“Wired” by Julie Garwood has the relationship dominant to the story. This novel has much more romance than suspense along with humorous scenes, a welcome relief from the tension of thrillers.
The book features a computer nerd, Allison Trent who gives geeks a good name. She is beautiful, painfully shy, models on the side, and is not a phony; yet, relaxes by writing computer codes and working out puzzles. Determined to make a name for herself in a male dominated field she uses her intellectual ability to see patterns that no one else can decipher. Her dream is to create a program that could revolutionize the tech industry.
Garwood’s writing process begins with “the visualization of a scene and then I am able to write the rest of the story. In Wired I had a vision of this young girl watching TV and saw that hackers had stolen the money of nursing home patients. Allison can relate because she grew up totally powerless and now wants to become their champion. I want her to be in more books since I like how her mind works. What I enjoy doing is bringing back my characters in future books in a reunion of sort.”
While contemplating her options after she graduates college Allison is offered a position in the FBI to track down a leaker, a traitor. Able to focus and believing in her own capability she accepts the job on one condition, receiving immunity. Never keeping a penny for herself, Allison has hacked into accounts of bad guys who steal money and she returns it to the victims anonymously. In a sense she has become a modern day Robin Hood.
Having been a history major the author sees similarities between that and computer coding. “I loved the medieval period because it was so disciplined just like computers where progression is important. I came to this technology late because I was not computer savvy. In fact, I still use a typewriter for my books, but now use a computer for everything else. I think all young girls should be exposed to computer codes and I find it fascinating myself.”
A sub-plot will remind readers of the Cinderella story. Allison seems unable to stand up to her Aunt Jane and Uncle Russell. If she did not follow their demands they would go into an angry rage. To avoid confrontation she would agree to do what was asked of her. A quote from the book hammers this point home, “It was so much easier to get along and do what was demanded than to argue.”
The male lead is FBI Agent Liam Scott, first introduced in “Fast Track.” Working closely with Allison he becomes attracted to her, but understands he has the power to crush her. Liam is sophisticated and worldly, the ultimate alpha-male, while she is inexperienced and naive.
“Wired” is an excellent escape novel. This story blends humor, romance, and likeable characters that are wired in their passions, interests, and fondness for each other.