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Evil Genius

(Genius #1)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  8,172 ratings  ·  810 reviews
Cadel Piggott has a genius IQ and a fascination with systems of all kinds. At seven, he was illegally hacking into computers. Now he's fourteen and studying for his World Domination degree, taking classes like embezzlement, misinformation, forgery, and infiltration at the institute founded by criminal mastermind Dr. Phineas Darkkon. Although Cadel may be advanced beyond hi ...more
Hardcover, 552 pages
Published May 1st 2007 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published April 1st 2005)
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Amy I agree with the previous two answers, this book is more appropriate for teens. However, since this question was five years ago, I'd say she would abs…moreI agree with the previous two answers, this book is more appropriate for teens. However, since this question was five years ago, I'd say she would absolutely be old enough now. (less)

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Average rating 3.80  · 
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 ·  8,172 ratings  ·  810 reviews

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Montzalee Wittmann
Sep 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Evil Genius
(Genius #1)
by Catherine Jinks
I listened to the audible version from the library and the narration was excellent! The whole book was too notch! There were so many twists! I fell in love with the book right away. A genius boy who is lonely and gets into trouble more from boredom than meanness. At the age of 7 he is a hacker and lands him in big trouble. From there... Life just gets worse while he is suppose to be getting help!
Aug 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Few pleasures are quite as sublime as reading a book, enjoying it, and only afterwards realizing that you're familiar with the author. Ask me who Catherine Jinks was before I read "Evil Genius" and you'd have met with a blank stare accompanied by some rapid-fire blinking. Only after I read and enjoyed her latest did I put two and two together. Catherine Jinks = "Pagan's Crusade" = Catherine Jinks = "Evil Genius"! The "Pagan" series is probably one of the best too little appreciated historical f ...more
Mary hoskins
This book is a book that I really liked and have no idea why. The plot was confusing, Cadel dressing up as a girl should have been weird, most of the characters at the school were disturbing, and yet I loved it. Admittedly the beginning leading into the middle was a bit boring, and I did skim read a little, but I found the end leaving me with that warm fuzzy feeling of "just right". Not many books do that.

I think what sold me was the character's development. The main character Cadel, who I was w
I'm not sure why I picked this audio book up, but I'm glad that I did. It was a lot of fun & the characterization of the main character, a child, was very well done. His motivations, extreme intelligence in some areas & complete blindness in others was excellent. It was quite an adventure, too.

The reader was perfect for me. Her accent & high voice fit the book well.

On the downside, the author obviously doesn't know much about computers & they are a major part of the story. Her techno-babble made
Eh. It was ok, but it seemed like it might be too long and a bit boring in parts for the intended middle-grade audience. At least I think that's the intended audience.
Sort of reminded me of Artemis Fowl...but not as good. Still, I love the idea of an Evil Child Genius. There's a good chance I'll give the next book a shot for that reason alone.
May 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: may-2021-tbr
This book was really good it was better than expected from a book with this theme it was a very interesting read. The characters were interesting especially Cadel a boy with poor social skills that is just too smart for his own good. He was realistically written for a boy with his circumstances he was by the end a confused boy who just did not know anything who just wanted to get away from everything he started uncovering. I really liked the plot it started by telling of a smart boy who causes t ...more
Aug 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Cadel Piggett is a smart boy with a genius IQ and loves computers of all kinds. He can hack into other systems and do other atrocious things and his psychiatrist Thaddeus is guiding him through life. When he finds out that his father is an evil criminal mastermind and runs a school for evil known as the Axis institute, he goes not knowing of his father's dark intentions. Can he stop his father's dark plans before it is too late? Read on and find out for yourself.

This was a pretty good YA audiobo
Dec 26, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, fantasy
I am horribly conflicted by this book. While the first part was interesting, watching a young child struggle with his intellect, learning as well as school, it got rather boring when he enrolled in the school for evil geniuses. Which wasn't really what was advertised on the tin. It slowly managed to get to a climax with a few twists and turns, when the action finally got started and the book got interesting, and then it ended, with no real resolution. I am unsure if I will read the next in the s ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 08, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Dr. Horrible
Recommended to Jean by: Summer
This is a book I probably wouldn't have picked up on my own. Partly because I'm just not in the habit of giving books without plot blurbs much attention, and partly because I don't pay much attention to the YA section.

It was absolutely wonderful to read a book written on this level - this is seriously not a book for people who have trouble with simple html formatting, and technobabble (serious and humorous) abounds. The plot is solid and complex, and even when I felt like I had a grasp on what w
Mar 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What. An. Amazing. Book.

Seriously, I finished this book after feverishly reading it for about three days, and I just sat there thinking about it for about two hours before I could go to sleep. It was brilliant.

Character development, amazing plotlines and twists, brilliant originality... all things that went into Evil Genius. I spent today driving around to multiple bookshops to try and find the sequel, but so far I've only found the third in the series and I'm DYING TO READ IT!

Highly, HIGHLY rec
I can't be bothered wasting my time with this book. I'm a fan of evil, but this story hasn't done anything for me at all. This book dragged on too much and I don't have the patience for it; too many other books out there to read, so I won't waste my time on a book I'm not enjoying. ...more
Kat  Hooper
Sep 24, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: audiobook
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.

Cadel Piggott doesn’t really fit in. His genius IQ and his peculiar obsessions seem strange to his classmates. He’s not a malicious child, but his boredom drives him to challenge himself by hacking into computers and designing intricate pranks. It doesn’t help that his parents are constantly busy and don’t spend any time with him. The only person who really seems to care about Cadel is Dr. Thaddeus Roth, his psychologist. Thaddeus even encourages Cadel’s o
Rick Cole
Dec 11, 2011 rated it really liked it
Did I like this book?: This book is unique. This book is very, very unique, like, I have never read a book quite like this one before, and I am very happy about that. I am a guy who normally likes the bad guys in books and movies better than the heroes because being evil is so much more fun. This book is about a special school designed to train villains. So yes, I liked this book a whole lot.

Summary: Again, as with all my reviews, this summary will be short and sweet in order to avoid major spoi
Apr 25, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, read-in-2009
Cadel Piggott isn't your typical kid. For one thing, he's extremely gifted intelligence wise. And for another, he's the son of the evil Dr. Darkkon, who is being held in prison for various crimes.

When Cadel's adopted parents take him to see a psychologist following Cadel's attempts to illegally hack into various computer systems, Cadel falls under the influence of Dr. Thaddeus Roth. Unknown to his adoptive parents, Roth is actually part of Darkkon's league of evil and instead of helping Cadel w
★ Jess
I picked up this book after a recommendation from a friend.
The one i picked up had the black cover-very enchanting, and a gripping blurb.
I read the first page (as i usually do when testing a book) it was gripping and very descriptive-so, i purchased the book.

The start was superb. Very visual-and the characters where very believable as well.
After really enjoying the first chapters, the story dragged on.
Some times there would be a very quick change, but then back to its dragging.
I must admit
Mar 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: young adult, boys
This is a book that boys would like. My husband was intrigued by the cover and the inside cover made him laugh. The bad guys are deliciously evil and our hero Cadel is just as bad.

Evil Genius is the story of Cadel Piggott. At a very young age, Cadel was able to hack into any computer system. He was an outsider, but studied human behavior and interactions. As a result, he developed a dating matchmaking site. He engineered the failure of his senior class at high school as well as the collapse of h
Jan 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
I think this (22/12/19) was about the fourth time I read this.

The first few times were in my teens and I was honestly a little bit disappointed by the end. I like to think it's a mark of how I've grown that I see it's more realistic as it is, messy and closer to the real world. Still not perfect but better than I thought, for different reasons.
Ceillie Simkiss
Feb 20, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed, fiction, fantasy
Read the full review here! ...more
Emilie Guan
Dec 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
All his life, Cadel has been living with his inattentive and uncaring adoptive parents. He is a genius when it comes to computers and systems, and even controls the whole train system for a day, despite being around 7 years old at the start of the book. Then he meets this doctor who introduces him to the Axis Institute, where he takes classes like Mutation, Pure Evil, Forgery, and Misinformation. His projects start becoming more and more cruel, until he meets an online friend names Kay-Lee who m ...more
akacya  ♡̷̷ˎˊ
Jan 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: format-audiobook
i decided to pick this up after i remembered i’d had to abandon it years ago (due to moving away from the library i’d checked it out of), and i’m so glad i did! i love the unique characters and plot line so much. so excited to pick the next book up!
Amy Holiday
Oct 24, 2018 rated it it was ok
Have had this on my shelf forever. Finally got around to reading it. It was ok. Lots of internal dialogue. Interesting concept, but it was a little darker than I had thought it would be, with a kind of unexpected character twist. Definitely ended on a cliffhanger, so since I've got the others on my shelf as well I might as well finish reading them :) ...more
Don't even remember where I stopped reading this, no more than 20% I'd say. It bored me to tears and though I wanted to get back to it for a challenge, I could not make myself. ...more
Dec 30, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, 2010, espionage
By the end of last year I was in a total YA funk. I was feeling jaded, and extremely tired of reading about American teens in American schools and all the usual clichés that that comes with. So someone recommended Evil Genius to me as a book that would break me out of my funk - they even said they would eat their hat if I didn't like it.

Well, no need to break out the hat-dipping sauce, but I didn't enjoy it as much as I'd hoped either, even if it did meet the criteria.

Cadel Piggott is far from a
D.L. Morrese
Sep 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
School stories have been popular since at least the 19th Century when Tom Brown’s Schooldays by Thomas Hughes was published in 1857. I suppose that once school, and therefore childhood literacy, became common, young people wanted to read, and the one setting they all shared and could relate to was school. Such stories became a sort of genre, which I’ve heard labeled ‘English Schoolboy Stories’ or, alternately, ‘British school novels,’ although they can take place in any part of the former Britis ...more
Nov 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Evil Genius starts out simply enough and we are introduced to Cadel Piggot, a seven year old genius who has a habit of dismantling his adoptive parents’ security system, hacking into high-security computer networks and bill pay services. This unusual behavior lands Cadel in trouble with the law. As a result, he is referred to Dr. Thaddeus Roth, a well-known psychologist for troubled kids.


Dr. Thaddeus Roth, being an out of the ordinary psyc
Sanel Basic
Jun 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Thirteen year old genius Cadel Piggott lives in Sydney (Australia) with his distracted parents. Unfortunately, his advanced intellect makes it hard for him to understand how other people think, and he has no social skills, so he spends his time in corners by himself. Bored out of his skull, Cadel quite naturally gets into some mischief (in this case some computer hacking), by causing mass transit and such. As a result, he's taken to see a psychologist, who, treats him like an adult. The psycholo ...more
Stuff I Read - Evil Genius by Catherine Jinks Review

I thought I knew what I was getting into when I picked up this book. There's a manga I've seen, Hollow Fields, that has basically the same (what I presumed was the) premise, that there's basically a school for evil geniuses. That's what I got from the synopsis and the inside cover and so that's what I was prepared for, something fast and with lots of explosions. Now don't get me wrong, there were explosions, but this book sets up a much slower
Jan 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maybe I don't really want to give this a 5, but maybe I do, especially since I've been in the throes of some horrible YA recently. So, maybe my rating of this book is entirely comparative. But I don't think so.

When I started reading about Cadel, I wasn't sure why the book was so big. I expected it to be childish and maybe Roald Dahl-esque tale about a gifted boy in hands of smart & dumb adults - charming, straightforward, with a 50/50 chance of being memorable. By the time I had spent a whole d
Sep 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Evil Genius by Catherine Jinks is a fictional story that I would highly recommend to anyone who likes books with slower plots but more complex characters. I would definitely rate this book five stars! The main character in Evil Genius is a young boy named Cadel Piggot. Cadel is a computer genius, and at a very young age, he is capable of creating so much mayhem with his unusual skills that the police refer his foster parents (the Piggots) to Thaddeus Roth, a child psychologist. During Thaddeus a ...more
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Catherine Jinks is the Australian author of more than thirty books for all ages. She has garnered many awards, including the Children’s Book Council of Australia Book of the Year Award(three times), the Victorian Premier’s Award, the Aurealis Award for Science Fiction, the Australian Ibby Award, and the Davitt Award for Crime Fiction. Her work has been published in Australia, New Zealand, Britain, ...more

Other books in the series

Genius (3 books)
  • Genius Squad (Genius, #2)
  • The Genius Wars (Genius, #3)

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