The Face on the Milk Carton (Janie Johnson, #1)
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The Face on the Milk Carton (Janie Johnson #1)

3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  33,735 ratings  ·  1,583 reviews
No one ever really paid close attention to the faces of the missing children on the milk cartons. But as Janie Johnson glanced at the face of the ordinary little girl with her hair in tight pigtails, wearing a dress with a narrow white collar--a three-year-old who had been kidnapped twelve years before from a shopping mall in New Jersey--she felt overcome with shock. She r...more
Mass Market Paperback, 184 pages
Published May 1991 by Bantam (first published January 1st 1990)
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Erin
man, there are some HATERS on this front page...

listen. if you loved this book when you were in middle school, it sure as hell wasn't because you thought the literary style was articulate and composed. it was because you were in middle school, and therefore an angsty teen who wished you too could discover your lame parents weren't actually related to you by blood. everybody wants to find out they've been kidnapped when they're that age! it's WAY cooler than just being born into suburbia and woul...more
karen
so i had to read this for the "banned books" portion of my teen r/a class, and i am convinced that this wasn't banned by parents or terrible librarians, but by the students themselves who were like "noooooo , don't make us read this!! it is soooo ba-zoring!!!"

because it is. truly.

this could have been a five page book. "oh shit, i was kidnapped when i was three?? let me ask my "parents" and if they are not forthcoming with the info, then i will go to the library and do some research."

end of tale....more
Maria M. Elmvang
Excellent concept, not-so-excellent execution. The plot idea is absolutely thrilling - suddenly realising that your parents are actually not your parents, but that you've been kidnapped, not knowing how to react, who to turn to or who to trust.

Unfortunately Caroline Cooney's didn't quite have the skills to pull it off, and therefore the writing seemed occasionally choppy and the emotions unrealistic.

Still, the story itself was really interesting, so I definitely want to read the rest of the seri...more
Sarah
Rather contrived plot,it struck me as being the literary equivalent of a paint-by-numbers picture. It was almost as though the author sketched an outline and then proceeded to fill in the blanks (I know English teachers always harp about pre-writing with an outline but who really does that?)Besides, milk cartons haven't featured photographs of missing children for years so it is unlikely the current teen audience would grasp the reference.
Rhein
Mar 09, 2008 Rhein rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone 9 and up
Recommended to Rhein by: My sister even though she had only ever read the first chapter b
This book was by far the best book I've ever read but has some adult content. Even though it does it is a great book. It's about a girl named Janie (Jennie) who sees her face from twelve years ago on the back of a milk carton saying she has been kidnapped. The whole book is about her finding out if her "parents" had actually kidnapped her and her finding her real family. I am reading the second book out of four now and so far it is amazing as well.
Sarai
Toward the end of the book Janie has the thought that this situation is going to go on forever. I'm with you, Janie. This book went on foreverrrrrrrrr.

I listened to the book on CD based on a referral from a 5th grader during my school visits, who told me this was an awesome book. And I'm glad he liked it.

For me, it was excruciating.

She loves her family, she hates her family, she loves her family. She's a wretched wretched girl because she allowed someone to buy her from her family with a sunda...more
Phillip
Phillip Ye 3/20/08
Mr. Nourok Writing Arts 903

Final Draft Book Review

The Face on the Milk Carton
By Caroline B. Cooney

At first, I thought this book was just going to be about a girl, who got kidnapped, and some detectives went and tracked down clues to find her. It made me think this book was no different than any other normal mystery book but I was terribly wrong. This book was a lot more than just a mystery!

This book is basically about a girl named Janie and she lives her life as an ave...more
Makenzie
I loved this book!! It is about a girl who finds out she might have been kiddnaped as a little girl. it kept u on ur feet, begging for more and keeps you longing to turn each page!! Read it!
Chris Blocker
I was in the sixth grade. We were having one of those Scholastic book orders that made reading so exciting. This book caught my attention. What could be more captivating than a book about a kid finding out they're kidnapped?!! I begged my mom to order it and she did. Shortly thereafter, the book was in my hands, and suddenly I was ashamed. I was a boy on the verge of junior high school. I watched sports, liked cars and video games. I was too cool for a book with a pig-tailed girl on the cover.

So...more
Karina Magana
In the novel The Face On The Milk Carton by Caroline B. Cooney is about how a girl named Janie was stolen when she was three, but she never knew. Until one day, she sees a milk carton that has a girls face and says that she is missing. She realized that the little girl in the carton was her.She soon has thoughts about if her parents are really her parents or the kidnappers.She soon discovers many things that she wished she had never known.She found out that her parents had a daughter and she ra...more
Andie Stockwell Johns
First of all, I'm not big on the young adult genre. I read it because it's what's available, but generally I don't like it because most of the "young adults" I know are perfectly capable of reading "adult" books, but choose young adult books because they're shorter and easier. In other words I think it's a genre based largely on laziness. Don't get me wrong, the stories can be excellent; but the whole idea of writing easier, shorter books for young people who don't feel like challenging themselv...more
Olivia Ambrose
Olivia Ambrose ~ Challenged

“The Face on the Milk Carton” is the story of a young girl, Janie who finds her picture on the back of a milk carton saying that she was kidnapped 12 years ago. She must decide how she wants to deal with this and its implications. In addition, she is also falling in love with her neighbor, Reeve. I cannot decide if I like this book or not, I am simply neutral. While it was enjoyable to read, I was not thrilled about it. This is also a book which has been challenged, wh...more
Elizabeth
This is the novel I've been teaching my high intermediate learners of English as a second language for the past eight weeks. I've never read this author before, and I probably won't read anything by her again if given the choice.

I had a hard time relating to the main character/narrator in any way, but the book contains lots of new vocabulary for the students. They were unhappy that there were no pictures.

Although I really didn't enjoy reading this, I did kind of like the way it ended. I feel l...more
Jessy
this book is really good I can't wait to read the next oh and kids no younger than 9or10 should read it.
Steven
Nov 05, 2008 Steven rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Steven by: no one
This book is about how a girl named Janie was stolen when she was three, but she never knew. Until one day, she sees a milk carton that has a girls face and says that she is missing. She realized that the little girl in the carton was her.She soon has doughts about if her parents are really her parents or the kidnappers.She soon discovers many things that she wished she had never known.

She found out that her parents had a daughter and she ran away to New Jersey. One day that missing daughter h...more
Cody Kubicki
I read the book, The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline B. Cooney. It was published in 1990 by Dell Books for Young Readers. Cooney is the author of many other books that include Driver’s Ed and the sequel to Face on the Milk Carton, Whatever Happened to Janie? Now, I admit I’ve only read this one book by Cooney, but based on this first experience there’s no way that I would ever read any of her other novels. Frankly, I’m not even sure why a publisher would agree to print this book. Perhaps the...more
Shaima_M_140-504
Janie Johnson, a 15 years old girl, lived in Connecticut, United States. Janie had the most loving and caring parents, Mr. and Mrs. Johnson. One day, Janie recognized her picture on a missing persons advertisement on her friend’s milk carton. The description read that Jennie Springs, a three years old girl, was kidnapped from a mall in New Jersey, United States. Janie tried her very best to forget about the shocking advertisement. However, she started getting flashbacks of a woman and a few chi...more
Lauren DeStefano
Read this ages ago, in elementary school, but loved it.
Nailena The Mighty Panda!!!!!!
Jun 10, 2008 Nailena The Mighty Panda!!!!!! rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Nailena by: Ms.
The Face On The Milk Carton
Catherine B. Cooney

This book started out with Janie Johnson, at lunch. She was lactose intolerant so she could not drink milk. One day she was eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and she desired to wash it down with milk, even though she was allergic. Then across the cafeteria a child points out a picture of a little girl with a polka - dot dress and little pig tails. With one glimpse of the picture Janie knew it was her as a child.
But who was Jennie Spring? Jani...more
Kate
I decided to read this book as it was a book that my sister got for Christmas and recommended it to me. It was a great book with a very interesting story line. It is about a girl (called Janie) that sees her face on a milk carton at school and here quest to find her real parents and more about her past. She learns about Hannah
her so called parents daughter that ran away to join a cult and they haven't seen in ages. Once she finds her parents she must find out who she wants to live with and what...more
Kaylie Vrooman
The story "The Face on the Milk Carton" was an incredible story to read! I was shocked about how the ending had turned out. I normally don't enjoy reading mysteries but I really adored this one. The main character Janie Johnson, 15, has an inner conflict with a spiteful belief of whether he parents were the real deal, or some sneaky false kidnapper. Through out the entire story she has to stop and decide if she believes them or not. Then, she makes a tremendous discovery in her attic and is puzz...more
Raelyn
Oct 27, 2013 Raelyn added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Ages 14-18
I think that the book The Face on the Milk Carton was a good book. I would recommend it to young adults in grades 9-12. Janie Johnson is shy, and does not talk that much. She is not afraid to defend herself though. Janie/Jennie Johnson is a 15 year old girl. She has red, short curly hair. Janie's life is turned around when she notices a face on the milk carton one day at lunch and it look like her. It says "Missing" on it and the name is Jennie. When Janie/Jennie sees this she just starts thinki...more
Trisha
Although the plot made me raise my eyebrows - she sees a picture of her as a little kid on the milk carton as a "kidnapped" kid - I thought the story and the girl were just annoying.

I didn't understand Janie at all. She was whining and annoying - I have a teenager and she's got such a better head on her shoulders than this girl.

I also didn't understand the characters - Janie and Reeve didn't seem to really like each other and suddenly they do and then suddenly he's yelling at her in the car. Wh...more
Sharon
I hate rating books like this--how do I, as an adult, score my enjoyment of a book written for teenagers 20 years ago? There are things that feel dated--the microfiche readers at the library are actually less strange-seeming than the sense of innocence the characters have. Janie doesn't know what a cult is, and has never heard of the Hare Krishnas. There's an odd sense that good people do good things and bad people do bad things, which at least the author is wrestling with, though the very quest...more
Jen
Cooney was delightful in elementary school, because she writes about the secret things you hope everyone else wishes for so that there is proof you're not a crazy evil kid. Everyone wants more excitement, more mystery in their lives--what happens when you get what you wish for? This has all the wonders that make a 10-year-old swoon; teen romance, the excitement of driving for the first time, the intrigue of familial secrets, the worry about what a huge change in your life actually means. Is the...more
Alex
This is about a Girl Janie Johnson. Or at least she thought that was her name. As long as she could remember, her parents were her parents, but all that changed once she saw her own face on a "MISSING CHILD" poster on a milk carton. It was in her school cafeteria, her "mom" gave her Peanut Butter & Jelly sandwich for lunch, usually people drink milk with it. But there was problem, Janie was lactose intolerant. She just couldn't eat the sandwich like that. So she took a sip of her friend's m...more
Viviana
This book is about a girl named Janie that was stolen when she was three. Until one day, she sees a milk cartoo and she recognizes her face in the milk .She soon has doubts about if her parents are really her parents or the kidnappers.She soon discovers many things that she wished she had never known. She found out that her fake parents had once a daughter and she ran away to New Jersey. One day that missing daughter had come back with a child in her hands and that child was her, janie. Janie d...more
Gayle Francis Moffet
Caroline B. Cooney makes it clear, throughout The Face on the Milk Carton, that family is what you make of it. Janie discovers (and this is a spoiler, but it's on the back of the book) that she was kidnapped. The rest of the novel is the exploration of how Janie deals with this information. Her mom and dad are caring, kind people, and Janie wonders how they could be involved in her kidnapping.

Cooney tells the story well, especially when she makes it clear that Janie's friends are noticing her su...more
Beau
Apr 09, 2011 Beau marked it as 11-grade-advisory  ·  review of another edition
Ever wonder if you are ever living with your true mother and fathers? Imagine you are living a life where everything seemed to be real but is not. Well in this book, it is full of surprises and the first one being Janie Johnson – not really a Johnson but an unknown. This book is about a girl who finds out that she has been kidnapped and starts this journey to get to know who her real parents are.
The juicy plot starts out when Janie, the protagonist was curiously looking around and came across...more
Johanna Story
The Face on the Milk Carton is about a girl who finds her face on the back of a milk carton during lunch. The milk carton says that it is the picture of a missing girl named Jennie Spring, but her name is Janie Johnson. It says that she was kidnapped from a mall in New Jersey when she was three years old. Now the girl is sixteen and living in Connecticut. Janie has flashbacks, or "daymares", from when she was very little but she cannot piece them all together because they are so random. Sarah-Ch...more
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I have a theory (sort of) 14 123 Jul 18, 2014 08:04AM  
Let's Start a Boo...: November Book Review: The Face on the Milk Carton 1 1 Jan 26, 2014 07:13PM  
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Caroline Cooney knew in sixth grade that she wanted to be a writer when "the best teacher I ever had in my life" made writing her main focus. "He used to rip off covers from The New Yorker and pass them around and make us write a short story on whichever cover we got. I started writing then and never stopped!"
When her children were young, Caroline started writing books for young people -- with rem...more
More about Caroline B. Cooney...
Whatever Happened to Janie? (Janie Johnson, #2) The Voice on the Radio (Janie Johnson, #3) What Janie Found (Janie Johnson, #4) Code Orange Both Sides of Time (Time Travelers, #1)

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“She had gradually changed her name. "Jane" was too dull. Last year, she'd added a "y", becoming Jayne, which had more personality.” 8 likes
“She was a mind floating in an ocean of confusion.” 5 likes
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