The New Recruit, The Mission League Series, Jill Williamson, Marcher Lord Press, Adventure, September 1, 2012, 422 pages.
Synopsis: Forced to choose between military school and a Christian spy organization, skeptic Spencer Garmond signs on with the Bible geeks. But before he even boards the plane for Moscow, Spencer realizes this is no Bible club. These guys mean business. Stumbling onto a case involving a gang of homeless boys, a chilling tattoo, and the always beautiful Anya Vseveloda, Spencer struggles to find the faith needed to save the Mission League from enemy infiltration.
My thoughts: At first glance, the cover promises a high-octane thriller, which it eventually fulfills, but the focus is where the title is, The New Recruit. Spencer Garmond is a high school basketball pro, looking to prove himself, even if a few elbows or feelings get shoved aside. What makes this book tick properly is Spencer's transformation of character. It is not drawn out too far, or caused by a sudden tragedy, but happens as most do: with time and experience. It is fun to live vicariously through his growing "pains."
The plot took an interesting side, as I ventured into territory I could not predict. It's the sort of writing to keep me guessing (i.e. to keep me interested). I was surprised that Marcher Lord Press published something this..."normal." In light of what they've put out before, the quality remains, and it's an effective expansion of genres.
In conclusion, The New Recruit is a fast-paced teen spy adventure that lives past its expectations. I recommend it highly!
*This book was provided free by Marcher Lord Press, in conjunction with Novel Teen. I was not required to write a positive review, and the opinions expressed here are my own.*
My rating: 5 stars