Assured Destruction

Assured Destruction

by Michael F. Stewart


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You can learn a lot about someone looking through their hard drive ...

Sixteen-year-old Jan Rose knows that nothing is ever truly deleted. At least, not from the hard drives she scours to create the online identities she calls the Shadownet.

Hobby? Art form? Sad, pathetic plea to garner friendship, even virtually? Sure, Jan is guilty on all counts. Maybe she's even addicted to it. It's an exploration. Everyone has something to hide. The Shadownet's hard drives are Jan's secrets. They're stolen from her family's computer recycling business Assured Destruction. If the police found out, Jan's family would lose its livelihood.

When the real people behind Shadownet's hard drives endure vicious cyber attacks, Jan realizes she is responsible. She doesn't know who is targeting these people or why, but as her life collapses Jan must use all her tech savvy to bring the perpetrators to justice before she becomes the next victim.

"Stewart seamlessly incorporates the fast-paced world of social media into a unique writing style that perfectly captures the world of a modern teen...
"Many teenage girl readers will find unconventional, strong Janus to be an intriguing role model, but as a clever, talented and often slightly dark hacker, she transcends gender stereotypes and will find fans among teen boy readers as well.

"A fun, fast-paced thriller guaranteed to distract teens from Facebook for at least a little while." --Kirkus Reviews

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780981269948
Publisher: Non Sequitur Press
Publication date: 02/25/2013
Pages: 192
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.44(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Michael F. Stewart is the author of the Assured Destruction Series. He likes to combine storytelling with technology and pioneered interactive storytelling with Scholastic Canada, Australia and New Zealand's, anti-cyberbullying program Bully For You. He has authored four graphic novels with Oxford University Press Canada's award winning Boldprint series. Publications of nonfiction titles on Corruption and Children's Rights published by Rubicon Publishing as well as early readers with Pearson are all forthcoming in 2014 and 2015.

For adults, Michael has written THE SAND DRAGON a horror about a revenant prehistoric vampire set in the tar sands, HURAKAN a Mayan themed thriller which pits the Maya against the MS-13 with a New York family stuck in the middle, 24 BONES an urban fantasy which draws from Egyptian myth, and THE TERMINALS-a covert government unit which solves crimes in this realm by investigating them in the next. This series has already been optioned for film and television.

Customer Reviews

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Assured Destruction 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
MonicaFMF More than 1 year ago
Janus Rose has a lot to deal with-high school, fake friends, boys, her mom's MS, working at her mom's shop...Now someone seems to be attacking her online personas/friends. Who and why could this be happening? A complex yet easy to follow multi-leveled mystery weaves through a variety of topics and helps develop plot as well as characters individually and together. Characters are dynamic, authentic, emotional, and caring. Overall, a delightful read.
MasonCanyon More than 1 year ago
Sixteen-year-old Janus ‘Jan’ Rose and her mother own and operate Assured Destruction, a business that repairs/recycles or shreds your computer depending on what you need, out of their home. They are barely managing to stay afloat. With her mother in a wheelchair from MS, Jan does all she can to help out. But being a typical computer savvy teenager, Jan has a secret. Spending long hours with the computers, Jan has created her own ‘computer family’ from the hard drives she has neglected to shred. She has given each their own identify and calls them the Shadownet. Since the hard drives are technically stolen, if the police found out the family would lose their livelihood. When vicious cyber attacks begin to happen to the real people behind Shadownet’s hard drives, Jan knows she’s responsible and must do something to stop it. Jan has to use all her tech savvy to find who’s responsible before she is the next victim and the attacks become deadly. Not being very computer savvy, I was a bit apprehensive about reading a story where the protagonist is a tech wizard of-sorts. But the synopsis drew me in and I was captivated. Author Michael F. Stewart has done a great job of creating a realistic teenager in Janus. Between her computer skills and her adolescent problems, Janus represents a typical teenager in so many ways. All of the characters are well-developed and engaging including the computer personalities. ASSURED DESTRUCTION flows smoothly and at a steady pace. While the story is computer-related, you don’t have to be a computer geek to follow along. There are red herrings to keep you guessing in this intriguing YA mystery. If you’ve ever wondered what your teenager was really doing on the computer, this story will definitely get your attention. ASSURED DESTRUCTION is an entertaining read with a protagonist you’ll want to see return in story after story. FTC Full Disclosure - I requested this book as part of the author’s virtual blog tour. A digital eBook copy of the book was sent to me by the tour promoter in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.
vvb32 More than 1 year ago
Loved the wild ride this story takes you on.  The main character, Janus, is a tough cookie who cruises the internet world with ease. As Jan's online presence takes a dangerous turn, Jan takes on an offline mystery adventure. This is a hacker story that ends well.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book. Well written, kept my attention.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a great story. Much better than I expected. Lots of teenage angst but presented in a very interesting way. Great characters with some plot twists and turns make this an excellent read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The character of Janus is well developed as a tech-savvy teen with complex emotions and desires. I enjoyed watching her develop as the story unfolded. The story is fast paced. The mystery is intriguing and kept me guessing to the end. The only serious flaw is that the love interests are 2-dimensional and don't seem completely realistic. Don't let the technical jargon scare you off. It is a truly enjoyable read, even for an adult. I plan to read more by this author. JB
BuriedUnderBooks More than 1 year ago
I have to admit to being just a bit worried in the early pages of Assured Destruction when I found myself reading quite a bit of technical jargon about computers. I’m not precisely computer-illiterate but I’m no tech-savvy geek either. Some of what Janus was up to had me doing a little head-scratching but, after a while, I got in the swing of things and, by the end of the book, I realized Mr. Stewart had actually taught me a thing or two, never a bad outcome. Jan is the stereotypical poster child for the IT whiz (usually a guy so having the protagonist be a girl was refreshing) living in his parents basement, socially awkward, chowing down on pizza. As a matter of fact, the likeness is almost funny but, at the same time, it’s sad because the circumstances of her life have isolated her somewhat from her peers. Still, she seems to fit in well enough at school and there is no serious friction with the other kids so, then, one has to wonder why she has set up such an elaborate artificial social world. The answer to that is easy when you consider her home environment. Jan’s strength and appeal for me lay in her high intelligence (even when she does some really dumb, unthinking things) and in her essential goodness—she has no intent to hurt anyone. I came to really like this girl but she’s the only character that I thought was well-developed. I just didn’t have any real connection to anyone else, especially the two potential love interests who, to me, were pretty interchangeable. When you get right down to it, I never felt anything about which boy would win her heart, if either, because neither was much more than two-dimensional. Funnily enough, the characters that did stand apart a little for me were her creations, particularly Heckleena and Gramps. That in itself is a sad commentary on Jan’s life, isn’t it? When it became apparent that a serious crime was taking place, I was very surprised at the truth of what was going on although I did think it was a bit contrived because the bad guy’s ultimate goal really wasn’t necessary for the continuation of his “business”. That’s okay, though, because it still made for a good story with a few nailbiting moments and the pleasure of being alongside Jan as she figures out what to do. This is one smart cookie and she’s strong-willed, too. No wonder I like her so much and am looking forward to reading Script Kiddie and With Zombies ;-)
Jazzie More than 1 year ago
A definite enjoyable and thrilling read! In today's technical world, anything can happen and that's what happened to Jan. Jan is extremely talented with computers and creates her own "world" with it. Assured Destruction does touch on an issue of "cyberbullying" that many teenagers suffer today. I loved that that Michael F. Stewart created a story with strong characters which made it encouraging that youths today can stand up against bullying. Although Jan and her mother has suffered hardships, Jan does not allow that to bring her down, but she gains strength because of it. She knows that she has a lot of responsibilities, especially since her mother is sickly. But a cyber attack on her challenges her to face the mistakes she's made and find out who and why she has been targeted. An incredibly thrilling and suspenseful storyline that kept me guessing the "whodunit" question. With well developed characters and descriptive settings, Michael F. Stewart definitely kept me wondering who was behind these cyber attacks on herself and her could be anyone! What a mystery to solve...with a little suspense and danger!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was pleasently surprised. A good read. AD
WonderWmn More than 1 year ago
Amazing Read!!! First I want to thank the author Michael F Stewart for providing me a copy of his work for an honest and impartial review, second I want to say WOW! I just finished the last page of Assured Destruction and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series! I’m not a big computer guru, but the author had me captivated from the get-go. Assured Destruction…the name of a computer recycling company…also the title of completely erasing ones hard drive. Did you know there are special machines that just tear apart ones hard drive like a paper shredder? Honestly, I never really thought of it before and now I would love to see one in action. Well, the main character of this story, Janus, is a teen computer genius hacker extraordinaire. She can do things that make her teachers envious. This story tells you what could happen if you don’t do something that you should have done in a way that keeps you glued to the pages. I’m a computer user. Don’t ask me how to program one, don’t ask me about binary codes, I’m the hands on type. Give me something, don’t give me a manual and let’s see what I can do with it. You do not need a computer science degree to follow along with this story because the author guides you along so well that you actually start to know what he’s talking about. This was a refreshing YA read. You don’t feel dumbed down to, you aren’t caught up in romantic teenage angst and you don’t want to strangle the characters for their behaviors. Like I said, refreshing! You root for Janus, while also wanting to ask her what the heck she was thinking in the first place, but knowing that she’s past that point, you are straight back at rooting for her and you feel like you are right there with her the entire time instead of feeling like an outsider looking in or a third wheel. Oh, and when you think you know who’s doing everything to her, there is a twist and you are on to your next suspect. What didn’t I like? Hmmmm….I’m thinking….you know what? I can’t think of a single thing that I didn’t like. All the characters were well done, descriptions were in place perfectly, and the storyline wasn’t faulty at all. Oh, I know…I don’t’ like that I have to wait until July for book 2! I’ve put it on my “to be read” list and will jump on it as soon as it’s available. Who do I recommend this to? Everyone from the age of 14 on up. Why not younger? There is a reference to a naked female pic of a high school teen being posted which than refers to child pornography but goes no further into description than that. Unfortunately, it’s something that’s been happening more and more with teens in the age of cell phones, texting, etc. I also recommend this to anyone that likes a good mystery. Assured Destruction will not let you down!
Ginas-Library More than 1 year ago
This was a quick read and highly enjoyable. Jan Rose is not your typical teenage girl, she is a computer genius. Jan helps her mom with the family business of destroying and recycling old computers. Jan has created her own online world from hard drive she was suppose to destroy. The character of Jan really evolves as the book goes on. She starts out as a being bitter she has to help out her mom who is suffering from MS and the family business. In the end she realizes she needs to show her love for her mom more, and she can actually help others with her computer skills. There is even teenage love in the story. I was shocked to see who was responsible for the cyber attacks against Jan. I also think it was very creative of her to figure it out and bring attention to who was behind it. There is so much more I'd love to say about this book but it would give away from the story for others that haven't read it yet.