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Missing on Superstition Mountain (Missing on Superstition Mountain #1)

3.49 of 5 stars 3.49  ·  rating details  ·  488 ratings  ·  105 reviews
It’s summer and the three Barker brothers—Simon, Henry, and Jack—just moved from Illinois to Arizona. Their parents have warned them repeatedly notto explore Superstition Mountain, which is near their home. But when their cat Josie goes missing, they see no other choice. There’s something unusually creepy about the mountain and after the boys find three human skulls, they ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published May 22nd 2012 by Square Fish (first published June 21st 2011)
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I have really enjoyed Elise Broach's other books, Shakespeare's Secret and Masterpiece. So I was looking forward to reading this one. I did enjoy it. I wouldn't call it compelling exactly, but it was interesting to go with the Barker brothers and their friend Delilah on their adventures. I, being a librarian, really appreciated how Broach showed the children searching out answers in several different ways, at the library, seeking witnesses, and going right to the scene of the mysterious happenin ...more
I read this for fun since the cub scouts were talking about tall tales. Many of the "missing" people are actual real people who went missing. A fun, not too scary book if you are 8-10 years old.
The three Barker boys and their parents have just moved to Superstition, Arizona, with the infamous Superstition Mountains practically in their backyard. Chasing their cat, the boys venture up into the mountains and are struck by the ominous feeling of the place--and finding those bones doesn't help. On their return, their parents and a police officer forbid them ever to go into the mountains again, which of course just makes them curious. With the help of a pushy neighbor girl, they start inves ...more
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Judy Desetti
Aug 27, 2014 Judy Desetti rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Gr 3- 5
Shelves: boys, audio, mystery
I was disappointed in the story. It was okay but not as good as I was hoping for. Perhaps I was expecting something for a bit older student. Three brothers and a friend go off to search for the skeleton heads they had seen while chasing their runaway cat in a canyon of the mysterious mountains surrounding their small town. It was a mystery of figuring out why it is called Superstition Mountain and why adults won't talk about it. I did not like the youngest brother, he was so annoying! I was disa ...more
Debbie McNeil

Elise Broach is so good at writing children's literature; close read books, and exemplars of complex text, but I couldn't love this book. She set the stage creating a spooky ambiance and interesting characters but it doesn't really go anywhere or give the reader satisfying resolutions. It is too long a book to just promise to develop more in subsequent sequels. Big build-ups without the big bang!- Kinda like this time in college.....
Jan 07, 2012 Wendy rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Darsa's lot
A solid mystery that reminded me of Peggy Parish's books about Jed, Bill, and Liza. I love that scene in juvenile mysteries where they have to go searching through old newspapers, which I first met in The Dollhouse Murders--came upon it twice in two days this week. How refreshing to have a possibly eeeevil librarian instead of a cool/hip/helpful one.
Salina Stelly
I read this aloud to my six and four year old. The six year old really enjoyed it and is now asking to read the second book, Treasure on Superstition Mountain. The four year old was not as interested but enough so to keep her quiet. As a parent I was not thrilled about how often the characters disobeyed and deceived their parents. In these instances the characters even reflect that they know they shouldn't do something but they justify it and do it anyway. This left me having to do some damage c ...more
Cathy Cole
Elise Broach does an excellent job of weaving together various legends about the Superstition Mountains just outside of Phoenix, Arizona-- including the one about the Lost Dutchman Mine. Children will be reading an exciting tale of adventure, but they'll also be absorbing the deeper subjects of history, friendship, and exploration.

When this book was offered to me, I wasn't told that it was a children's book, but since it is a mystery, and it is set right in my own backyard, it didn't make much
Nice mystery for young readers, but the story felt unfinished.
Since I've loved Broach's other works, I thought I'd been a fan of this one too. But I wasn't. It's fine, it just wasn't great. With the story centered on the middle of three brothers, there's a lot of gender assumptions being made. Even though Henry accepts Delilah on their adventures, he still seems weirdly focused on her as a girl, rather than as another person. I like the set-up of the town and the mountain and the mystery, but the story feels kind of unresolved, rather than complete in itse ...more
This is a pretty compelling mystery story for the early elementary-school set (and even my 5 year old preschooler) about three brothers and their female friend, who explore a mysterious mountain together. I liked the author’s attempt to keep up the mystery by having parents limit the kids’ access to technology—hard to make it work, otherwise. What I didn’t like was the thread of sexism running through the novel: youngest brother, Jack, repeatedly makes sexist comments that nobody calls him on, t ...more
Like many children's mysteries, this one starts with the family moving from where the kids grew up to a new state/town and going exploring where they shouldn't go exploring.

In this case, Simon, Henry and Jack, have just moved from Chicago to Superstition, Arizona. Out their back door, they can see Superstition Mountain, but they are warned repeatedly by parents and the police not to go there. So of course they do. When Jack falls down a steep embankment, Simon and Henry go after him, and they fi
The Barker boys (Simon, Henry and Jake) have just moved from Chicago to Superstition, Arizona. One day their cat Josie runs off and they follow her up Superstition Mountain even though they have been repeatedly warned never to go into the mountains. They don't find Josie but they do find three skulls lined up looking into a canyon. Back in Superstition, with new friend Delilah, they start researching the mountain and discover that lots of people have died and gone missing there. They go back up ...more
Mary Kate
A fortune in gold, a possible curse, unexplained deaths, missing treasure maps and missing people... The story of the Lost Dutchman's Mine has them all and seasoned author Elise Broach (Shakespeare's Secret, Masterpiece) has chosen this fascinating piece of western lore around which to build her new middle school trilogy.

Set in central Arizona, the first of that trilogy - Missing on Superstition Mountain - introduces us to the Barker brothers - 11 year old Simon (the science lover with know-it-
It's the summer, and the Barkers have just moved from Chicago to the small town of Superstition, Arizona. When the family cat, Josie, disappears into the nearby mountains, the three boys in the family try to find her. They don't find Josie, but they find three skulls. Once they arrive back home, they become determined to find out more about Superstition Mountain, particularly why the adults in the town warn them away from the area. After a rocky introduction, the girl next door, Delilah, ends up ...more
Ages 8-12. When Henry and his brothers, Simon and Jack, try to catch Josie, their runaway cat, they chase her up into Superstition Mountain, where they've been forbidden to go. Jack takes a tumble and ends up on a cliff with three skulls, arranged in a row looking out into a canyon. The boys set out on a quest to find out who the skulls belonged to, and discover a shroud of mystery behind the mountain, with all the adults in town discouraging them from exploring. Why does everyone think Supersti ...more
This started out as an intriguing, very approachable mystery - the focus was on atmosphere and the mystery rather than characters, which is great for plot-driven readers. The three brothers were identified by shorthand, rather than real character development, but this allows more reluctant readers to get right to the mystery - and the premise is great.

My only real complaint is that the story offers no real resolution. I started the book expecting a stand-alone story, only realizing towards the
Addison Children
Three boys who just moved from Illinois to the Superstition Mountains in Arizona meet up with a girl who is also new to the area. They all manage to evade lax parental supervision and get lost, hurt, nearly killed searching for the Lost Dutchman mine. It was a fun little read before our own visit to the Superstition Mountains. We did not believe the boys would have been very successful in digging a garden (their cover story when going up the mountain).
Simon, Henry, and Jack have just moved from Chicago to the town of Superstition, Arizona. Their mother inherited the house from her uncle Hank, a truly western character. The boys are bored and anxious about their missing cat, so they explore Superstition Mountain, even though they have been warned to stay off of the mountain. While searching for their lost cat, they find three lined up in a row guarding a canyon. The boys scramble down the eerie mountain. In town, they meet a girl, Delilah and ...more
I think the title and cover of this book are slightly misleading, since it would appear a bunch of kids gets lost on a mountain, which isn't really what the book is about. It starts out with quite a bit of excitement, but then the pace slows for a huge part of the book while the kids do research and plan. Then the ending picks up again.

Clearly there's meant to be a sequel, since there are many unanswered questions and dropped hints, so many that I wonder how they can all be answered. Is the libr
When their cat Josie runs away, Simon, Henry & Jack follow her up Superstition Mountain where they are not supposed to go. Though they don't find the cat, they find three skulls and the mystery begins. Just what is going on up on Superstition Mountain? Mysterious disappearances and deaths seem to be frequent. The boys, plus Delila - their plucky friend - pursue the mystery at their own peril
Childrens Librarian
I really liked the book a lot but I will be disappointed if there is not a sequel. There were lots of things left unanswered. This is a great story about two families that moved to Arizona near a spooky/mysterious mountain that most of the adults in the area will not even talk about why kids are not allowed to go up there. The kids have very inventive ways of getting around their parents after the three boys follow their cat up the mountain and find three skulls which they left on the mountain. ...more
Jenn Estepp
Pretty solid, adventure-type kid lit. Not quite so memorable or accomplished as others by Broach, but the characters are likable enough and the real life stuff that it's based around is pretty interesting. In fact, maybe the best part of reading this was falling into the Wikipedia rabbit hole upon conclusion. Which, I guess is not necessarily a ringing endorsement, but, yeah. I think I'd probably have liked it more if the individual kids in the book had been more distinct/had more personality an ...more
Gwen the Librarian
While I have preferred Broach's writing for kids slightly older than the target audience here, this is a solid adventure/mystery for middle readers.

When the three Barker brothers move to a new town, they are bored and loathe to make friends with the lone girl who is in their neighborhood for the summer. Soon, however, adventure calls after many adults warn the kids to stay off Superstition Mountain. Silly grown-ups! The kids discover some skulls on the mountain after chasing their cat on aftern
Carly Thompson
Adventure/mystery for middle-grade readers. This novel, the first is a series, details the adventures of three brothers and their female neighbor. Recently arrived in Superstition, Arizona from Illinois, Simon, Henry, and Jack go in search of their lost cat and discover three mysterious skulls on the nearby Superstition mountain. The boys begin to investigate the disappearances and legendary gold mine on the mountain.

This was an action packed adventure story and the author did a good job capturi
Alyssa Calhoun
Would make a great read-aloud mystery, and has some history in it too. There is a character for nearly everyone to relate to, and I think after reading the first book, students would want to hear the next book in the series.
Anastasia Tuckness
Surprisingly fun mystery about a family of three boys who moves to Arizona in the summer and really want to hike up the "cursed" superstition mountain. They make friends with a girl and look up lots of local history.
Excellent mystery adventure for 9-14 year olds. Not sophisticated or terribly deep, but a nice realistic group of kids. I believe this is the first in a series. Broach is a uniformly good writer--no missteps.
Good mystery book for kids. Three brothers and their neighbor go exploring in Superstition Mountains and Lost Dutchman's mine. Reminded me of when we visited Lost Dutchman's State Park and Goldfield ghost town in Superstition near Apache Junction, Arizona.
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Elise Broach is the New York Times bestselling author of children's books including Masterpiece, Shakespeare's Secret, Desert Crossing, Missing on Superstition Mountain (the first book in the Superstition Mountain Trilogy) as well as several picture books. Her books have been selected as ALA notable books, Junior Library Guild selections, a Publishers Weekly Best Children's Book, a New York Public ...more
More about Elise Broach...

Other Books in the Series

Missing on Superstition Mountain (3 books)
  • Treasure on Superstition Mountain (Missing on Superstition Mountain, #2)
  • Revenge of Superstition Mountain (Missing on Superstition Mountain, #3)
Shakespeare's Secret Masterpiece When Dinosaurs Came with Everything Desert Crossing Wet Dog!

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