by Mark Cooper


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Tormented by his mother's death...
Taken for granted by his father...
Trained in deadly martial arts...

Jason Steed is looking for a place to call home. He finds what he's looking for in the Sea Cadets-an elite group of British youngsters being groomed for lifelong service in the military. But when a routine training exercise goes awry, Jason finds himself in the middle of a secret mission. The future of the world hangs in the balance...and Jason might be the only one who can save it.

"A coming of age heart wrenching story packed with laughs and fast paced action. Most readers who love action and spy fiction will devour this dynamic book in a single sitting or two, otherwise they'll be in extreme agony waiting to see what happens next." -Fictionreviewer.com

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781402239991
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 09/07/2010
Series: Jason Steed Series
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 479,557
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.70(d)
Lexile: 640L (what's this?)
Age Range: 9 - 12 Years

About the Author

Mark A. Cooper was born in London and moved with his wife and son to the U.S. in 2003. When his 12-year-old son's grades improved after reading the Harry Potter series, Mark decided to encourage literacy with his own novel. He self-published Fledgling: Jason Steed and the novel has enjoyed huge success and a devoted following on the web.

Read an Excerpt


August 1974

Jason released the brake. The plane lurched forward and started to gather speed. He increased the throttle and increased speed. Lights from a vehicle came on ahead. The sirens went off, and the guards poured out of the barracks. Jason slowly pulled back on the tiller. Nothing happened. The plane just continued down the runway.

It bounced and rattled its way toward the buildings. He gave it more power. Still nothing happened when he tried to lift the wheels off the ground for takeoff. The buildings were now getting close; the plane felt lighter to control but would not clear the buildings. He cut the power and applied the brakes.

The plane slowed and bounced to a stop. They were now desperately close to the barracks and Weing's armed guards. Again, he opened the throttles and slowly turned around. He applied the brakes and opened the throttles again. The back of the plane started taking shots from behind.

"Jason. Go! Go!" Wilson shouted as he turned the rear machine guns on the oncoming guards. Both Ryan and Peter in their Plexiglas domes turned to the rear and also began shooting.

The tail began receiving heavy fire. The armored jeeps were getting closer and closer. The second jeep had a mounted machine gun and started firing at the plane. Wilson targeted this vehicle and unloaded his rounds. The driver and gunman were killed instantly; the jeep veered off to the left and turned over, bursting into flames.

Wilson was screaming at the top of his lungs for Jason to move, but the noise of the engines drowned any sound he made. Jason pulled the throttles back farther. The plane's old body shook violently.

"This baby is going to need everything to get it off the ground," he said to himself.
He applied more throttle, building up the revs before he eventu­ally released the brakes.
The plane launched forward. He pulled the throttle back farther and farther. With its 110-foot wingspan bouncing, the B-24 stormed down the runway. Now that it was going faster, it felt lighter to control. Jason opened the throttles all the way; he wanted to get as much speed as possible. He pulled back the tiller. The end of the runway and the wire fence rushed toward him. He had to go now. He was going too fast to stop.

The thirty-three-ton plane slowly lifted off the ground and roared into the cloudless dawn sky. Wilson, John, Ryan, and Pete started cheering as they left the complex behind.
Jason turned on the radio to call for help.

"This is Jason Steed of the 22nd Platoon Sea Cadets requesting flight information-over."

Ray Steed was on the bridge, He could not believe his ears when the sweet, unbroken voice of his son came loud and clear over the airways. The bridge crew members cheered and gave Ray a pat on the back. Ray had to fight back his emotions.

"This is Jason Steed of the 22nd Platoon Sea Cadets requesting flight information-over," he repeated.

"G'day. Jason Steed, this is Broom Air Force Base North Western Australia. Roger Bankman speaking. Please give your position-over."

"I have no idea, sir. Somewhere over Jakarta, flying southwest, 22 degrees-over."

"We have you on radar. What are you flying, Jason?" Roger replied.

"I don't know, sir. A big American World War II bomber. It has four engines, three domes. It's green, noisy, and bloody huge, sir."

The officers on the bridge of the Ark Royal, including Ray, fell about laughing. Then, a new voice came over the airways.

"This is Commander Elliot from Special Forces. Jason Steed, we got your message."

"What message, sir?"

"Are you still in a position to trade for some carrot cake?"

"Wow! You got that? Yes, sir, I want to trade."

"Then, Jason, keep heading toward Broom Airfield. Someone will meet you there."

Eleven years earlier...

Customer Reviews

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Fledgling 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jason Steed: Flegling is a book full of history, action, military combat and of course Karate. The book takes you through Jason's first eleven years of life. He starts out in Hong Kong learning karate, jujitsu and tae kwon do (just to name a few). Right away, you know there is something different about him. He is stuborn, loves carrot cake and sneaks into a military base at night to play on the flight simulator. This just the beginning though. From this, he ends up beating unthinkable odds. Along with a little bit of English Royalty added in too! I won't give away anymore. This story is full of surprises and great moments that will linger in your mind well past the hours you should be sleeping. I actually woke up laughing yesterday morning thinking about the Barbershop scene. I cried, I laughed, my heart beat a little faster than normal sometimes and I finally decided I liked his father when he let Jason make his own decision in the end. This is an excellent book for anyone who likes European war stories, young adult novels and books filled with action and adventure. Plus, I see a series in the making. Over all, this is a book that can be easily enjoyed by someone as young as ten but as old as eighty.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Probably one of the greatest books I have read in a very long time, maybe ever. The story is original, it would make a good series or classic film. The author brings young Jason Steed to life, he makes you want to adopt him, be his brother, mother, father or even be Jason Steed. The story is cute and seems to have everything, action, suspense, emotion, drama, laughter, coming of age and a very soft touch of romance. It's the first time ever I have read a book twice.
ScottAlan11 More than 1 year ago
I picked this up in the Early Reader section and was captivated in just a couple sentences. The book starts out "in media res" with the action already at edge of the seat level. I couldn't wait to get to a comfy chair and just devour it chapter by chapter. The young hero is very likable and easy to relate to. My dad was in the military and I could easily put myself in Jason's place. The action sequences were well written and just the right amount of detail to draw a great picture in the mind without worrying with what color the wall paper was. I would recommend this book to almost any age. I have already loaned it out to my nephew and he has asked to loan it to others. Looks like I will need to buy a second copy :)
Jeffbarrett More than 1 year ago
A beautiful story, original and my favorite book. Jason Steed has become my favorite book, the story stands on it's own for originality, the character Jason is a cute little guy, he is different from other hero's he's real, in the fact he cries, and does normal 'boy things'. The story really gets going and jumps to a new dimension, I also enjoyed the fitting tribute to Raymond Steed, the real life youngest ward hero. I recommend it to people age 8-15.
Patrick80 More than 1 year ago
I think the title says it all..... I enjoyed this book more than any other book, I like the speed of action, Jason Steed is like a real person. Unlike other hero's Jason does cry, laugh, sleep and gets into trouble. I hope they make a film, the best scene for me was on the ship when they was learning arm to arm combat and the bully was hurting everyone, until Jason went in. I hope book 2 comes out soon.
JackJCollins More than 1 year ago
The best book I have read, i have now read it twice, it was easy to read, really fast, funny in some places, tons of action and a few tears. The author makes Jason Steed a real boy, he has to stop to eat, sleep and cry when he is hurt, but the story is so different to anything else I have read. I can easily see how this is Justis Biebers favorite book.
JRlibrary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I read several reviews that claimed Fledgling was better than the Alex Rider series. Although I enjoyed the book, I don't feel it is near the caliber of the Alex Rider books. Fledgling is a good adventure story about a British boy, Jason, who, while living in Hong Kong, starts martial arts very early in his life and excels at it. Jason also has a dad who is mostly absent from his life so Jason has a lot of unsupervised time. He joins the Sea Cadets and loves it. While on a training outing, something unexpected happens, which lands eleven year old Jason in the middle of a secret and deadly mission. This is book one and book two is called Fledgling: Revenge of Boudicca.
MStevenson on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Jason Steed is like any other teen...except that he's a martial arts expert, a skilled pilot, and the youngest member of an elite British military group called the Sea Cadets. When a routine training exercise off Jakarta goes terribly wrong, Jason finds himself in the middle of a deadly secret missiom that puts his character, training and expertise to the test as he helps prevent a nuclear war. Filled with action, suspense and thrills, this undemanding page turner will appeal to reluctant readers and those who enjoy an emotional roller-coaster spy novel. Sequels will be avidly anticipated.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago