Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Evil Genius by Catherine Jinks

Child prodigy Cadel Pigott is much too smart for his own good. At the age of seven he is already hacking into government computers and accessing top secret information. Fearful of Cadel's abilities and unsure how to keep him out of trouble, Cadel's adoptive parents block his access to computers of any kind and force him to attend therapy sessions three times a week with a psychologist by the name of Thaddeus Roth.  Unbeknownst to the Pigott's, Thaddeus actually works for world renowned evil scientist Phineas Darkkon, who also happens to be Cadel's biological father.  Together they encourage Cadel to utilize his talents in secret acts of sabotage, prepping him for the role he will inevitably play in his father's plot for world domination. After an unfortunate hacking incident at his school leaves him expelled, Cadel is enrolled in the Axis Institute for World Domination.  This uncommon institute of higher learning, founded by Cadel's father, specializes in teaching students important skills such as embezzlement, infiltration, and tax evasion. For the first time in his life, Cadel is surrounded by students that seem to understand his idiosyncrasies and share his advanced intellect, allowing him to make friends quickly.  However when students and teachers start disappearing under mysterious circumstances, Cadel starts to question the role he is playing in his father's evil scheme. Shocking twists abound in the highly explosive ending, making this 552 page read worth the investment. 

Large novels often intimidate me so I often found myself moving this book further down on my to-read list.  How could a young adult novel over 500 pages long not written by J.K. Rowling possibly hold my attention? The title of this book says it all. Jinks has written a wholly original story full of swift paced action and adventure that is, simply put, pure genius.

EvilGenius is the first in a decidedly entertaining three part series from Catherine Jinks. Readers who enjoy this series should be sure to check out Jink's other novels, including her newest release, How to Catch a Bogle. For other action adventure stories featuring evil geniuses, check out the Higher Institute of Villainous Education series by Mark Walden.

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