Boy Nobody

Boy Nobody

3.94 (7,668 ratings by Goodreads)
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The explosive new thriller for fans of Jason Bourne, Robert Muchamore and Michael Grant. Boy Nobody is the perennial new kid in school, the one few notice and nobody thinks much about. He shows up in a new high school, in a new town, under a new name, makes few friends and doesn't stay long. Just long enough for someone in his new friend's family to die -- of "natural causes." Mission accomplished, Boy Nobody disappears, and moves on to the next target. When Boy Nobody was just eleven, he discovered his own parents had died of not-so-natural causes. He soon found himself under the control of The Program, a shadowy government organization that uses brainwashed kids as counter-espionage operatives. But somewhere, deep inside Boy Nobody, is somebody: the boy he once was, the boy who wants normal things (like a real home, his parents back), a boy who wants out. And he just might want those things badly enough to sabotage The Program's next mission.
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Product details

  • 12+
  • Paperback | 352 pages
  • 130 x 198 x 27mm | 290g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1408327600
  • 9781408327609
  • 290,743

Review quote

A fast-paced thriller following the adventures of a brainwashed teen assassin. Children's Bookseller 'Zadoff shines in this entertaining twist on the teen spy novel...hard-edged narration and twists will keep readers riveted.' Publisher's Weekly (STARRED review) A tense and exciting story with a strong cast. Publishers Weekly The plot speeds along seamlessly with plenty of action and drama, and hairpin turns will keep readers guessing; a twist in the end will have them begging for more. Fast, furious and fun! Kirkus Reviews Unresolved mysteries and an open-ended conclusion make this a promising start to an exciting new series. School Library Journal Fast-paced with plenty of twists and turns and tension which hold the reader's focus until the end. Peters Gazette A thought-provoking psychological study of control and freedom. Its laconic, staccato style adds considerably to its merits. Irish Times Melds Jason Bourne with the best of James Bond... a gripping thriller. Flipside Not just another a boy-assassin novel... Zadoff favours short, choppy sentences, which create a tough-private-detective edginess - and are also a boon for less able readers. Jewish Chronicle A brilliant, fast paced thriller. Clever and well-written, this is a thought-provoking and exciting page-turner. Booktrust Boy Nobody is a page-turning, thought-provoking, complex thriller with an unforgettable anti-hero. A memorable read for young adults. Carousel
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About Allen Zadoff

Allen Zadoff is the author of several acclaimed novels including Food, Girls and Other Things I Can't Have, winner of the Sid Fleischman Humor Award and a YALSA Popular Paperback for Young Adults. His new novel, Boy Nobody, is the first in a new YA trilogy about a teenage assassin. Allen is a graduate of Cornell University and the Harvard University Institute forAdvanced Theatre Training. His training as a super spy, however, has yet to be verified.
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Rating details

7,668 ratings
3.94 out of 5 stars
5 31% (2,381)
4 40% (3,095)
3 22% (1,659)
2 5% (412)
1 2% (121)

Our customer reviews

(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Hachette Children's Books and NetGalley.) This book started out well, but after about 20% it just got worse and worse. Boy nobody started out as quite an interesting spy-type character and he actually seemed pretty competent at his job, but unfortunately that all changed. After a point he totally came off his game, was unable to do as he was tasked, and basically turned in to a right wimp! The storyline again started out well, but at the 20% mark it went rapidly downhill and I really lost interest. I didn’t get why Boy Nobody was suddenly off his game, why he couldn’t do what he was supposed to be doing, and why the story was going the way it was! The romance in this was a little dodgy, and again, Boy Nobody really needed to get his head back in the game! The ending to this wasn’t too bad, but I had really lost interest by that point. 5 out of more
by Sarah Elizabeth In Short - Boy Nobody had me hooked throughout the whole book. - I liked how Zadoff flicked back and forth, going through some of Boy Nobody's memories. - This is a very action packed book. - Boy Nobody's character is one which I found myself really liking despite his 'crimes' In Long After reading the blurb for Boy Nobody I couldn't wait to start reading it, I was really in the mood for a book which could have me hooked throughout the whole book. Boy Nobody most definitely did have me hooked from the first page right until the last page. Boy Nobody is written in such a unique, interacting way which really made me feel involved in the story and like I was actually there. I really enjoyed how Zadoff flicked back and forth between the past and present; it gave an insight into Boy Nobody's life and helped me understand his feelings and actions. The storyline is one which literally has action from the first till the last page, there was never a right time to put Boy Nobody down and had to force myself to when I had something to do. My favourite thing about how Zadoff has written Boy Nobody's character is that he really is his own person. I never felt like Zadoff tried to make him a character which he wasn't, I can imagine that as this book was written Boy Nobody's character just took over as his character is so powerful. I found myself warming to him more and more throughout the book and despite his faults and the crimes he commits I really liked him. Final Thoughts Boy Nobody is a fast pace addictive read which will have you hooked right from the first till the last more
by Jodie Lane
I am tempted to just smash my keyboard because that's what I did right after I read Boy Nobody. I was speechless and I didn't realize I was holding my breath while reading the last pages. Releasing a big exhale, I pounded on my keyboard to release pent-up awesomeness. True story. So if this review doesn't end up convincing you, picture yourself releasing a breath out of awesomeness read and acquired and smashing your keyboard. Do you want to experience that for yourself? Do you want to read something that will make you do that? Grab Boy Nobody. At twelve, his best friend killed his parents. At twelve, he was plucked and trained by The Program. At fourteen, he became a ruthless assassin. Now sixteen, he's supposed to kill the mayor of New York City. Boy Nobody does not have feelings, no emotions, only sensations. He's given an assignment and he finishes it. He's a patriot, a soldier, trained to kill enemies of the United States. For months, he integrates in his target's life, then kills him with one swift stab of a pen and leaves, moving on to his next assignment. With six successful missions in two years, he gets to his most difficult assignment yet: kill the mayor of New York City in five days. Complication: the mayor's daughter, Sam. Allen Zadoff has crafted an antihero with no name as the main character and it works so well. Maintaining the anonymity of the protagonist creates the desired effect, he could be anyone. He didn't even describe the MC's physical features. But alongside the apparent distance this style creates, it also works the other way, making you feel for the character. Maybe it's just me but I have a soft spot for flawed characters. Label him an antihero and I am pretty much on his corner. Boy Nobody is told in the first person point-of-view, as the main character tells us his story. We see into his mind, sift through his memories and think along with him. The narrator is calculating, with his actions and his words. He gauges situations, analyzes them and acts out of necessity, specifically, he kills only when necessary. The protagonist takes on the name of Benjamin and enrolls in Sam's school to get close to her and her father. With the timeline of this mission so short, Ben gets into Sam's circle in no time. But Sam's difficult. She isn't like most girls and he can't quite predict and understand her game. Moreover, the mayor reminds him of his beloved father. During missions, he only thinks about finishing his assignment but this time it's different. Memories stashed away in a corner of his mind comes surfacing and he starts to hesitate, finding himself faltering, questioning The Program and breaching protocol. And when he falters, The Program comes for him. All of the characters had dimension, depth and their own histories. This novel is a prime example how characters that you can't categorize as completely evil or entirely good are the best ones. Take for example the protagonist. He does it under orders for the greater good but who gets to decide what's the greater good? Who decides which life is more important than the other? As much as it's riveting, Boy Nobody also makes you think, as it raises bigger questions about good and bad. The twists and turns in Boy Nobody totally surprised me, it had me reeling at the edge of my seat. Allen Zadoff completely pulled my chair out of me. Engaging is an understatement as reading Boy Nobody is a complete experience. I can actually picture it as a film while I was reading it. That vivid, that good. I was completely immersed in this world of Arab henchmen and unassuming teenager assassins with pens that can kill and phones that might have been invented by Q of James Bond with all the encryptment and "applications". I recommend Boy Nobody to all action buffs out there and to reluctant teenage boy readers as the action is non-stop. Thrilling, gripping, compelling and at times heart-tugging, Boy Nobody is a book you won't be able to put down. In the end, your heart will go out to a heartless teen. I certainly cannot wait for the sequel. -Dianne @ Oops! I Read A Book Againshow more
by Dianne @ Oops! I Read A Book Again
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