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New Guard


By Robert Muchamore

A CHERUB story

James Adams has come a long way since his first days as a CHERUB agent, he is now a mission controller and handling a team of boys sent out to look into a potential new recruit. That mission turns out to be a bust but in the process a larger mission is uncovered. Now he has to assemble a team of ex agents to rescue two kidnapping victims. Things have changed though, not least being James’s office lifestyle is far removed from the brutal physical regime the young agents are put through. Intense training aside the old team is back together, it is going to  be one heck of a ride.

This story does a good job of blending both the old and new guard and in no way will disappoint fans of the series, in fact many may enjoy the chance to catch up with some old favourites. The banter and action are still there. The brashness of the teenagers shines out from the page to the point where they can just frustrate you like any teenager can, this adds to the reality and relatability of the characters. The world they tend to live in is gritty and dirty, the action fast when it needs to be. The scenes between the old and new guard are fun, giving the story a welcome lightness. This was an enjoyable read.


Publisher: Hodder Children’s

Published: 31st May 2016

Key Words: Action, Crime

ISBN: 9781444932157

People’s Republic – December Book Club

Of all the themes in the Cherub series human trafficking is one of those topics that pushes my buttons. So you might think it strange that I chose to post about that at this time of the year, what with Christmas only a few days away. In some ways though I think now is a perfect time to think about things like this.

I live in a prosperous country and have a roof over my head, a job, friends, clothes and food. People that get swept into the complex world of people smuggling often don’t have the luxuries afforded to me. Those that are smuggled at any rate. Those that do the smuggling in many ways live possibly as well or better than I do.

I don’t claim to understand more than a fraction of this complex issue but what I know makes me angry and sad. I am angry that the world we live in has such horrid violations against decency and it makes me sad that so many people are in a position to be taken advantage of.

The people smuggling in People’s Republic focuses on illegal workers ending up in sweat shop conditions rather than the more high profile sex trade but without a question both these issues are tragic and important.

As in Cherub the issue is wider than most of us will ever think about and there is no easy solution. Any smuggling operation like this, is a chain and cutting off one head will more than likely not just result in someone else popping up to fill the void.

I guess really then the question I should ask, before I continue to rant on the topic, is ‘do issues like this have a place in young adult fiction?’

I know there are many who think our youth don’t need to know about all these things but the truth is they do. Young people talk about all sorts of things, they are aware of what is going on in the world, or at least some of them are. Teenagers shouldn’t be underestimated, their interests and passions are as varied as those in any given group of adults.

Books like the Cherub series address the darker issues of our society, and our teenagers face some of these things everyday. Admittedly most won’t have contact with anything to do with people smuggling but influences such as drugs, cults and gangs? Well in my opinion we would be naïve to think otherwise. As far as I can see the Cherub books are interesting stories, I enjoy reading them, the adventure and action. I have problems with the way characters like James treat women, but then the women have the ability to kick his butt – though with Kerry constantly going back to him…well that says things I would like to talk about but this is not the forum for that.

The other thing is if you are so inclined these books can springboard topics of discussion or research. Books that include such topics give us the opportunity to look at things we would sometimes prefer not to look at too closely and sometimes awareness is vital in dealing with issues like these.

So then yes, I believe there is a place in young adult fiction to broach such delicate and inflaming topics.

Muchamore News

Several little tidbits of info to go in here today.

Firstly the cover art has been revealed for Guardian Angel -the second Aramov book. It will probably look like this

Also there will be two Henderson Boys books released next year February will see the release of The Prisoner and the first chapter can be peeked at here and One Shot Kill will be a November release.

People’s Republic

By: Robert Muchamore

Cherub series book 13

Ryan is twelve, just out of basic training and desperate for his first mission. he finally gets the chance and heads to California to befriend Ethan Aramov. Ethan’s mother is estranged from her family, his grandmother is the matriarch of a billion dollar criminal empire. The thing with CHERUB missions is you can’t always plan for every contingency.

Fu Ning hates school, rules and getting up in the morning. Still she finds it odd that her adoptive mother turns up at school and drags her out of it. They end up on the run and when she finds out exactly what her father was her life will never be the same again.

Fans of the CHERUB series may have wondered how the series would survive without James and all the old familiar characters, well I’d have to say it does it very well. These stories have always held elements of dark due simply to the nature of the organisation, children who infiltrate criminal circles of various levels. This is perhaps one of the darkest as it delves into the realm of people smuggling and the illegal sex trade, the latter is not mentioned in explicit detail.

Ryan is a solid replacement for James; tough, trained, and untried, he makes mistakes but has a core of compassion. It will be interesting to see his character develop through this three story arc. Fu Ning is tough and full of attitude, she needs to be to survive what she comes against and if some of those senarios don’t cause you to pause and think for a moment then I will be surprised.

This story is tough, even brutal and definitely not for younger readers. Muchamore has delivered a story with gritty realism and terrible truth at it’s core. As always the CHERUB books are full of action and move along at a fair pace. I am a fan of the series and that remains true. This was a solid addition to a series that appeals to even non-readers but I feel I have to add a word of caution – these topics are very real, and may be considered confronting.

Publisher: Hodder Children’s Books

Published: 04 August 2011

Format: Hardback 416 pages

Categories: Action, Adventure, Crime

ISBN 13: 9780340999196

Purchase: here or use logo to Booktopia on side of the page

CHERUB – More Stuff

Here is a video of Robert Muchamore talking about People’s Republic.

CHERUB – Random Information

I have decided to make today a CHERUB day, I am really looking forward to the new book People’s Republic which is due out on the 4th. So to assist with that I thought I’d post a few links for you to relevant sites.

Let’s start with the Cherub Campus.

Another Cherub site.

Here’s a Henderson Boys site.

And finally Robert Muchamore’s site.

I would also like to add (if you haven’t already heard) that sadly, the live chat that was going to happen on the 4th has been cancelled.


CHERUB Film Teaser

So this pic just came across my computer screen and I flipped, wondered how on earth I missed such a huge deal. Turns out I didn’t, this is just sales art from the Cannes market, that means the film is still ages away in very early stages of pre-production and if you know anything about the film industry it means don’t get your hopes up. Still I love the pic and do have my hopes up, bring on the CHERUB films.

What Happens To James From Cherub?

Over the next three months Robert Muchamore will be releasing three short stories about three alternative futures for James.

If you are a fan who already misses James then you will want to read these. The first one ‘The Playboy‘ is out now.


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