JPEG by Patrick McLaughlin, Ó Braonáin Greg
Professional surf photographer Shawn Pérez, on assignment for Deep Surf Apparel to a remote Pacific island, encounters an isolated tribe. When he naturally snaps a photo of their spiritual leader, their reaction is life-threatening and gives Shawn something to think about after his guide tells him, “Shawn, they think your pictures steal men’s souls.”
Years later, Dr. Sally Evans, Shawn’s ex-girlfriend and a research scientist at Photon Corporation, develops the Sentient camera for the Defense Intelligence Agency for purposes of positively identifying terrorists from high above with drone aircraft. Dr. Evans lends Shawn one of the Sentient prototypes hoping he can refine the technology from a photographer’s perspective.
Major Thomas Craig, a U.S. government operator or assassin, is assigned to work beside Dr. Evans to develop the Sentient. Craig knows the whereabouts of the world’s most dangerous terrorists and must use the Sentient’s full potential to avoid a horrific terrorist strike.
Meanwhile, Shawn uses the Sentient to photograph Drake Powers, the world’s #1 surfer and Shawn’s best friend, as Drake attempts an impossible maneuver at a big wave event. Drake falls short and Shawn’s life is suddenly thrown into uncertainty. When faced with the resulting dilemma, Shawn learns the true potential of the Sentient and powers locked within.
As Major Craig’s mission deteriorates and his options disappear, both Craig and a Yemeni sleeper cell decide Shawn’s discovery is what they need to deliver the final blow to their adversaries. Bas the scientists fail, why is Shawn the only one who can make the process work?
Shawn Pérez is thrust into the worlds of quantum physics, spies, and terrorists while the odds become stacked against him as he tries to save his friend while avoiding powerful forces who want to obtain the technology.
JPEG will make you think twice before you take another cell phone photo or delete an image of a loved one. You will find yourself wondering if what we experience as our reality is only a mirage — a virtual world we live in.