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Jake Highfield Chaos Unleashed [Paperback]

Alec Sillifant
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)

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Book Description

18 Mar 2009
Chaos runs through the dark night; head down, teeth clenched, eyes peeled. The rain lashes his face, thick clumps of mud fly up as he runs, but nothing will stop him discovering the dark secret of The Academy, nothing.Alec Sillifant's first novel, a slick, quick non-stop page turner, will put you on the edge of your seat until the very last page. A spy-school-thriller with a twist, this is a great read for the impatient and demanding C21st young reader!

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Meadowside Children's Books (18 Mar 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845393481
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845393489
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 799,880 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Alec Sillifant was born in 1965 in Somerset but as a kid moved to Liverpool, the city he considers home though he has little understanding of football or what the fuss around The Beatles is all about.

He was first published at a tender age - could have been 9 or 10, he forgets - in a comic called 'Krazy' that has long since vanished before working for a couple of decades on the next words, to make them perfect as possible not because he is genetically lazy, to get published in a magazine called AWoL, which also has now ceased to be. (He understood at the time that a pattern seemed to be emerging) He also had his scribblings published in Back Street Heroes another magazine...that is still in print before anyone asks and rightly so, check it out if you like your motorcycles with a touch of finely engineered individuality.

Eventually he found some nice people, at Meadowside Children's Books, who thought his words should go into books and since then they have published nine books with him, the latest of which is 'Jake Highfield Chaos Unleashed'; a book even Sillifant was surprised to find himself finish as it contains more than 20 words. This one even got into The Times as part of a Book Pack and was accompanied with some nice words of praise, which made him a bit big headed and a pain to be around. Both were partly due to the fact this was the first time a Sillifant had made the broadsheets since the Great Sheep Rustling Trials in Devon during 1784.

He has done other stuff in his time on the planet but this is all about his writing so we will leave it there. Alec has got a 'MySpace' thing going on but in a very limited scope as he does not really understand what he is supposed to do but if you want to shout at him for something that is the best place to try to do so. But be warned he has a tendency to make stuff up and lie on reflex so don't believe everything you read or hear about him.

Product Description


"Suspense, fear and malice come through in the readable style of this well constructed first novel" --The School Librarian

"A fast-paced and thrilling spy story"
A LoveReading4Kids Teen Book of the Year --LoveReading4Kids

"Sillifant's novel reveals both a flair for action and humour." --Armadillo Magazine

"(Chaos Unleashed) comes with a healthy dose of masculine muscle... and the characters are all strongly written. This is a powerful debut novel." --The Bookbag

From the Author

I thought it only polite, and to show my gratitude, to thank all of the people who have taken the time to read and then taken some more time to comment on my book here on Amazon. I really am well chuffed to read all of your thoughts posted here...though, as you might expect, I agree with some more than others. However even those critiques that have wounded me beyond psychological repair - too late to feel guilty now - will hopefully prove to be beneficial because I have only recently and to my surprise discovered that I am not perfect. Close but not perfect.

So thank you one and all for your time and effort it really is appreciated and you don't know how happy it has made me that some of you really enjoyed my story. Hopefully in the near future you will have another chance to give me a shameful ego boost or a literary kicking as is your want.

In fun and with my Best Wishes...and Thanks again

Alec Sillifant

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, action-based novel 20 May 2009
By G. Horsham VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The book centres around Jake Highfield, a former misfit child, who gets put in a school which trains him to be a teenage spy, code named "Chaos".

Chaos Unleashed has enough going for it that it will hold the attention of teenagers as well as adults. The language is simple and the plot is easy to follow. The most complex aspect of the book is the technical descriptions of some of the spy gadgets used in the story, which are pitched at a higher level than the general writing.

Parts of the book will have you thinking of similarities between other books and films, with slight references which might remind you of X-Men, Harry Potter and even James Bond when it comes to the gadgets. If you like them, at a simplistic level, then you'll like this book.

The pace of the book does keep your interest and you want to continue reading it. However, there is an odd feeling at points throughout the book that some of the plot or action is missing, quite a few sections assume you'll put the pieces together of what's happened but it feels more like a fault in the writing than a planned omission. In some cases, the plot omitted huge chunks of information which would have made for a more engaging story. For example, we are taken through how the main character, Jake Highfield, ends up at the "special" school of St Margaret's. It is there that he learns the skills in order to become an "operative". However, the story then jumps 3 years from him entering the school, to the time when the story is set and omits any detail of his training or the process he went through to progress from unruly child to highly-skilled teenage spy. More detail and fleshing out the characters would have created a longer, but more comprehensive novel.

In summary: entertaining, action-based. A character with lots of potential.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Twists, turns and double-crossing aplenty 7 April 2009
Enter the world of Jake Highfield, codename `Chaos' - school boy turned secret operative, on this fast-paced, action-packed adventure of corruption, mystery and betrayal. I was gripped throughout with the constant twists, turns and double-crossing. A thrilling read for the 12-16 age group, with chase, fight and combat scenes aplenty. Set around St. Margaret's Academy, the training school for secret operatives such as our hero, rebel spy `Chaos' and his super-intelligent, tech-savvy friend Angel. Chaos Unleashed ticks all the boxes of an exciting teenage spy thriller, a bookshelf must-have from a great up-and-coming author.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Engrossing! 9 Oct 2009
By E. Heckingbottom TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
'It does what it says on the tin' - or should that be, what it says on the back cover? This is another book that i lent to the 14 year old son of friends of mine this summer, and kept him totally engrossed for two or three days by the side of the pool.

The rest of the review is written with his help. (Thank you Robert!)

'It will drag you in and hold you hostage. An exhilerating book.' This is what it says on the back cover, and it was true. I would recommend this book for teenage boys, especially those who like the 'Cherub' series by Robert Muchamore. At times fast paced, there were some more boring bits where the author perhaps over-elaborates the plot, but nevertheless an enjoyable read.

A great idea for a stocking filler for boys aged 12 to 15
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SUPER BOOK!.................................... 18 Mar 2009
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
A breeding ground for McNabs and Ryans. St. Margarets is a private boarding school with a difference. Here the pupils not only receive the "3 Rs", but all the necessary education in espionage.
Our hero Jake Highfield is a former young offender turned spy and develops backbone into the bargain.
Aimed at young teens, this book is in no way childishly written and does not insult the young intelligence. Frankly, I am way past the audience age and thorougly enjoyed it. There is never a dull moment and it is difficult to lay down.
The first in a series (I hope), it promises to be as addictive as nicotine.
Well worth reading........
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars James Bond for Teens 10 Mar 2009
By shaz17 TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
James Bond for Teens

Jake Highfield is jack the lad and teen spy all in one. For any Teen to go through what he does and still come out a winner is due to the fine writing of this Author. Chaos Unleashed was a surprising read, full of most of what you expect of a misbehaving teen, but also a grown up side that made me look at this book with more respect then I normally would have.
I was gripped from beginning to end as I followed the trials and tribulations, joys and betrayals of Jake Highfield. The more you progress in the book the better it seemed to get. The plots and sub-plots galore are in there aplenty. Im not keen on flash back but it does seem to work in Chaos Unleashed.
Jake seemed to go on one mission after another and I felt that was much for a young lad to cope with. I think he handles himself well in the Teen Spy business and hope to read more about him and his friends.

My friends 13 year old Son read this book and he thought it was very good, he like the idea of a 'Teenage Rebel Spy' and was pleased with the pace of the book. He was pleased there was a female interest, as every hero should have one...that made me smile.
Could be a bit of a heavy read for Kids that like lighter books. I would say 13 and over that this is more suited for.

A good read by an up and coming Author.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Exciting and well written first novel
A spy academy for teenagers? Every kid's dream of fun?

Well, not quite as Jake discovers in this fast paced book, featuring advanced electronic gadgets, a lively girl... Read more
Published on 22 July 2010 by MJ King
2.0 out of 5 stars Has potential but never really gets started.
I was suprised when reading the other reviews on this page as I was expecting more readers to feel the same way I did, which was very disappointed. Read more
Published on 21 Mar 2010 by Goodenough4me
4.0 out of 5 stars Slick, fun, and dramatic spy thriller for teens
I'm very much not in the target age group for this novel but I did enjoy it. Jake Highfield is a fourteen year old elite spy codenamed Chaos who is a cool, quick thinking and... Read more
Published on 23 Aug 2009 by Scriber_scouse
4.0 out of 5 stars More crosses than a crossword!
Chaos Unleashed is a well written book which will keep you guessing just as much as the main character. Jake Highfield is a boy with no family to speak of. Read more
Published on 16 July 2009 by Jen @ Reading Lark
3.0 out of 5 stars Fast-paced spy novel that is somewhat limited by continual twists.
Sillifant's novel is an action-packed spy novel. The story revolves around a secret school 'St Margaret's whereby troubled youngsters are trained to utilise hi-tech gadgets and to... Read more
Published on 18 May 2009 by Marco Busani
4.0 out of 5 stars A good teenage spy thriller
To begin with I wasn't expecting much to be honest because I thought "not another young spy book". But then I read the first chapter and found myself reading on because It's such a... Read more
Published on 3 May 2009 by Smatch
4.0 out of 5 stars Thriller for any budding 007s
Jake Highfield is 11 years old, out of control and with no foster parents willing to take him on, sent to St Margarets Academy. Read more
Published on 25 April 2009 by Big Bertha
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting to say the least
I was intrigued by this item to say the least. I am a great fan of the so called 'young spy' type genre, and have read a number of different examples of this form of writing. Read more
Published on 24 April 2009 by A. Wright
4.0 out of 5 stars a good teen read
This story is simular to those of the alex rider series and is probably aimed more at teenage boys, but i think many teenage girls would enjoy them too. Read more
Published on 23 April 2009 by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Alex Rider meets Harry Potter
Jake Highfield, codenamed Chaos, is a student at an elite academy that trains teenage spys. Whilst this theme has been explored by other authors, this is a particularly dark and... Read more
Published on 22 April 2009 by J. S. Bundy
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