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Missing on Superstition Mountain

(Missing on Superstition Mountain #1)

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  729 ratings  ·  129 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 not to 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, th

Hardcover, 262 pages
Published June 21st 2011 by Christy Ottaviano Books-Henry Holt and Company
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3.63  · 
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 ·  729 ratings  ·  129 reviews

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Oct 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
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
Oct 05, 2012 rated it liked it
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.
Ranger Jones
This is an excellent novel. I have read it four times now. This is an excellent opening to an epic saga. I loved the adventure and suspense.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 27, 2013 rated it liked it
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
Debbie McNeil
Jan 27, 2013 rated it liked it

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 rated it liked it
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.
Nice mystery for young readers, but the story felt unfinished.
Dane Moberly
Feb 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Missing on Superstition Mountain is a mystery book about 3 young boys named Jack, Henry, and Simon. Their family had just moved into a weird, small town in Arizona, sitting in the shadows of the enormous Superstition Mountain. Their parents had warned the boys about the mountain and told them to stay off, but their cat had ran away onto the mountain so the boys felt no other choice. While up on the mysterious mountain, the boys fall and roll down a hill, landing right next to three big, white, h ...more
Jul 09, 2017 rated it liked it
I picked this book up because kids at the library are always asking for mystery recommendations, and I don't have many to personally recommend since that's not a genre I read often. But this book was really more of an adventure story than a mystery. I found it kind of anti-climactic. I can see the kid-appeal though.
Jul 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
I think this book was very suspenseful, and had a lot of character. The 4 main characters working together to find treasure on Missing on Superstition Mountain was intriguing, and at some points I couldn't put the book down.
Eileen Winfrey
Oct 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Read this book in about an hour and a half, and think it would be a great mystery recommendation for third graders. Three brothers go up a mountain to find their cat and find three skulls instead. Mystery ensues. Glad to have a mystery to recommend to this age level and glad there is more than one!
Oct 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
The book was good. I wished the book had more information about where they when it was and more information about the boys. But overall its great, I've read it twice.
Sep 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Loved Loved Loved this book!! And the rest of the series! Adore the characters and setting! recommended for everyone
Aziz Güzsoy
Dec 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A nice book for adventure lovers.
Katie Fitzgerald
Apr 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
Missing on Superstition Mountain is a fast-paced adventure novel by Elise Broach, who is the author of Masterpiece and Shakespeare’s Secret. Three brothers - Simon, Henry, and Jack Barker - move with their parents to Arizona. Their parents warn them to steer clear of Superstition Mountain, but since they are vague about why, the boys take it upon themselves to go exploring. What they find - a creepy atmosphere and three human skulls - sparks their interest and sends them, along with a neighbor g ...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-
Feb 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I light-hearted adventure romp in the desert. Fun and easy read for boys and girls alike.
Cathy Cole
Sep 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
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
Feb 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
I bought this series of books while visiting my daughter in Apache Junction, Arizona. She has a clear view of Superstition Mountain from her front porch. I'd already fallen in love with the area on previous visits, and my daughter and I were discussing writing a series of books for 7-12 year olds that revolve around Superstition Mountain and its superstitions/legends. So, I am reading these books just to get a feel for writing in that age range (I usually write YA fantasy or paranormal and I'm r ...more
Jun 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya
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
Judy Desetti
Aug 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Gr 3- 5
Shelves: 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
Oct 15, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: ncbla
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
Jun 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, childrens, 2014
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
Dec 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Kaethe Douglas
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
Aug 03, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: juv, mystery
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
May 10, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: kid-book, mystery
This is a good read-aloud for third and fourth grade classes, and possibly second grade. The Barker boys have been moved from Illinois to the tiny town of Superstition, Arizona. They're just about as thrilled as one would expect three boys who've been plopped into a completely different environment can be, or, not at all.

Being bored, and feeling the need to chase the cat when she's run away, the boys follow their noses right up the mountain their parents have forbidden them. The expected troubl
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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

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)