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All Systems Down

(The Cyber War #1)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  231 ratings  ·  83 reviews
24 hours.
That’s all it takes.
A new kind of war has begun.

* * *

Pak Han-Yong’s day is here. An elite hacker with Unit 101 of the North Korean military, he’s labored for years to launch Project Sonnimne: a series of deadly viruses set to cripple Imperialist infrastructure.

And with one tap of his keyboard, the rewards are immediate.

Brendan Chogan isn’t a hero. He’s an out-of-w
Paperback, 240 pages
Published February 8th 2018 by Lakewater Press
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Sam Boush Hi Rick,

Sorry it took so long to get back to you!

I like the thriller format because it brings a natural level of suspense to an already fraught situa…more
Hi Rick,

Sorry it took so long to get back to you!

I like the thriller format because it brings a natural level of suspense to an already fraught situation. And I see it more specifically as a technothriller, in the vein of Crichton or -- to a lesser degree -- Clancy. Not that I'm claiming their level of mastery. (These are the giants of this industry.) But in its handling of the topic, the book is similar.

I came up with the concept of ALL SYSTEMS DOWN after reading news articles on our international adversaries' growing cyber capabilities, especially to disrupt infrastructure. Richard A. Clarke also has a great book on cyber war that helped focus my thinking.
William I'm 8% in. Already tech inaccuracies. Not keen on war with North Korea plot especially given Mango Mussolini in the White House. …moreI'm 8% in. Already tech inaccuracies. Not keen on war with North Korea plot especially given Mango Mussolini in the White House. (less)

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Kate~Bibliophile Book Club
Feb 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
I had seen All Systems Down on Goodreads and thought it sounded like an interesting read, and I wasn’t disappointed!

Centering around a blackout across America, the reader meets the main characters just as all of the systems fail due to a virus that has bee put in there by a master hacker as part of Project Sonnimne.

All Systems Down asks the question what would you do if everything around you changed for the worst essentially. Could you survive? How would you survive if everything went dark?

All S
Indy Quillen
Sep 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Yes, I'll admit I'm a fan of the book “One Second After” by William Forstchen, where the reader follows one family, and the town they live in, through the ordeal of what life would be like after an EMP event. But “All Systems Down” is a different read. It’s a cyber tech thriller that introduces you to a cast of characters attempting to navigate through the first chaotic days after our country is brought to its knees by a coordinated attack on our power grid and technology. It then sets the stage ...more
Eric J. Gates
Aug 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“All Systems Down”, Sam Boush’s novel of a devastating cyber attack and its very human consequences, should make you think. We rely on the Internet and goods manufactured with imported electronics so heavily in our modern world that the thought of a rogue state manipulating these to our detriment is one we tend to push away from our conscious mind. Yet, as we have seen recently, nation states do engage in cyberwarfare, and they do it to covertly promote their own agendas over what we believe we ...more
Laurie Bell
Mar 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Oh my freaking gosh... Okay so apart from the nightmares I started having after only reading a few chapters? What a terrific and terrifying book.

Sam Boush has scared the daylights out of me. There is nothing more scary than life as we know it ending in an instant. Power out for a few hours? We all deal with that... but what if it's out for days on end... Everywhere? What else stops if we have no power?

I hadn't realized and now I kinda wish I didn't know.

Add to that no internet and I can't think
Dec 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
All Systems Down draws you in from the first pages – once I started reading, it was hard to put down (no pun intended). It’s sci-fi, yes, but taking place in a world that we live in today. The reality described on the book’s pages is scary on a few dimensions – one, it highlights the vulnerabilities of the modern world and shows how much we have come to rely on technology; and two, it depicts what can happen with the society should it collapse.

Watching multiple storylines unfold separately, wai
Maya Kamoshita
Dec 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Note: I was provided an advance copy for review. Opinions are my own.

All Systems Down was an enthralling read. Sci-fi and thrillers are not usually my genre of choice - but I was hooked after the first few pages! Being a Portland native, I especially loved the detailed and accurate depiction of my city - but it also made it incredibly terrifying because of the plausibility of the rapid devolution of the city and society in the wake of a massive cyber attack. Boush is a gifted writer - and I look
Gordon Gaines
Dec 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Note: I was provided an advance copy for review. Opinions are my own.

I read a good number of books, 1-2 per week. This is one of the best I've read this year. It's a page turner that starts out with a very military feel, but quickly moves into the experience of (mostly) ordinary people across the country as they deal with the collapse of infrastructure.

Highly recommended!
Jessica Belmont
Aug 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
All Systems Down drew me in from the beginning. It takes place now, in a world identical to our own, which makes it that much more thrilling. This book feels real, like this is plausible, and possibly imminent.

Each character felt like a real person. The dialogue really shined, and the personalities and reasons for being included in the story were fantastic.

This is Sam Bousch’s debut novel, which blows me away. He has really honed his writing craft, to create a realistic, well researched world wi
Rick Bava
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
All Systems Go-All Systems up---for this outstanding thriller titled--"All Systems Down," from Author Sam Boush. It is a book in the category of Tom Clancy. It is a thrill ride of a thriller. The content is up to date--the authentic nature of the book- given the times we live in --makes this a must read for fans of thrillers--and books in general. The book has a great Northwest feel, millennials will love it--and the Author has put together a data driven, entertaining book---A Must Read--and I a ...more
Kline DuPont
Feb 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
I'm not sure the science fiction in here is very apparent. Definitely some. But it's mostly just a wonderful thriller. Dark, but not too dark. Some military, but not too much. An all-around splendid read! ...more
Feb 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is my kinda book. I only wish Tom Clancy were alive to read it.
Aaron Stey
Feb 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: war, fiction, thriller, sci-fi
Some books stay with you long after you've read them. This is one such masterpiece. The cyber war seems all to plausible. The characters are fantastic, relatable, unique. ...more
Erika Johns
Feb 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Looking forward to this being a movie. Or maybe with more books in the series, a TV show. Great read!
Bernie M
Dec 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Read it in two days. Loved every word!
Jan 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If I’m being honest, rarely are my “go-to” reads shelved as “techno-thriller” or “post-apocalyptic” . . . I’m more an Edgar Sawtelle type of girl. But, at the end of the day, what I like and want is a well-crafted, thoughtful story. Lucky for me, that’s exactly what I got with this book. All System’s Down weaves a great story—one that hooks you from the start with great plot suspense, as well as deep empathy for each of the characters. I highly recommend this book and can’t wait for Mr. Boush’s ...more
Chloe Ambrose
Jan 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Full disclosure; I was provided an advance copy. Thanks to Sam Boush and Lakewater Press. This is an unbiased review.

The book doesn't have a slow or boring moment in it. From the beginning, you're drawn into a world that's identical to our own. No near future. It's just now. And you get the feeling that what's happening in the book is not just plausible but maybe even imminent.

The cast of characters is so well done. I feel like I know them personally. The protagonist, Brendan, is likeable but i
Jan 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
*I was provided an advanced copy by the publisher for a non-biased review*

I read this book in 2 days. I have 3 young kids and a job. I rarely am able to read a book in 2 days, but this book was that good. I couldn't put it down. And if I did put it down (again, 3 kids) then it obsessed over it. Even after I was done reading it, I obsessed over it. I really hope it isn't the last book by Mr. Boush, but since it says #1, I am hopeful.

Set in Portland, Oregon, many local landmarks came up which rea
Derrick Moore
Jan 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
I can't wait for the next book in the series. One of the best books I've read in years! ...more
Mar 06, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rejected
ARC courtesy

Starts out with acceptable but limited prose. The character of the jet pilot has promise, then technical stupidity happens, then even more. Then wrong nomenclature. I can see this is going to get ever more stupid with "satellites crashing to earth".

North Korean hackers can do serious damage to the world, but nothing like this.

Did not finish. Waste of time.
David M
Dec 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky to get an advance copy of this fast paced novel. Loved the characters and the story line. Very believable and meticulously researched, which is a big plus in the techno thriller genre. Clancy fans won’t be disappointed.
Kristin Kaleb
A fantastic page-turner. I roared through this one; loved it! A cyber war takes out critical infrastructure across the country. Not sure if I'd call it sci-fi but it was definitely a thriller. 10 out of 10. ...more
Jan 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
All Systems Down is the first fast-paced post apocalyptic thriller in The Cyber War series written by author Sam Blush. Thanks to NetGalley and Lakewater Press for the advance copy.
Review to come.
Dec 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have been reading a lot of dystopian novels lately and this one ended up being one of my favorites. It started a bit slow, but the author did a pretty good job at giving us enough background of each of the characters/families to get to know them and what drives them but not too much to get lost in the details. I'm usually not a fan of jumping back and forth to follow different people throughout the same story, but I really liked seeing the different perspectives of what was going on and enjoye ...more
Feb 03, 2018 rated it liked it
This is the first book in this series. Which, I thought was a good showing for the first book. The further I got into the story, the more it picked up speed in action and intensity. Although, as much as there was intensity, it did not hold up fully for me. The issue for me were the characters. They did not engage me. Also, if I wanted to like them, I found most of them annoying. In fact, I felt bad for Brendan that he was stuck with some of the people.

My favorite parts involved the North Korean
Feb 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am not usually a reader of thrillers, but I must say that I really enjoyed this one. I found that I couldn't read this book before bed, because I'd stay up too late, reading to see what would happen next! The story is both frightening and realistic: During the time I was reading this, I found myself getting a bit nervous whenever my internet connection was too slow. The characters were well-developed and, as a long time resident of Portland, I found the little details about the city really won ...more
Kristine Nguyen
Jan 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
All Systems Down makes you realize how dependent we are on technology, and when left without it, how vulnerable we can be. It is so terrifyingly realistic and will prompt you to put together your own cyber war emergency kit! I am looking forward to the next book and hoping that this becomes a movie!
Jan 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book. New author for me to read and I found it engaging and enjoyable. Would recommend to fans of this genre!!
Emma Donovan
Aug 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: harddrive, kindle
I have to admit I found the first few pages of the book a little tough going - a lot of techno-speak that was a little confusing and some I just didn't feel needed to be there.  However, I pushed past that and am SO VERY glad I did.

I read this is pretty much one sitting throughout the day whilst volunteering at an event that required not a to of effort on my part - perfect reading time!

I loved the different stories that you follow and enjoyed that we were looking at the same thing from different
Apr 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
My Recommendation: READ IT. I don't read many books like this and have never read Clancy (who apparently people are comparing Boush to), but I thoroughly enjoyed this and could see a lot of potential in Boush. Hopefully, I'll notice when the next book comes out and I'll pick it up.

My Response: When the publicist reached out to me with this way back in December I wasn't 100% sure I wanted to read it.* At the same time, I knew I wanted to try to read a little broader this year so I said yes anyway
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Sam Boush has worked as a wildland firefighter, journalist, digital marketer, and founder/owner of a successful marketing agency. Beyond writing, he enjoys taking advantage of the Pacific Northwest through backpacking, surfing, skiing, and more.

His past work as a journalist won him awards from the Society of Professional Journalists and Oregon Society of Professional Journalists. Currently, he's

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