Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Luke has never been to school. He’s never had a birthday party, or gone to a friend’s house for an overnight. In fact, Luke has never had a friend.

Luke is one of the shadow children, a third child forbidden by the Population Police. He’s lived his entire life in hiding, and now, with a new housing development replacing the woods next to his family’s farm, he is no longer even allowed to go outside.

Then, one day Luke sees a girl’s face in the window of a house where he knows two other children already live. Finally, he’s met a shadow child like himself. Jen is willing to risk everything to come out of the shadows — does Luke dare to become involved in her dangerous plan? Can he afford not to?

It’s probably been a decade since I first read Among the Hidden. This is the first book in Margaret Peterson Haddix’s Shadow Children series. Aimed at the middle aged reader this made a great family read aloud.

Although this book didn’t make me cry it did make my daughter cry. She’s my tenderhearted child and the ending of the book upset her. My 8 year old loved it and after finishing it he retold the story to his father. My 4 year old kept asking questions – “Why could they not have 3 babies?” “Why is he hiding?” – it was a little beyond her comprehension but she was listening because the questions were endless. Already my 12 year old is reading the sequel while my 10 year old complains she wants a turn to read it. Sure signs that this book was a hit among my children.

Content: This is a clean read. Appropriate for ages 8 and up.

Rating: 4 Stars. I’ll be reading the next book in the series to see what happens next.