Sunday, March 7th, 2021
Bitcoins, Shitcoins, North Korea
Hunt the billions treasure of "Montecrypto"!
By Thomas Badtke
When the billionaire Hollister dies, nobody suspects that the world is on the brink of an economic abyss. Hollister's fortune, worth billions of dollars, is invested in bitcoins and his wallet has to be found. Secret services, mafia, terrorists are hot for "Montecrypto". Tom Hillenbrands Ed Dante stays cool.
A few years ago, only quirky tech nerds could do anything with the word bitcoin. Today that has changed: the oldest and best-known cyber currency has become the most important crypto currency in the world, its price exploded, trading above the 50,000 dollar mark for the first time this year. The quirky idea of a Japanese has become a global phenomenon. Bitcoin has reached the general public, it has become socially acceptable. It is not surprising that the German bestselling author Tom Hillenbrand is taking on the topic – and that in the end another tech thriller with impact in Hollywood blockbuster format is not coming out either.
Greg Hollister is a hobbyist, a programmer, a hacker: at the age of eleven he wrote his first computer programs. When he was 13, he built a robot that earned him the NASA Young Talent Award. But he also knows that it is much easier to steal bitcoins than most people realize. Hollister founds a startup, develops a cryptocurrency that is actually not one, but still makes him a rich man and his company Juno a Wall Street heavyweight.
Tales of "Montecrypto"
Hollister becomes a visionary of the crypto industry, a celebrated idol – and crashes on a plane. All that remains is a few human remains and the fact that there must be a billion dollar fortune somewhere. Let Ed Dante find it.
Dante comes from Wall Street, where he used to make millions, plowing through the books of an investment bank, the end of which then triggered the financial crisis and shook the world. Now the native Englishman is a private investigator. Rather "private investigator in delicate financial matters". Now, commissioned by Hollister's sister, he is supposed to search for the assets that are now known as "Montecrypto" in the internet and in the media: several billion in Bitcoins.
Dante agrees and begins to investigate. He meets a blogger who seems to be spying on him. He travels from Los Angeles to Europe and back to the USA, to New York. He gets to know the fintech world. He learns what a bitcoin is, what a shitcoin, what a blockchain. He, who describes himself as a "discerning alcoholic", always has a hip flask with a good scotch and starts the evening with a couple of Black Russian cocktails, becomes a modern Indiana Jones on the hunt for that Crypto treasure.
But Dante quickly becomes the hunted: the bald man with a distinctive trilby hat follows up on traces, finds clues, brings them into context and gets on the trail of an ever-growing matter, a matter that threatens to get completely out of hand and claims human lives . Secret services step in. The mafia suddenly gets involved, even North Korea seems to have its fingers in the game and also a coin community, whose desire for discovery is fueled by Hollister videos that suddenly become public.
Viva los Cryptos!
Tom Hillenbrand, born 1972 in Hamburg, studied European politics and volunteered at the Holzbrinck School for Business Journalism. He worked for various media as an editor and department head. He became known as a writer with his Xavier Kieffer crime series. His scifi thrillers "Drone Land" and "Hologrammatica" are award-winning bestsellers.
This mixed situation and wild chase across continents really brings back memories of Indiana Jones, an Indy 4.0. But it is also reminiscent of Dan Brown and his Robert Langdon character, this quirky professor who has to save the world from ruin with intellect and the gift of combination. Dante also has a dry sense of humor and an occasional harsh pronunciation. The fact that Dante loves punk music and lets himself be filled with songs by the "Dead Boys" and "Rage Against The Machine" fits perfectly into the picture.
In general, the characters that Hillenbrand brings up in "Montecrypto" are skilfully drawn characters with rough edges that make them likeable and lovable, so that the book becomes a classic page turner and Hillenbrand himself becomes a German Dan Brown. Once you have read the first ten pages, "Montecrypto" is only put down again when the last sentence has been read: "Arm in arm, go up the beach."
Arm-in-arm? Oh yes, of course there is also a woman at his side for Dante, one who is familiar with coins, click farms, data encryption and cyberspace. She is the bella figura on the old punk's side. It opens Dante doors to new worlds. He shows her that apart from blogs, forums and chats there is also a real world. Hillenbrand's "Montecrypto" blurs the lines between cyber future and digital reality. This is the real treasure of "Montecrypto" and its readers have already found it.
. (tagsToTranslate) Economy (t) Thriller (t) Bitcoin (t) Cryptocurrencies (t) Reviews