. A war between two AIs, now that's a first. (at least in the fictional world, it is).
Well portrayed characters and a mystery that keeps one guessing till the end. Kudos to the author for coming up with a fantastic story; a mystery that has AIs, almost-nuclear-war-like-situation between two countries and an enemy wanting to destroy them all, wow!
I absolutely enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it to all thriller lovers.
I received this book through "NetGalley" Read Now program.
When I began the book, I didn't really understand what is was about. As the story went along it grab my attention and I looked forward to reading more. The interaction between Mike and Alex was quite believable and even though Alex was just AI it seemed quite real.
The depiction of the Airline attack with the introduction of Dietrich and Schlager was quite well done. It certainly leaves you wondering if something of this nature could really happen. The question still raises it head during the missile attack against Russia. The fact that an unknown party is able to hack into the missile syatem and launch an attack and there is no way to overcome it.
The conclusion was well done, and the question of Alex seemed to be left in limbo. If you enjo thrillers, then you will definitely want to read this. I recommend it highly.
Not my usual read but very enjoyable. Science fiction, artificial intelligence, Russia and the US on the verge of nuclear war with characters reminiscent of DR. STRANGELOVE, plus travel and italian meals to make you salivate, -in short, all of the elements to make for a compelling read. On a personal note, the restaurants in Queens and Astoria brought back memories from my youth-I worked in similar “ holes in the wall” with delicious food -places known only to the inhabitants of the area.