You must meet Fran. Who is she you ask? Fran is the world's first alternate intelligence, a laptop computer with not only a brain but a heart, not to mention tons of attitude. Not many people are supposed to know about her before the Turing Competition, but too many do, and some of them are willing to kill or worse to steal her away from Bella Quintera, her maker. Daniel Champlain, once upon a time, was involved with Bella, but scandal drove them apart. Now, a clue ties Bella to a case the special agent is working on, and they are thrown together once more, reunited professionally and personally on a quest to save Fran from Lokus, a diabolical hacker who wants to use her to throw the world into computerized chaos. In a chase that goes from the real world to the virtual one, Daniel, Bella, and Fran are in a fight for their lives.
***** On many levels, this is a wonderful book. The action and suspense keep you on the edge of your seat; the complexity of the plot keeps you mentally engaged, and then there is the sheer fun. Fran frankly steals the show with her candid wit and innocence. If Artoo Detoo could talk, he might sound just like her. She's definitely one of the best AI's ever created. *****