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Shadow Children (Boxed Set): Among the Hidden; Among the Impostors; Among the Betrayed; Among the Barons

4.34  ·  Rating Details ·  1,607 Ratings  ·  95 Reviews
Imagine a world where families are allowed only two children. Illegal third children -- shadow children -- must live in hiding. If they are discovered, there is only one punishment: Death.
Among the Hidden
An ALA Best Book for Young Adults
An ALA Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers
An American Booksellers Association Kids' Pick of the List
Among the Impostors
Paperback, 720 pages
Published September 1st 2004 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published August 31st 2004)
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Top 100 Middle School Must-Reads
91st out of 1,133 books — 2,517 voters
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41st out of 100 books — 66 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,500)
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Mar 29, 2009 Christian rated it it was ok
Shelves: kids-books
One of my students wanted these to be added to our classroom library. Since I like to be familiar with what the kids in my class are reading, I figured I should read these before putting them on the shelf.

The premise of the series is a world similar to our own, in the near future, families are prevented from having more than two children. A totalitarian government rules the country and the Population Police enforce the government's Population Law, killing or imprisoning "shadow
Jan 13, 2009 Betsy rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed the series quite a bit. I read all six books and liked each one. I liked how the author would switch the focus onto different characters for each of the books. I was an easy read but had deep messages.
Mar 08, 2008 Megan rated it it was amazing
Kids love this series! It is really easy to read, follow, and find yourself getting into.

In the beginning of the book we meet Luke who is the third and youngest child in his family. However, we quickly learn that life for Luke is much different than life for his brothers. Luke is rarely able to go outside, he is not allowed to go to school, and he does not have any friends. As the novel continues, we learn that where Luke lives third children are illegal and if they are found then they will be
Feb 12, 2008 Lindsey rated it really liked it
A quick read! I love young adult fiction! This entire series is yet another way that someone depicts how the future could be. I felt the courage of youth and felt their desires to make the world a better place. I saw a lot of myself in these characters that struggled with physical as well as emotional pain trying to live what they thought was right...finding truth within themselves and how they needed to share truth with others. Through differing books, you have reactions and stories from differ ...more
Charity Bradford
I actually still need to read Among the Barons, but here is my review for the 1st three.

The series was hard for me to get into. The first book dragged and I had problems with Luke. He acted too young for the age he was supposed to be. Now I know that's because of his situation, but it still made it hard for me to get into his character.

I enjoyed books two and three better.
Jan 10, 2012 Angel rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed the box series and was drawn in to rush out and buy the additional books. This is a great line of stories of what it would be like if you could only have two children, or should I say, if you are an illegal third child. It is adventurous and full of suspense! These are great chapter books and I recommend them highly!
Jan 16, 2009 Brianna rated it it was amazing
These book's are about shadow children who are either a third child or above.. For them it is illegal to be alive.. This book is very good, it also describes the rights some have and those who will go and fight for what they believe in.. I am going to start on "Among The Barons" when i get back to my school..
Jolene Bernhardt
Jul 24, 2012 Jolene Bernhardt rated it it was amazing
I have read this to my students for years and they love them. It always conjures up great discussion on being the third child. How would our lives/families be different?
Mar 19, 2009 Carissa rated it it was amazing
I love this book, it is so suspensfull, a book that keeps you on the edge of your seat, and you never want to quit reading utill you know the end.
Mar 20, 2009 Justie is currently reading it
Super amazing series.

Its becoming so real!

Keeps you on the edge of youe seat.

A must read!!
Jul 31, 2011 Taylor rated it it was amazing
These are great. The whole idea behind the books is so interesting, and the different perspectives of the different characters makes it even more so. Many people may have heard of how China has a population restriction law right? Well, in this book there were extreme food shortages and starvation so the law has become world-wide and strictly enforced by the Population Police. Third children, or "Shadow Children" are illegal and will be tortured for information and killed if they are found. There ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 29, 2012 Rebecca rated it liked it
Shelves: engl-420
This seven-book series tells of a futuristic dystopia where families are allowed to have only two children. The main protagonist of the series, Luke, is a third child. The series tells of how he came to find other third children, leave home for the first time to try and make a difference in the world, and, eventually, how he helps overturn the laws prohibiting third children. At times the plot moved slowly (particularly in the first parts of the first and second books),
May 10, 2012 Tirzah rated it it was ok
Shelves: dystopian
This series was one of those dusty ones on my to-read shelf: I knew someday I would read them and the someday took a long time. I was interested in them, but other books had higher priority. Finally, I read the books. While I was glad I read them, I have to say "The Shadow Children" series was just an okay series.

The concept is compelling: set in the future world, the law orders only two children per couple. Failure to comply to this bullying results in death. One third child will rise to fight
Krista Stevens
This is a good series for a younger reader. Explores how a totalitarian government tries to control its population (needlessly) but making a scapegoat out of children who are third in their families and my killing those children and their families if they're caught.

People begin to rebel and the series follows different children as they try to change forces much greater than them. The kids are surprisingly realistic - sometimes the characters did things I didn't expect, but stayed in character. A
Karen Lynn
Aug 03, 2014 Karen Lynn rated it it was amazing
I read this series because my 9 year old son was reading them and talking about them so fondly. in really enjoyed them. A very easy read but very thought provoking and I cared about the characters.
Mar 03, 2016 Hayden rated it really liked it
It is a rely good book in my opinion, if you like books like this then you might love it.It is a book about a family that has three kids and you can only have one or two kids.and every time the polices or a person they wood need to hide the third child so he douse not get cote.
Crystal Stoll
May 11, 2016 Crystal Stoll rated it it was amazing
What happens when the government is involved with over-population? This (well, possibly). Fascinating dystopian book series.
Ronda Bowman
Mar 16, 2015 Ronda Bowman rated it it was amazing
Another Haddix masterpiece. I thought this series actually kept on being compelling throughout, unlike so many.
Mar 07, 2014 Maria added it
I love these books the are really cool and interesting to read
Aug 27, 2014 Sarah rated it really liked it
Loved the series although I didn't finish it.
Aug 01, 2014 Shelby rated it liked it
A Really good Book set for kids to read.
Dec 01, 2014 Elise added it
It was so good I loved it
Jan 25, 2015 Anneliese rated it it was amazing
yes. just yes.
Apr 06, 2008 Beth rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone
These books are the first four in the Shadow Children series. Its a great read if you like realistic fiction. It is based in the future when there is a population law that stops families from having more than two children. Its suspensful and unpredictable. I've read the first four but there is also Among the Brave, Among The Enemy, and Among The Free.
Jul 02, 2008 Kristen rated it liked it
This is the story of a third child in a world where couples are only allowed two children. Third children must hide and are considered Shadow Children. It's interesting to comtemplate a society like this one. You find yourself cheering on the shadow children as they try to find a place for themselves and elude the Population Police. Although I read the entire series, I must admit that the latter books lost momentum and became a little too predictable.
Aug 14, 2011 nicki rated it really liked it
as a kid Haddix was my favorite author her ability to create suspense is phenomonal. she makes you want to keep reading and reading and reading until you have finished the whole book in one night. (believed me it happend on several occasions). the shadow children series was definetly one of her best and most intriguing series i loved it a lot. the only bad part was the ending it felt kind of rushed. but all in all the series was great.
Sep 11, 2010 Ashley rated it it was amazing
so when i looked at the cover i didn't know that Luke {main charter} was a third child in his family that had to hide from the poulation police. Luke thought he was the only third child alive but when the population police cut down there family farm to build new homes will luke have the courge to come out of hidding to see next door if he's the only third child alive? find out for yourself and read the seires!just like i am :-}
Apr 08, 2008 Lindsey rated it it was amazing
This series is absolutely amazing!!! One of my 4th grade students introduced me to them. I have read the entire series, and every book was difficult to put down. Even though these books are considered children's literature, adults will find they contain deep topics to prob, analyze, and discuss. Don't let the children's literature genre turn you off. These books are definite must reads.
Oct 08, 2014 14alp6 rated it really liked it
This book is amazing if your into mystery. It's about a boy and his family, but his family can't have the youngest son being found or he gets taken away
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Among the Hidden ...: comunity 2 5 May 16, 2013 06:59AM  
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Margaret Peterson Haddix grew up on a farm near Washington Court House, Ohio. She graduated from Miami University (of Ohio) with degrees in English/journalism, English/creative writing and history. Before her first book was published, she worked as a newspaper copy editor in Fort Wayne, Indiana; a newspaper reporter in Indianapolis; and a community college instructor and freelance writer in Danvil ...more
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