by Roland Hughes

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    Roland Hughes's Preface in his book "Infinite Exposure" begins with "This book is a work of fiction. It uses many historical events, news articles, and company names to build a time line necessary for projection forward. Without using many of these actual names and quotes, it would be difficult to build the sense of realism that gives credibility to the outcome. There is no slander or malice intended. Indeed this book is intended to be a wakeup call for both an industry and a country. Reading through the book, I found Hughes's writing to indeed be very close to reality. The occurrences in the book mimic existing situations in the world and the resulting consequences are not desirable by any means.

    The basic premise of Hughes's book is how developing data centers and sending IT jobs overseas is detrimental to the future of the world. The result of this cost-cutting measure is the biggest al-Qaeda attack in history, and nuclear war. As anyone who has ever called for technical support on a computer or other product knows, overseas centers are a current and prevalent fact of life. I could go on for pages and pages about what I think about overseas support centers but this is not the place for that. However, Hughes's fictional account of what the resulting effects of this money-saving action could be is a frighteningly realistic possibility.

    On the title page it is stated that, "The book is meant to be a warning of what very well may happen if policies, laws, and business directions are not changed quickly." I think that this book would be a relevant read to anyone who has ever pondered what the effects of sending jobs offshore may be and to those that have fears about the future of the world. Hughes does a great job of presenting a detailed account of just how everything may unfortunately play out. The writing is interesting and will definitely get the reader's attention and open their eyes to changes that need to be made. For those that are up-to-date on current events, the scenarios presented in the book will hit all too close to home. Hopefully the events that occur in the fictional "Infinite Exposure" will not become a reality in the not-too-distant future.

    Brown Levine
    Independent Professional Book Reviewers

    Posted April 30, 2009, 12:57 PM EST: In Infinite Exposure, author Roland Hughes portrays the global activities of a variety of less than savory groups. These activities culminate in a perfect storm of terror against the world banking system. Combining historical facts and philosophical theory, this work of fiction offers frightening scenarios for the future of the global community. The story opens with the capture of Nedim, an al-Qaeda operative who becomes a valuable asset to a group whose mission is to collect members of the terrorist group. Nedim believes himself to be a "good Muslim" even though he does not buy completely into all of the tenets of his religion (e.g. martyrdom or the seven virgins promise). This character lays the groundwork for a story that has a number of interconnected plots played out by an ensemble of personalities with complicated personal and professional lives. While Nedim is adjusting to life under surveillance, he secretly informs one of his al-Qaeda cohorts, John, of his situation. Reacting quickly, John acquires a new identity and relocates to India where he stumbles upon an opportunity at an American bank's off-shore data center where "roughly one-third of the world's money supply" would soon be passing through the system. On another level of the multiple sub-plots, human organs are being harvested and sold to the wealthy and desperate on the black market. Hughes has done extensive research in putting this book together. It is steeped in history and political theory while also rife with unusual and flawed characters who have familiar and often disheartening traits. The author skillfully incorporates his research into the book without overshadowing the plot. This is a long story, but it commands the reader's attention and will appeal to history and political buffs. It may also attract conspiracy theorists. Infinite Exposure is an insightful and powerful look at terrorism and the vulnerability of a post-911 world. I highly recommend it.

    Reviewed by: Sarah Moore

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  • You can imagine a suitcase exploding in the middle of Times Square, slaughtering hundreds of tourists and commuters in its wake. We have seen the aftermath of a suicide bomber who makes a violent statement at a crowded marketplace in Baghdad. But, how many of us have contemplated the possibility of a terrorist plot that does not involve a single missile or IED? In his compelling novel Infinite Exposure, Roland Hughes challenges his readers to look at a world in which technology, economics, and old-fashioned greed merge to spark the Armageddon in a way that, although perhaps much different than most of us have imagined, seems all too plausible.

    At the heart of the plot in Infinite Exposure is the desire by Kent Braxton, a business school graduate eager to move up the management ranks of First Global Bank, to find some cost-cutting measures for his company and therefore earn the promotion and larger salary that he craves. His solution, marketed to him by Big Four Consulting, is to consolidate all of the bank's data centers to one location in India. Now, one-third of the world's money supply will be traveling through a place in which the workers receive little training and are subject to minimal security checks, and where al Qaeda can easily infiltrate. The consequences of this na've and ill-informed decision result in a run on money and resources that is catastrophic.

    Hughes lends substantial credibility to his work through the ease with which he employs the language of computer systems and data networks in his writing. As someone who admittedly is not well-versed in these fields, I found my literary comfort level stretched when reading the technical details in Infinite Exposure. However, I also realized that I was reading the work of someone who approached the dire situation he lays out in his book with the expertise to know that the scenario is not necessarily restricted to the world of fiction. While I may not have understood every reference to backup media and terminal emulators, I became convinced of the warning that Hughes sends us in the pages of his novel.

    Beyond detailing the technological manipulations that take place on a global scale, Infinite Exposure puts forth questions of ethics and international policy that should result in its readers looking at the stories on the 24-hour news networks from a different perspective. How is the drive to relocate our businesses to offshore sites in order to increase the profit margin opening the doors for terrorists to infiltrate our financial systems? What happens when we allow corporate greed to take precedence over sound and informed decision-making? What are the consequences of partnering with strange bedfellows, such as Nazis who want to harvest the organs of captured terrorists, when a shared enemy is being hunted?

    As someone who always has been drawn to novels with a basis in history or actual world events, I was naturally curious about the premise put forth by Roland Hughes in Infinite Exposure. It did not take long for his masterful writing and chilling use of realistic scenarios and personalities to engage me fully in the storyline. While not a book that you can curl up in a chair and read in one Sunday afternoon sitting, Infinite Exposure will drive you forward through each new chapter as the simmering tension developed by Hughes slowly mounts with sophisticated craftsmanship. I strongly encourage everyone to read Infinite Exposure by Roland Hughes and then decide if our collective fear over national security threat levels has overlooked a more dangerous attack than any of us have imagined. Review