In The Machine Murders, data scientist Manos Manu arrives on the Greek island of Mykonos to attend a friend’s luxurious wedding, but soon finds himself on the hunt for a serial killer. The murderer abducts his victims, runs their body through with chains and sinks them offshore attached to a buoy scrawled with the word “FREE”.
Local police find plenty of clues: boat rentals and hotel reservations, DNA samples and last sightings. But when the murders start making the rounds of social media, they’re in over their head.
Enter Manu, a data scientist who gave up lucrative Silicon Valley for Interpol only so he could freely “run multiple models on human actors”. His problem now? Every move he makes is met with suspicion: his wealthy friends question his career in law enforcement, and the Greek police are baffled by his methods. His machine learning system tracks online media use to find killers, but it’s untested. He needs datasets, but they’re classified. And Interpol headquarters in Singapore don’t like him squandering resources or – much worse – exposing the entire program to the scrutiny of global media.
But the victims multiply. The crisis deepens. And Manu’s machine learning models plunge them into data correlations impossible to fathom.
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My Thoughts about Machine Murders
The Machine Murders is a fantastic read! I downloaded the audiobook and the narrator did Abazis’s thrilling tale justice. Abazis is off to a great start to a brand new technothriller crime series following intelligent tech guru Manu.
The plot in this book was intriguing with just the right blend of suspense and action. I was happy to see that the machine learning system Manu built is actually something I could see used in real life. Manu is a great main character. He’s intuitive, dedicated to his work, and has a humility that makes it hard not to like him. As the book goes on, you learn how educated and creative he is. If you know any software engineers (like my husband) you know the thrill they get out of creating something from scratch. You could say creating programs and apps are form of art. Especially AI programs.
Things get real when the Chinese government, Interpol, and your Silicon Valley CEO type tech mogul intertwine. I liked how Manu defies the “by the book” way of solving murders. There are a few bumps along the way because nobody has ever worked with a program like Manu’s. But, the end does a great job of tying everything together while leaving the reader waiting for more.
Overall, The Machine Murders is a solid start to the series and I’m excited to see what Abazis has waiting for readers in the next book!
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