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Among the Hidden

by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Series: The Shadow Children #1
160 pages, Suspense
Reviewed by Enrique

Great book, well written, but may disturb younger readers.

Plot

Among the Hidden is the story of a young boy, Luke Garner, set in a futuristic society that only allows two children per family. However, many people don't obey this law, for one reason or another.

Luke is a third child, a Shadow Child, forced to live in hiding since birth. He can't go to school, has never met anyone but his own family members, and feels he is destined to this kind of life forever.

That is, until he meets Jen Talbot, another third child who comes from a very rich family. She has an entirely different outlook on life, and will not settle for being hidden any longer. She wants freedom, and she'll do whatever she must to get it.

Morality

Among the Hidden has values, such as freedom, having the right to live, and so on. However, these are undermined by things that the children do to achieve their goals. Such as Jen (who is thirteen years old) driving a car, and Luke disobeying his parents to see Jen. There is also the premise of parents disobeying the law that says they may only have two children.

Spiritual Content

None.

Violence

Mr. Talbot tells Luke about a shooting, but he does not describe it in detail.

Drug and Alcohol Content

None.

Sexual Content

None.

Crude or Profane Language or Content

None.

Conclusion

Among the Hidden is an amazing book, very fast-paced and thought-provoking as it deals with unwanted children trying to make a place for themselves in an unfriendly world. However, the themes of infanticide, totalitarian government, murder, and general violence will make this book unsuitable for young children. It certainly has a dark overtone, and parents should exercise caution.

Fun Score: 5
Values Score: 3.5
Written for Age: 13+

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