Age Group: Middle Grade
Release Date: March 1, 2000
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?
I first read this book in fifth grade, and ever since then I have been a fan of Margaret Peterson Haddix. I went into Among The Hidden with high expectations because when I had read it before, I loved it. Needless to say, I wasn't disappointed.
Luke's a third child: illegal, because of the law that people can only have two children so that the world doesn't become over-popuated. He has to stay hidden inside, so that he's not caught by the Population Police.
But one day, he spots a face in a window of a house next to his; a face that doesn't belong to the other two boys that live there.
One day, he sneaks over there, to discover another third child --- a girl named Jennifer. They become fast friends, and she opens his eyes to the government conspiracies and the things they can do to overrule the Population laws.
I loveeeed this book. It was a fast-paced, exciting, and fascinating read. Haddix created a fantastic dystopian world, and she kept me entertained the entire time.
I love the way Margaret Peterson Haddix helps us learn about her characters. She doesn't come right out and tell us their traits, but instead lets us infer how they are through their dialogue and body behavior.
Haddix writes amazing suspense novels. She is able to word things perfectly in order to make us see what she wants us to picture when we read her book.
I loved the ending. It wasn't wasn't what I had expected, and it gave me hope that maybe, just maybe, things will get better for the shadow children. But, it still leaves a seed of doubt in you, so that you really want to read the rest of the series to find out what will happen.
I like the cover to Among The Hidden. It really depicts what the book's about. It's also eerie, which I loooove.
"Matt and me, we've never told anyone about you," Mark said, suddenly serious, which was strange for him. "And you know Mother and Dad don't say anything. You're good at hiding. So you're safe, you know?"
"I know," Luke muttered.
Mark kicked the toy train Luke had crashed. "Still playing with baby toys?" he asked, as if to make up for slipping and being nice.
Luke shrugged. Normally, he wouldn't have wanted Mark to know he played with the train anymore. But today everything else was so bad that it didn't matter.
The Final Verdict:
Also, even though I would consider this book middle grade, it's a great read for all ages.
I have loved all of Margaret Peterson Haddix's books, and this one is definitely no exception.
If you have a couple of hours to kill, this book is a great time filler.
FTC: I bought this book.