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The Recruit

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CHERUB agents are highly trained, extremely talented--and all under the age of seventeen. For official purposes, these agents do not exist. They are sent out on missions to spy on terrorists, hack into crucial documents, and gather intel on global threats—all without gadgets or weapons. It is an exceptionally dangerous job, but these agents have one crucial advantage: adults never suspect that teens are spying on them.

James is the latest CHERUB recruit. He’s a bit of a troublemaker, but he’s also brilliant. And CHERUB needs him. James has no idea what to expect, but he’s out of options. Before he can start in the field he must first survive one hundred grueling days of basic training, where even the toughest recruits don’t make it to the end.

342 pages, Paperback

First published April 30, 2004

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About the author

Robert Muchamore

159 books1,759 followers
Robert Muchamore was born in Islington, London in 1972. He still lives there, and worked as a private investigator up until 2005 and the critically-accepted release of Maximum Security.

The Hunger Games phenomenon is part of the huge YA / Children's book explosion that has grown, thanks to the British Rat pack of YA authors, Anthony Horowitz, Robert Muchamore, Mark A. Cooper and Charlie Higson. We owe much of the hunger games sucess to authors such as Robert.

Robert was inspired to create the CHERUB series by his nephew after he complained about the lack of anything for them to read. CHERUB: The Recruit was Robert's first book and won the Red House Children's Book Award 2005 in the Older Readers Category.

Following the last book in the CHERUB series, it was revealed that a trilogy would be released starting from August 2011 that will focus on a new set of CHERUB agents centred upon Ryan Sharma and also involve an sixteen year old Lauren Adams. The first book will be called People's Republic.

Check out the Hendersons Boys series. Henderson's Boys is a series of young adult spy novels written by English author Robert Muchamore. The series follows Charles Henderson, the creator of the fictitious CHERUB organisation.
CHERUB is currently being made into a TV series.

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5 stars
16,537 (48%)
4 stars
11,426 (33%)
3 stars
4,856 (14%)
2 stars
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1 star
427 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,291 reviews
August 31, 2019
It was ok. Maybe not as good as the Alex Rider or the Jason Steed series, but it looks like they have about 10 books in the series. I was annoyed we are back to the Orphan thing. Like Harry Potter, Tom Swayer, Alex Rider, Annie, Magical Misfits, Young James Bond. Get over that fact and its a good book to start off a series, I will read more of this series now I read that they are going to make a TV series of this, Alex Rider and Jason Steed.
Profile Image for Hannah.
97 reviews21 followers
June 8, 2011
The more I think about this book, the more I hate it. I keep on realizing things that I wasn't aware of when writing this review. Therefore, I've decided to bump the rating down to one. The original review is below.


After debating whether to give this one or two stars, I decided on two. I didn't necessary enjoy the book, but I didn't not like it either.

The basic premises of this book is great. A secret spy organization that only employs kids to gather information. The beginning of the novel also started out strong. I found myself liking the orphaned boy with the obese mom who runs a huge crime organization. However, as soon he entered the CHERUB, things started to go downhill.

The final mission was incredibly lame. The whole book spent time building up to these huge event that the main character would take part in. But, although the scenario unique, the author could have done A LOT more to make it more dangerous, more suspenseful, more incognito.
I found I couldn't like any of the characters, especially the main one. Their personalities were... erratic to say the least. In some points, they contained the maturity of a 30-year-old, and the next they were beyond stupid. However, don't think this as character development in showing weakness. I don't believe the author intended to have such an effect.
The whole Johanna crap was so entirely random that I still can't understand it. It didn't have ANYTHING to do with the main plot. Nothing at all. For some reason, I find a 12-year-old sneaking into a 13-year-old's room and sucking some serious face a day after meeting unrealistic. I know that happens in today's culture. However, when a professional spy is sent on a mission, I would think they would be above sucking face with any random idiot. And, even if he wasn't above such, his spy supervisor and his partner would forbid him from getting so emotionally attached to someone who could jeopardize the mission.
Anyway, the writing style was also bad. There were several errors and typos in the text. Some of the sentences required a second read, which greatly disrupted the ease of reading.
Finally, I hated how emotions were discarded in this novel. The main character had to go through extensive training to become a full-fledge member of CHERUB. These tasks would've required a huge amount of physical and emotional effort. Yet, the only emotional descriptions consisted of, "It was freezing," or "I was so mad." I wanted to get into his pain. I was some in-depth descriptions of his inner and outer turmoil. However, that was not the case. There was simply a shoddy attempt at development, but, in reality, his big conflict taught him nothing. This one-dimensional character was just no relatable.

However, I give this a two star because I did want to find out how it ended. But I was relived to get it over with. The beginning started out with much potential, but it was squandered in the end.
I'm not sure if I'll give the second book another chance.
Profile Image for Amy Suto.
Author 4 books11 followers
July 7, 2011
Dear God, how is this book not a joke? How on earth did this get published?

I demand to know who encouraged Robert Muchamore to publish this. Please step forward and explain yourself.

Listen, everybody, I really wanted to love this book, I did. A young adult novel about spies who belong to an organization that doesn't exist? YES PLEASE! This is my genre, you don't even understand.

But really, the writing is unbearable to the point where you have to put down the book and take a breather in order to not smash something in a fit of frustration. Even in the "Young Adult Fluff" category, this book is ridiculous.


The book begins with this pessimistic twelve year old- aptly named James Choke- who hates everything. I hate Combined science, he whines. I hate the mean girl next to me who keeps making "Yo' momma so fat" jokes. But it turns out his Mom really is fat. She had to "order her clothes out of a special catalog for fat people" and her own son is ashamed of being seen with her.

But that stereotypical mean girl, she's more than our supposedly tough character can take. Girls teasing him apparently sends him into bouts of rage not unlike The Hulk.

So, our unstable main character shoves her up against a wall during the middle of class, where some really confusing action occurs. Apparently he shoves her against said wall, and turns her around so quickly a protruding nail gets stuck in her face.

Then his teacher tells him that "...you are in some extremely serious trouble!"

Uhh, I think that's an understatement. Filled with pointless modifiers.

So then this girl-injuring twelve year old "couldn't face up to what he'd done. No one would believe it was an accident."

You just shoved a girl's face into a protruding nail. She's bleeding and crying and all he can think is, "IT WAS AN ACCIDENT". Right, so then what happens next is an accident, too? Just blame everything on chance, why don't you!

So he then proceeds to skip the apologizing, shoves the teacher so hard that she "toppled backwards, limbs flipping helplessly in the air like a beetle turned upside down." When you (and by you I mean adult-sized teacher probably twice the size of your students) get shoved by a twelve year old, do you stumble back a step, or do you fall over because you have no sense of balance, and continue to flail like an insect?

Seriously, now. Seriously. Can this book get any worse?


Any normal abusive twelve year old who just assaulted two women would go to juvie, at the least. But no, he gets drafted into a secret spy society where he can go whine and complain about how his life sucks.

This book is a disgrace to the spy genre. It's not only implausible and stupid, but the writing is horrendous. As a young adult, I blame these kind of books for watering down the 'young adult' genre. As an aspiring writer, I had a good laugh about how awful Robert Muchamore's writing is, and have learned many lessons from reading what I could bear of this book.

Namely, abusive, angst-ridden twelve year old boys who brutalize women without remorse don't make good main characters.

Also, James Choke? Really? What kind of name is that?

I rest my case.
Profile Image for Tigerbritt.
12 reviews7 followers
April 28, 2008
This book is about a child named James Adams who's mother has just died. When his little sister got sent to live with her father, Uncle Ron, James had to move to the Nebraska House. James meets a boy named Kyle. But a while after James came to the Nebraska House, they sent him and Kyle to Cherub. It turned out that Kyle was already a part of Cherub. Cherub is a organization in the UK that takes kids and turns them into agents.They send them on top secret missions that M15 or the police don't know about. There are different shirt colors for your rank at Cherub. Orange is guest, Red is before training, Blue is for training, Grey is for completing training, Navy is for doing a good job on missions and Black is for doing an excellent job on many missions. After James completed his 100 day training, he got sent on a mission with his swimming teacher, Amy to go into a place called Fort Harmony and find out about some terriorist related activities. After they nailed all of them except for one, James and Amy went back to Cherub. When they got back, James got his Navy Shirt and Kyle got his after. Kyle was jeolous that James got his Navy Shirt before him. I liked reading this book because it was very exciting. I don't recommend this book to younger readers.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Badgerlord.
9 reviews8 followers
November 22, 2011
It is books like this that makes me wish that Goodreads gave you the choice to put your stars in negative. It's that bad. Seriously, I have cousins between 5 and 10 years old who could write a more enthralling story. I read this book on the insistance of a friend. I had to read the first to cherub books and he had to read Eragon. I got the worse deal. By far.

The setting of this book is alright; It is about a boy who is adopted into a community of child spys, where he undergoes training a goes on a mission. The alright setting is the only reason I'm willing to acknowlege having read this (that and to warn the innocent). Where he goes wrong is this; he doesn't seem to comprehend the word 'plot'. When reading this book I'm sure the author was just writing down a daydream, then went back and added the occasional part where on of the main characters is hurt or upset. Once again; younger cousin could do better. Don't get me started on the characters either; this book is on my list of book characters I'd like to meet, but only so I could punch all of them in the face for being jerks.

And don't just think 'oh, it's the first one, it'll get better'. I had to read the second book too. I'm now thinking of having therapy. It was that bad. So in short; Robert Muchamore starts with a vaguely good idea, decides he doesn't like good ideas, so he scrawled (to say 'wrote' would make a joke of authors) down a fantastical daydream he had once. If you haven't read them, for your own sake don't. And if you have; I'm sorry, you just have to live with the shame. And if for some reason (I'm suggest tumour; get that checked out) please, PLEASE, don't reccomend them to another sentient being.
Profile Image for K..
3,667 reviews1,006 followers
February 7, 2017
I had pretty high hopes for this book because the kids at school, especially the year 7 and 8 students, LOVE this series. Like, they're aaaaaaaaaaalways out on loan. And I've had multiple students tell me that these books are incredible. So I finally picked one up.

And I suspect I'm at least 20 years too old for this series, because this book was...pretty effing bad.

The basic plot is that an eleven year old boy lives with his younger sister and morbidly obese mother, who runs a shoplifting ring. When his mother dies unexpectedly, he ends up in the system while his sister is sent to live with her father. James gets into all kinds of trouble while in a group home, to the point where he ends up being recruited by CHERUB, a division of MI5 where all the agents are between the ages of 10 and 17. We follow him through basic training and his first mission.

So it sounded AMAZING. But this writing was terrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrible. It felt...like it was written by a 10 year old boy. "James had every gaming console and every game of ever and all these brand name clothes and then he learns to swim and run lots and lots". But it also felt like it was written by a 13 year old boy who's just discovering girls and dealing with body image issues? Like, as a result of the swimming and running, James - who by this point has turned 12 - ends up with a fully sick sixpack. And aaaaaaaaaaaall the girls want him.

So the premise was cool. The execution? Yeah, that sucked. I hated James. I hated the writing. I hated how slow the plot was. I hated the fact that every one of these kids is amazing at EVERYTHING with a little bit of training. Like, they all pick up languages super quickly and get their black belts in karate within 6 months of starting and everything just seems a little TOO EASY??

I did like the secondary characters, though. So...there's that.
Profile Image for claire elise.
211 reviews22 followers
November 21, 2017
Don't get me wrong- the story was good. Plot kept me interested and everything.. I think the greatest issue was I was the wrong audience.

Things I didn't like~

1. The kid was 11. Actually, except for like two other minor characters, everyone was under the age of 12-13. And if that isn't enough, they're way more worldly than preteens. They're cursing, drinking, smoking, fighting, partying, and overall way too mature in adult situations to be taken seriously as little kids.

2. The actual mission didn't start till after about 3/4s the book was over. And it was very anticlimactic. James doesn't do any fighting other than a few squabbles with some other unexperienced 11 year olds. It almost felt like the mission was background because the author was too focused on small character interactions.

3.It wasn't gripping or scary... we barely knew the bad guys. I like stories with detail. With the twists and turns that have you on the edge of your seat. This wasn't the case at all. There wasn't any guessing or suspects or covert stakeouts with close calls. James did practically nothing and it all sort of fell in his lap.

This book seems like its aimed at like 4th grade boys.
Profile Image for Mary ♥.
441 reviews101 followers
February 28, 2016
5/5 stars

"This is tough, but CHERUB's are tougher"

Funny, action-packed, heart-warming and cool, an amazing spy novel about a secret organization, consisting of kids. Do not let this fool you, there is NOTHING funny about being a spy in there, especially considering the basic training. The first book didn't have that much of adventure because our character had to go through basic training first but I am pretty sure the next books are gonna leave me breathless.

Let's talk about the characters/ships now. James is the main character, who starts off as a bully and ends up being a very kind and loyal friend. It will be a lie to say I didn't like him, although at first I really despised his behavior. He never stops fighting, is brave and wants to protect his sister. And of course likes literally every girl he sees xD

The rest of the crew is awesome as well. Kyle, Bruce, Amy, Lauren, Connor, Gabrielle, Kerry, Shakeel, Mo and Ewart are the best! They're all so funny and so dedicated to their work. Is it me or you want to hug everyone in this book? Especially Ewart, he is literally the best.

The adventure in this book got me trying to guess the ending but of course I was fooled because that's what happens when you try to guess the ending in a spy book. Overall, I am so happy I read it cause it made me smile/laugh multiple times and I just couldn't help but love it with my whole heart.

Recommended if you wanna spend time with something funny but also really cool.
Profile Image for Kate.
32 reviews2 followers
March 28, 2009
Hard to put down this one! I wish James would grow up. I really like Lauren but she can be a bit annoying
Profile Image for Mistery.
79 reviews65 followers
December 22, 2015
[wrote in Portuguese]

Opinião no The Mistery's Garden: Opinião | O Recruta, de Robert Muchamore

Há já algum tempo que tinha a intenção de ler O Recruta , de Robert Muchamore, autor da afamada série CHERUB. Esta coleção foi uma grande aposta da Porto Editora e recebeu críticas positivas tanto de jovens como de adultos. O maior elogio é comum a muitos dos leitores: tal como Harry Potter (embora só comparável a uma escala muito mais reduzida), conseguiu inserir o gosto pela leitura em milhares de adolescentes e pré-adolescentes. As aventuras de James na CHERUB tornaram-se num sucesso tão grande que Muchamore decidiu escrever mais duas séries: Aramov, protagonizada por um novo agente, Ryan, e Henderson's Boys, sobre as origens da CHERUB. A coleção foi-me também recomendada por uma amiga próxima, pelo que o meu caminho iria inevitavelmente cruzar-se com este livro e inevitavelmente acabaria por o ler. Já tinha dado de caras com um exemplar numa papelaria há já imenso tempo e tinha ficado completamente viciada em poucas páginas, contudo, nunca retomara a leitura. Decidi finalmente partir para a descoberta de um novo mundo de ação e aventura.

Mas afinal o que é a CHERUB?

A CHERUB é uma agência secreta que existe somente na imaginação do autor, pelo que os acontecimentos e cenários narrados nos livros da coleção não são reais. Ligada ao MI5, serviço de segurança britânico, a CHERUB tem o seguinte propósito: treinar crianças com menos de 17 anos para se tornar espiões em missões relacionadas com terrorismo, tráfico de droga, entre outras. O propósito de usar crianças é que os adultos não suspeitam que as mesmas se encontram a espiá-los, tornando-as valiosas no recolher de informações importantes. A ideia de se tornarem espiões entusiasmou muitas crianças, que puderam, através deste livro, pôr-se na pele de James.
James Choke é um rapaz de onze anos, perto dos doze, com uma personalidade bastante difícil: detesta a escola, está sempre a meter-se em problemas e em lutas e tem bastantes conflitos morais consigo mesmo. Em contrapartida, é brilhante a Matemática. Uma série de acontecimentos levarão a que os seus caminhos se cruzem com a CHERUB, tornando-se um dos mais recentes recrutas da agência. Para se tornar um agente, James irá passar por 100 dias difíceis de treinos que o irão levar à exaustão física e psicológica.

A ideia por detrás do livro deixava-me bastante curiosa, pois não sabia como iria ser explorada. Ao contrário de muitos livros de premissas fascinantes que acabam por se perder ao serem mal contadas ou mal aproveitadas, o mundo de CHERUB está construído de uma maneira lógica e elimina-nos logo quaisquer receios de que haja algo de menos credível, como rapazes de 12 anos a derrotar 5 adultos numa luta ou a fazer o impossível em missões que só acontecem nos filmes de espiões. Tratando-se de crianças, há certas precauções a tomar e certos valores morais a defender e foi com grande surpresa e agrado que descobri que CHERUB respeitava todas essas regras.

No entanto, não nos podemos esquecer que os protagonistas da história são adolescentes a viver os seus dramas pessoais, aventuras e desventuras. Ser um agente secreto aos 12 anos exige maturidade, responsabilidade, inteligência e bons reflexos. E certas atitudes mais infantis não excluem estas características, pois todos os adolescentes têm os meus momentos, contudo, muitos também são capazes de revelar maturidade nas alturas necessárias. Crianças e adolescentes deixam-se envolver emocionalmente mais facilmente em missões, tomam certas decisões mais parvas e é bom que os escolhidos tenham bem a noção da importância da sua tarefa. Sendo que este livro não é somente composto por cenas de ação e espionagem, mas também de momentos normais na vida de um adolescente, houveram certas coisas que me desagradaram bastante. Para mim, há uma grande diferença entre YA's (Young Adult's) e juvenis, e este livro, para mim, é um juvenil e eles sempre me desagradaram, principalmente pelos diálogos que considero serem tentativas falhadas dos autores para se aproximarem dos leitores, que não são tão falhadas assim quando se tratam de jovens de 10-12 anos com pouca experiência literária, mas que, todavia, parecem patetas quando lidas por um rapaz de 15 anos e ditas por um rapaz de 15 anos. Não achei piada aos amores e desamores de James: gosta de uma, tem um fraquinho por outra e encanta-se pela primeira que se encanta por ele. Surgiram conversas menos maduras com as quais não me identifiquei nada e não acho que me identificaria se ainda tivesse a idade das personagens. Isto dos livros juvenis, reconheço, é algo muito pessoal, no entanto.

Quanto à escrita do autor, não tenho muito a dizer. É bastante simples e não prolonga muito os acontecimentos, o que é ideal para cativar os leitores da faixa etária a que se destina e que estão agora a começar a ganhar o gosto pela leitura. Quanto a mim, prefiro emoção nos momentos, profundidade nos sentimentos, todavia, de certeza que se este livro possuísse tais características depressa maçaria um jovem leitor. Já referi que li as primeiras páginas de uma só assentada, porém, esta obra não me cativou o suficiente e, ao fim de 200 e poucas páginas, acabei por o deixar pousado por uns dias.

A personagens têm boas bases, mas não são muito desenvolvidas. Temos os rufias, os trapalhões, as duronas, os rapazes, as raparigas e por aí além. Não as achei nada de especial e nenhuma me agradou em particular. Gostei imenso de James no início do livro, parecia-me uma personagem promissora, mas com o tempo deixou de, a meus olhos, ser tão interessante; tornou-se um rapaz normal de 12 anos, cuja facilidade em superar uma grande perda não consegui entender, bem como o motivo por detrás de certas atitudes mais estúpidas. Espero, no entanto, um grande crescimento da parte dele nos próximos livros - estou curiosa para saber o desenvolvimento que terá este protagonista.

Neste livro também encontramos conteúdo mais violento, não devido à recruta e às missões, mas sim, sobretudo, às agressões físicas infligidas por jovens mais fortes a outros mais fracos - falo sobretudo do bullying e da discriminação e daqueles que, quando agredidos, retaliam da pior forma. Tal faz muito parte da vida de James, que já assumiu tanto o papel de agredido como de agressor e que foram a principal razão do surgimento de expectativas para esta personagem. Talvez a ideia de retaliar quando somos vitimas de violência física seja algo que se possa instalar na cabeça de algumas mentes que ainda são facilmente influenciáveis. Mas a violência já é algo muito comum em livros juvenis e Young Adult.

Só queria salientar um aspeto do final que também me desagradou: num primeiro livro de um série, quando ainda estamos a descobrir uma nova realidade, surgem também ideias do que poderá ou não vir a acontecer e certezas sobre aquilo que irá efetivamente acontecer. Nas últimas [10 ou 2]) páginas deu-se um acontecimento que, para mim, era óbvio que se ia suceder - só não esperava que fosse tão cedo e logo no primeiro volume. Trata-se de um único aspeto, mas uma das minhas maiores críticas ao livro - achei apressado e sem nexo acontecer logo no início da aventura.

Não me cativou particularmente, mas deixou-me deveras curiosa em relação aos próximos volumes. Espero um maior desenvolvimento de todos os aspetos da obra - apesar de receber somente 4 estrelas de 10, é de destacar que conseguiu gerar expectativas. Espero que sejam cumpridas, pois não há pior sentimento literário do que aquele em nos apercebemos de que não é tão bom quanto estávamos à espera ou gostava-mos que fosse.

Profile Image for Brendan W..
8 reviews3 followers
October 6, 2010
When my friend reccomended this book to me, I thought it would be just another author trying to rip off Anthony Horowitz with a british-teenage-spy book. What I got surprised me. This book is fresh. It’s new. It’s style is completely original. Robert Muchamore writes with a style that makes you read till you notice the sun is coming up the next morning. The intrigue that this author generates is through the roof. The recruit is so fresh, they could sell it in the produce section of the grocery store. How hasn’t this book gotten more attention? This guy has written twelve of these, and I can’t find any of them at the library! This book is like the musical group Chiddy Bang. Huge in England, about to get big in the U.S. Keep writing Mr. Muchamore!
Profile Image for emma ♖.
450 reviews57 followers
February 25, 2021
i love my little selfish asshole james <3
but jokes aside i loved this series growing up and thought james was the coolest. now a few years later i still love this series even though i can now see some faults in the writing and most of all james character. kerry and lauren are my favs and amys cool too.
Profile Image for Gaurav.
4 reviews2 followers
December 30, 2013
Who wanted to go to Hogwarts or become a wizard after reading the Harry Potter series, or go to camp Half-Blood after reading the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series? Well the The Recruit by Robert Muchamorewill leave you wanting to be a spy at CHERUB. The series is in third person but is centered around James Choke/Adams a teenager in England. Your going to want to use all the technology they use, be friends with all the students at CHERUB and take part in all the adventures. Most of the books in the 12 book series are over 350 pages and Robert Muchamore recently came out with a new series, CHERUB 2.0 which is about 10 years later. These are quality books that will leave you hooked during these holidays!

Profile Image for Skip.
3,288 reviews395 followers
March 23, 2016
2.75 stars. James Choke is a typical 11-year old boy, playing video games and barely passing school because he can't be bothered. When his criminal mother dies, he is placed in a children's home, and falls in with a bad crowd. He is then recruited for a children's spy school, the basis for which is pretty thin, where he undergoes extensive training and a grueling test of endurance to finally get assigned on a mission to stop a terror plot. I thought his friendships at CHERUB school were solid, especially his partner in the tests. The Alex Rider series is much better.
Profile Image for Ayerai G.
7 reviews2 followers
September 28, 2016
Cherub agents are kids ages 10-17 and are trained to be spies to infiltrate criminal organizations that have eluded the M15 for years. The reason? Adults never suspect that kids are spying on them.
James Choke is a twelve year old boy who tends to get in quite a bit of trouble. He lives with his mom and his sister Lauren. But James isn't an ordinary boy, he has a keen sense for math. He can solve complex math problems in a matter of seconds. James gets into a bit of trouble at school, including smashing Samantha Jennings face and fighting back to a teacher. He gets expelled from school and he doesn't want his mom to know. One day he was up in his room playing on his playstation, so he goes down stairs to get some snacks and he notices his mom laying on the couch, so he goes up to her and touches her face. It was cold and motionless, she wasn't breathing. Suddenly James realizes what happened. His mom just died. James gets sent to a foster home and Lauren goes with Ron, James hates Ron and he is worried about Lauren. James goes to his new room and unpacks. His roommates name is Kyle and he is two years older than him. James starts to hang out with a gang of bad kids, even though Kyle warned him, and they go around trashing and robbing cars. Then one day, James goes to jail. Then one day he wakes up and he doesn't know where he is. He is wearing an orange T-shirt. Nobody would talk to him. They would all just look at him and say, "Can't talk to orange shirts." So he gets sent to a gut called Mac and he explains that he is on Cherub grounds and that they chose him and all that. Then Mac asks James a question that could change his life forever. Read the book to find out.
I liked the fact that there is this secret organization that uses kids as spies, I think that is so cool. The only thing that I don't really like is that there are quite a bit of bad words. At times I was really scared, sometimes I was super curious, and other times it made me feel a bit sad. If you like the Alex Rider series you will like this book. I would compare this book to the Alex Rider series.
Profile Image for Morgane.
27 reviews
February 27, 2023
Qu’est-ce que j’aime ce livre oh lala
Comment ça me fait trop plaisir de replonger dans cette histoire, par contre ça me rend trop triste le perso principal il a 12 ans ptn 😭 quand je les lisais avant j’avais encore espoir que je puisse devenir agent secrète mdr maintenant j’ai raté ma chance 😂
Trop hâte de tous les relire là !!
Profile Image for Sari  .
31 reviews
August 21, 2022
most surprising part is that the child spy agency has an ethics commission
Profile Image for DiZagalo.
19 reviews
August 22, 2017
James era um rapaz normal, mas depois de um acontecimento inesperado foi "contratado" por uma associação chamada CHERUB.
Depois de passar cem dias de tortura num ginásio (que mais parecia uma base militar) conseguiu passar nos testes da Recruta.
Depois de completar a sua primeira missão com muito sucesso recebeu uma t-shirt azul-escura (as t-shits representam os níveis em que eles estão).
Um livro fantástico e cheio de aventura.
3 reviews1 follower
September 11, 2019
This is a great action book.Its book 1 of the cherub series.This book was really interesting because of this I read it quite quickly. The story is about James training and his first mission. I would recommend this book to people who injoy action books.
Profile Image for Alec Velasco.
11 reviews1 follower
March 20, 2013
Cherub the recruit is an amazing book. It takes place in London England. The beginning starts off with the main character James at school. A girl starts teasing him about his "mum." From here, everything goes down hill. After it is all said and done James is running away from his school and will probably be expelled. He comes home to his mom and step dad who are not sober. They tell him to go and get his sister from school. When James gets home his mum is dead in her sleep. From here James his moved to a Foster house and his sister is forced to stay with their nasty step dad Ron. At the Foster house James becomes part of a gang. He bashes a few cars and a few vandalism. Then on his 11th birthday it goes too far. He is asked to steel a pack of beer from a store. It looks so easy because the clerk is fat and before he realized what was going on it would be too late. James walks in and the man asks him what he is doing James bends over and picks up the beer, he turns to run out the door, and runs straight into the glass. James realizes he is being set up. One of his fellow gang members is holding the door shut and James has no chance of escaping. By now the clerk is on top of him. James is in trouble. Next thing he knows he is at what looks like a camp. Later he would find out that this is an agency known as CHERUB. CHERUB is a federal agency that is made up entirely of kids. The group trains them, educates them, and gives them a place to stay. It sends its the kids on missions because the kids are least likely to be spies. James is perfect for this except he can not swim, therefore he cant start basic training, which means he cant go on any missions. Basic training starts for him in two weeks. By then he has to be able to swim 50 metres. James barely passes the swimming test in time. He is practically forced to swim the meters, but he makes it. Basic is training that lasts 100 days and is basically torture. You have to take different classes about guns, knives, explosives, and survival skills. They have to also do the assault course every few hours. James partner is Kerry. She attempted it the year before but broke her kneecap on the 64th day and had to quit. She knows all the tricks but they still have trouble getting passed, but they do pass. Shortly after James is asked to go on a mission. He has to make friends with kids that are related to mass weapons dealer along with find out who the arms dealers are. James goes to school gets a girlfriend and accomplishes the mission. There is a close call though. The mission leader thought James had the deadly disease Arthrax. Ends up he does not and everything is all good. I really liked this book and i would highly recommend it to anyone of any age. It is the first of four and i am currently reading the rest of the series. Overall this book was amazing and i liked it alot. They set up the plot of the book really well, it wasnt boring and it kept me wondering what would happen next. It is probably my favorite book.
6 reviews1 follower
September 12, 2016
I decided to read this book because a lot of the people in my class had suggested it for their book speech. I thought it was a genre I liked and had a good plot, so I started reading the book.

Something I like in the story is the humor they put into it, such as when Mr Large set the kids their last test within the hundred days. The test was to put their hands in a bucket with a poisonous jellyfish and to not put their hands in the antidote for a certain amount of time. The test turned out to be a joke planned by Mr large which put James in a state.

Something I learnt throughout the story was that being attentive could come in handy, this was because when James was in his Russian class, he had to pay attention because all that knowledge would come in handy for reading the instructions that were only in the language that they learnt. They would have to use their knowledge of the language they were learning or else if they didn't know then they wouldn't be able to pass basic training.

A character I like in the story was the main character, James. I liked him because he would always push himself further to make his future a success and for the people around him. Another character I liked was Bruce, I liked him because at points his thoughts were so stupid it was funny and I like that a kid of his age had put so much work into something to perfect it which
Profile Image for Logan Sowter.
8 reviews
April 4, 2013
This book is about a child named James Adams who's mother has just died. When his little sister got sent to live with her father, Uncle Ron, James had to move to the Nebraska House. James meets a boy named Kyle. But a while after James came to the Nebraska House, they sent him and Kyle to Cherub. It turned out that Kyle was already a part of Cherub. Cherub is a organization in the UK that takes kids and turns them into agents.They send them on top secret missions that M15 or the police don't know about. There are different shirt colors for your rank at Cherub. Orange is guest, Red is before training, Blue is for training, Grey is for completing training, Navy is for doing a good job on missions and Black is for doing an excellent job on many missions. After James completed his 100 day training, he got sent on a mission with his swimming teacher, Amy to go into a place called Fort Harmony and find out about some terriorist related activities. After they nailed all of them except for one, James and Amy went back to Cherub. When they got back, James got his Navy Shirt and Kyle got his after. Kyle was jeolous that James got his Navy Shirt before him. I liked reading this book because it was very exciting.
Profile Image for Cora Tea Party Princess.
1,323 reviews802 followers
May 14, 2018
I read this back in high-school. In fact, I read the first three books as the author was coming in to do an after school talk. So it's with a feeling of nostalgia that I sit down to re-read this almost ten years on. Wow, I'm old.
Profile Image for Kajsa Hallin.
57 reviews4 followers
May 25, 2020
The nostalgia...

Read these in middle school. Remember them being amazing, which they are, but didn’t realise it contained some cringe worthy moments as well. I guess that’s unavoidable when you read a book meant for children with a twelve year old protagonist
Profile Image for Nicholas H.
8 reviews1 follower
June 4, 2013
Most of the time when a criminal suspects someone is a spy it is usually an adult. So what if the spies weren’t adults, instead they were teens. These teens would set up secret surveillance cameras and spy equipment around someone’s house. For James Choke this is regular life. James works for the secret agency called Cherub.

The Recruit by Robert Muchamore is exactly what people wouldn’t think. It opens up minds to what could be, but nobody knows. James is a teen that seems to get into trouble, but also seems brilliant in his way of doing good things. James has no idea to expect when he finds himself as a Cherub recruit, but he has no other options after his mother dies and no one else is there to take care of him.

Muchamore’s writing gives great reality along with futuristic qualities to James’s life of difficulties and amazement. Through the tough beginning to the upward posing plot and future James can be seen as a great example to others. He can relate to many other teens and at the same time give the idea that good things can happen later down the road.

Why would James want to seek out his future as an agent for Cherub when life isn’t even worth it? The answer is “refuge”; James needs success to complete something in life. He hasn’t accomplished anything else in life and this is it. Saving the world from terrorists!

James Choke is given a chance to live a real life. Something that may seem like a dream compared to hi s earlier living. This life will involve helping others from dangers and the life of some romance on the side. This great new path may leave some bad memories behind but who knows what will come into his spying career as an agent.

Nothing in Muchamore’s writing really hindered besides the part where I couldn’t keep my face out of the book just because of the eye opening idea of teen agents. It makes any teen wonder what it would be like to be in that place; and who wouldn’t want to save the world from terrorists.

This book is great for any teen to read if someone loves the futuristic creativity of writing. It really makes someone think about life. When someone is down there is always something that they can look forward to. Someone may think it isn’t possible but I can think of all the teens in the world and I know their talents can be used in a way such as this. It can give that person self confidence and maybe feel like a leader for something if it did happen. What if it already is?
19 reviews
September 23, 2013
My Review

One of the quirkiest, most amazing books I've ever read!
I decided to read this book because it was all in the rage, everyone was reading it last year. Well, i must sound like an old guy talking about something that was cool from last year but the book hasn't changed, its still as awesome as it had ever been.
This book completes the "A book with a male main character" category on my bingo board. Although this category had already been completed before.
It was already filled by "The Hobbit", one of my other reviews. But when i couldn't find a suitable space for The Recruit (this book) i discovered that The Hobbit had been written before 1980, (another category) i transferred it to that space and replaced it's recent category with The Recruit.
My favourite quote - well, more than a quote really, "bit" then, was when Kerry outsmarted James to 'who was going to kill the snake' debate on their test mission, - "OK", James said. "You want snake for dinner. How do you plan to kill it?"
"Pull back the cover, poke it till it sticks it's head out then hack it off with the machete".
"Sounds like fun". James said. "This is your idea, so I'm poking it and you're doing the hacking".
"Fine", Kerry said. "But if i kill it, you're cutting all the guts out and cooking it".
- i like it because its funny, AND the girl did so much better than him. BURN!!!
Something new i learn't from the book is that adults shouldn't doubt kids. Sure, we may not be as smart as you guys, or have the same rights as you do. But we do have feelings, AND BRAINS!!! And some of our rights are actually ok. For example, it may be funny or cute if a three year old goes running down the street naked. AND we don't get in trouble! How would you think the consequences would look like if - i dunno - a 22 yr old did that!?!?
Anyway, back to the review. In The Recruit James's mother was interesting to me. Even though she dies at the start. :( She was apparently VERY overweight, her name was Gwen, she was a thief, and she died because of the "dangerous" mixture between her pain killers and alcohol. what?
Overall though, i absolutely adored the book and remains to be one of the best i have ever read. :D

By: Sophie Tse 9BVD
August 14, 2014
Okay... so...
I enjoyed this book very much! To be honest... I could almost say that I loved it, surprisingly! I was not expecting to like this so much!!! And, right now, I still don't know if I should give this a 4 out of 5 stars or if I should give it a 5 out 5 stars...
In the beginning, I was a little bit sceptical about this book and until the first 100 pages I wasn't really sure if I liked it or not.
James pissed me off, sometimes... and there were some moments that didn't catch my attention as much as I wanted it to.
I like James though. I think he's a good character and he cares a lot about the people surrounding him. That's a good thing. I also really like Lauren, Amy and Kerry. They are pretty cool girls. And Bruce and Kyle are great!
This thing with the spy kids is a fascinating concept. I found it very entertaining!
Basically, I kind of loved this book! But I think there was something missing in here... although I liked it very much, I have to give it a 4/5 stars!
If you haven't read this book, you should definitely do it!
Profile Image for Emma.
278 reviews44 followers
July 15, 2017
I couldnt help but draw comparisons to the Alex Rider series when reading this. It follows the same basic idea- the British government use children as spies to infiltrate secret organisations, believing that no one will ever suspect a child of espionage.

This book follows 12 year old James, who becomes an orphan in the novel's opening chapters. His rebellious nature makes him a prime candidate for CHERUB, the government's spy school for children. The bulk of the novel shows his introduction to this world, and we follow him through basic training and his first mission.

This is a children's book so be prepared for juvenile language throughout the book. James starts out as a bully but becomes infinitely more likeable as the story progresses. He and his fellow students are convincing enough as spies, but make enough mistakes to feel like real 11 year olds.

This was a good opening novel. I'll certainly read the next to see how the story progresses.
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