The White Tower
November 27, 2012 — 22:16

Author: Dorothy Johnston  Category:   Comments: Off

The White Tower

The White Tower is the second book in my Sandra Mahoney series. Sandra and Ivan Semyonov have joined forces, personally and in a business sense as well. They’re living together and trying to run a computer security consultancy, and their lives are complicated by the arrival of a daughter. Sandra is hired by a grieving mother to find out why her son has committed suicide, apparently as a result of an interactive computer game. Disturbingly, his ‘suicide’ is a bizarre echo of his execution in the game; his only note a digital mirror image of his own death.

The game has been shut down, but Sandra corresponds with some former players, who knew Niall as his on-line character, Ferdia, and tries to give his mother what support she can. She travels to Ireland to meet the owner of the game, a man called Sorley Fallon, who has suspected links with underground Irish politics.

While she is away, Ivan uncovers a list of numbers on Niall’s computer. The investigation changes direction after Sandra and Ivan learn that the numbers refer to radiation accidents involving one of the linear accelerators in the hospital where Niall worked. Pressure increases on the hospital staff, as Sandra, and her friend Detective-Sergeant Brook, discover more about them. Did Niall jump from the Telstra Tower, as the game and the evidence surrounding it suggests? Or was he pushed and, if so, who did the pushing?

The White Tower was published in the US by St Martins Press and in Australia by Wakefield Press. It was shortlisted to represent the ACT in the 2012 Year of Reading

Sue Turnbull called it ‘an artfully seductive crime story’ and described the denouement as ‘chilling, fast and furious’