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Among the Hidden

(Shadow Children #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  115,300 ratings  ·  6,305 reviews

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
Paperback, 153 pages
Published June 1st 2006 by Aladdin Paperbacks (first published September 1st 1998)
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Ashmita Khurana I have searched this question's answer and it says that this book "Among the Hidden" takes place in Indianapolis.…moreI have searched this question's answer and it says that this book "Among the Hidden" takes place in Indianapolis.(less)
Pamela This book can stand alone. The books that come after it, however, make a lot more sense if read in sequence.

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Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  115,300 ratings  ·  6,305 reviews

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Nov 25, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: no one
I am adding this book as a warning. The first book and a half are very interesting and the plot is fascinating. DO NOT LET YOUR CHILDREN READ THESE BOOKS!! Somewhere in the second book, it begins to get quite violent. By the fourth or fifth book, there is holocaust-type violence, children killing in cold blood, and outrageous examples of treachery and hate. These books are dangerous, as the first one is so good. Please use caution when you give your children books to read. I learned the hard way ...more
Kelly H. (Maybedog)
The issue faced by the characters in the book, that of overpopulation and what to do about it, is an important one, and deserves to have a children's book written about it. The possibility that we will one day be limited to two children or fewer per family, and people will undergo forced sterilization, is not so unlikely. China already has strict population control laws (one child) with heavy fines for violators.

However the author simplifies the issue to a simple black and white set of extremes.
Mar 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I love this book! Iwould recomend it for anybody who has a craving for excitment and adventure. I also love the use of words, and the excitment. I cannot stop reading the book. Margaret Peterson Haddix is a tallented auther and has AMAZING creativity with books and words. Any book that she writes is or will be wonderfull.
Mariah Roze
Jul 25, 2013 rated it liked it
I'm reading this book to my students and they love it, but I found it to be very boring. I'm not sure how others feel but nothing happens in this book, especially the first half. I read through the first half of the book super bored. ...more
Sep 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Fifth Read:
September 23, 2019 - November 7, 2019
5 Stars
I read this with my current grade 6 class and my whole class was really invested in this story. They enjoyment of the story made me realize how much I love this book.

Fourth Read:
September 24, 2018 - November 8, 2018
4 Stars
I read this with my grade 6 class. I had some students really get into the story.

Third Read: February 16, 2018 - February 26, 2018
4 Stars
I read this with my grade 6 class. They loved it.

Second Read: January 12, 2018 -
After reading this, I am very surprised that the publishers determined the targeted reading age group to be "Age 8-12".

It's a bit like Brave New World for YA. (See that bold print in the back that says: "an ALA Best Book for Young Adults".)
Amber J
I try to express only my most honest opinion in a spoiler-free way. If you feel anything in my review is a spoiler and is not already hidden in spoiler brackets please let me know. Thank you.

Well, I can see why this book got so many awards in its day. It's an amazing book of 'what if'. What if the government took the overpopulation crisis in their own hands. Banning people from having more than 2 children. What if some families had 3 children anyways.

One of the things that struck me most was the
Mar 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katie Grace
Dec 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Aww, memories! I remember reading this when I was nine or ten. It was fun to revisit the world, though I'm not sure if I'll reread the other 12 or so in the series. Though I do want to know what happens... Hm, we'll see. ...more
Dec 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Among the Hidden...a wonderful book...futuristic!! Luke Garner is a third child, a hidden child. After the government passed the population law, third children and pets have been outlawed. But Luke's mother had always wanted four boys-"Matthew, Mark, Luke and John," she says.
When Luke's farmland is bought to be turned into a neighborhood of barons, Luke takes interest to watching out of his attic vents. The Sports family's home, the Blonde family's home...he names them all. But wait...was tha
Dec 20, 2008 rated it liked it
This is a decent book about a fictional community where the government controls everything. The people are only allowed to have 2 children so anything after 2 they hide them. This is a story about a boy that has been hidden his entire life and find out that there are other hidden children out there as well. He meets a girl and they become friends.
I have mixed feelings about this book. The reason I read it was because a friend of mine asked me about it. Her 11 year-old son read it and he was ups
Jan 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Wow! I can't wait to read the rest of the series. Luke is a "third" child in a society that inforces population control. Families are allowed only two children. He is loved but lead a very solitary life. He meets another "third" child, Jen, and they form a friendship. Jen is the leader of a group of thirds and she's trying to change the laws so they no longer have to hide. Very inspiring, tender and quite a cliff hanger! ...more
Dec 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing
i love this book. read others in the series to continue the adventure.
Scottsdale Public Library
In this dystopian novel, the main character, Luke, is a third child in a world where the population law forbids a family from having more than two children. At first, he is able to easily hide from the Population Police, thanks to his house being near a deserted forest. Although he cannot go to school, shops, or any public place in general, he can still play outside with his two older brothers.

This all changes when the forest that hid him for years is cut down to make space for new, expensive m
Fred Kirchner
Feb 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: teen-fiction
I was not expecting too much, and was rewarded with a pleasantly surprising read. You can fly through this book in just a few hours, but why should you...? Here's why: Haddix creates a charming, star-crossed protagonist living in a dystopian society as a Shadow Child. Families are only allowed two kids. Luke is the third child to a strapped farming couple living on the edge of civilization. For most of his life, Luke's had the run of the back forty, but when a new housing development bring wealt ...more
Oct 08, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars. This story was so good, I read it in one sitting. If only I had the sequel, I would be reading it already. Really, that's how much I enjoyed it. It's very well told, the setting is believable and cruel, and... Well, there're lots of great things to say about it, instead I'll just recommend you read it. ...more
Julie Klein
Sep 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book is GREAT so far! Wonderful recommendation by one of my fabulous students. Can't wait to discuss it in book club :) ...more
Jan 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I LOVE THIS BOOK! I read it last year in two days. The ending made me cry and wanting more. I love the series and want to maybe want to reread the series again!
Daisy W
Oct 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Dec 25, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a good start to a series, but it felt like a non-ending or an obvious sequel set up. Even in a young adult series each book should be able to stand alone in terms of satisfying the reader that the story is over, this one didn't really do that for me. The character development was ok but again, I'm not going to cut it slack for being for young readers, there were several characters that should have been more dimensional but weren't. As an example Jen's dad needed to be introduced by ...more
Sep 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"Among the hidden” written by Margaret Peterson is a book where you are able to feel all of these emotions at once and lose your self. I’m not able to relate to the book but I’m able to relate to the emotions of the main character, Luke. I am able to relate to his emotions because I have felt what he is feeling. The book really made me feel so many feelings at once so I didn’t know what to feel. This book is very special, even my sister thought it was a fascinating book. I can tell that the auth ...more
Jen Durand
Apr 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
When childhood memories, bring you back you know it is a good book. Lots of mystery, drama, and sprinkles of actions. So great. I loved it and am constantly recommending it to my younger siblings.
Aug 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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📗 A shocking and riveting read, Among The Hidden is a perfect start to the seven book series Shadow Children. This book tells the tale of Luke, a third child in a world that only allows two children per family. Finding that the spaces he's allowed to live in are becoming increasingly smaller, he makes a series of decisions that will change his life and the lives of those around him forever.

📕 I wasn't sure if I would like this book at first, I've never read a
E2 Elaine
Aug 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The character Luke is a lot like me because in the book he did not take risks, I thought he is like me because most of the time I don't like taking risks. For example, when hid best and only friend wanted to go to the population police to protest for 3rd child, he didn't want to go because he didn't want to take risks. For me, when the percentage of winning/success is very low I don't take risks ...more
Lucy (Talk Less, Smile More)
I just have to say, what an amazing start to a series! For the past couple of months, I've been having a hard time finding books that'll hold my interest. But once I picked up 'Among The Hidden,' I was immediately sucked into this world (well, it did have it's draggy bits, but nevertheless, I was sucked in). I can't quite explain it, but it gave me all of those Unwind feels. This isn't your average dystopian book, I feel that it can stand on its own, much like Unwind, it was very unique, but I d ...more
Feb 02, 2021 added it
What... is gonna happen... next
Mar 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A. The thing I like about the book is that Luke’s family lived on a farm and they were not rich. And if they were rich they would keep on bribing people and that would make the book boring.
B. The things I did not like are how Jen went to the rally and the government did that very cruel thing to the kids.
1. The characters in the story were Luke, Mathew and mark (Luke’s brothers) Jen Luke’s best friend, Luke’s mom and dad, and Jen’s dad.
2. The most important scene of the book was when Luke d
Lisa Godfrees
Mar 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
Anyone who has spent time around middle grade books, whether library or book fairs, has probably seen Haddix books. Margaret Peterson Haddix is a prolific author of MG fiction. Among the Hidden is the first book of hers I have read. I selected it particularly because of its premise: due to severe overpopulation, the government has passed laws that allow couples to have only two children. Disobedience is punished by death. Luke is a third child, a shadow child. He can’t go outside, have friends, ...more
Nov 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Among The Hidden was written by Margaret Peterson Haddix, this is a fiction book. This book had a lot of parts that made me stare into the book. The word hidden in the title has a lot to do with what occurs in the book, actually the book revolves around the word hidden.

A strength in the book that I noticed was how the author put in events that where in the characters past to help give a glimpse of the character. For example the author mentioned the main character, Luke celebrating his birthday.
Janet Amaya
Mar 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
What I like about this book:
• It’s a captivating book; you just want to keep reading it.
• The book is very suspenseful; you don’t know what’s going to happen next.

For example, it was captivating because you didn’t know what he was going to do he was somewhat indecisive. Another example was that you didn’t know what was going to happen next, so many things happened that you didn’t think we’re going to happen.

One thing I didn’t like about the book is that the ending is bittersweet.

Characters: Luke
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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

Other books in the series

Shadow Children (7 books)
  • Among the Impostors (Shadow Children, #2)
  • Among the Betrayed (Shadow Children, #3)
  • Among the Barons (Shadow Children, #4)
  • Among the Brave (Shadow Children, #5)
  • Among the Enemy (Shadow Children, #6)
  • Among the Free (Shadow Children, #7)

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“I want to Live! Not Die, Not Hide, LIVE!” 118 likes
“Sure you can be a coward and hope somone else changes the wrld for you. You can hide up in that attic of yours until someone knocks on the door and says, 'Oh, hey, they freed the hidden. Want to come out?' Is that what you want"
Luke didnt answer
"You've got to come, Luke, or you'll hate yourself the rest of your life. When you dont have to hide anymore, even years from now, there'll always be some small part of you whispering 'I don't deserve this. I didnt fight for it. I'm not worth it.' And you are, Luke, you are. You're smart and funny and nice, and you should be living life, instead of being buried alive in that old house of yours”
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