Book Review: “Simple Simon” by Ryne Douglas Pearson

Simple Simon by Ryne Douglas Pearson Genre: Thriller Publisher: Schmuck & Underwood Publication Date: July 1, 1996 Amazon Description “He’s brilliant. Innocent. Helpless. And he’s marked for death… It took years to develop. Cost billions to perfect. A cryptographic system so advanced it safeguards the United States’ most vital secrets. It is secure. Impenetrable. Until sixteen year old autistic savant Simon Lynch happens upon a forgotten snippet of code, his damaged brilliance breaking the cipher with ease and unwittingly marking him for death. Soon, elements of a pathological government security apparatus are hunting him, as is a beautiful, sadistic Japanese assassin working for enemies who will stop at nothing to learn the secret locked in Simon’s mind. Only FBI Agent Art Jefferson stands between the innocent young man and these corrupt forces, putting his career, his freedom, and his life on the line to save Simon.” My Review I picked up this book because of its focus on an autistic teen and because I like thrillers. The autistic character was written with depth and understanding without becoming a study in how to write a “special” character. “Simple” Simon was anything but, and his key involvement in the plot was natural and engaging. Art Jefferson, the veteran FBI agent whose latest investigation introduces him to Simon, is a strong figure with the right attributes to meet the challenges presented to him. His short but intense relationship with Simon was moving and really made me care about what happened to these characters. Simon was not the only special one in the book, however. One of the villains, Keiko Kimura, was quite mentally...