These days, dystopian novels are all the rage with the kids. Personally, I actually like them, too. Among the Hidden is an older book, so it's one that many kids today have probably not stumbled upon on their own.
In a time when third children are forbidden, Luke tries to live his life with his family out of sight of the public. He has a loving family and lives in a somewhat out of the way place. This allows him to go outside and do chores around the farm with his two older brothers.
But, then, things begin to change when the forest near his home is cut down to make way for new homes. The increase in population forces his family to keep Luke completely hidden inside. This way of life begins to weigh on him, until he catches a glimpse of what he thinks is another forbidden child.
Eventually, Luke meets this other third child, named Jen. He is then exposed to a whole new way of thinking and living. He's taking risks and learning more about the world he lives in.
Luke discovers that there are many more third children than he could have ever imagined, and there is a plot brewing to try to change their situation. Jen, is at the center of it. But, is it too dangerous? Is it worth the risk?
This first book in the series is engaging and moves at a quick pace. Readers who enjoy the idea of dystopian societies, but dislike the violence or graphic scenes that are often in more recent books, like The Hunger Games or Divergent, may find this book more to their liking. Parents can take comfort in the fact that the relationship between Luke and Jen is completely platonic. This book is recommended for grades three and up.
Elizabeth Woodrum's Blog
Elizabeth Woodrum is the author of the children's book series, The Maisy Files. She is also a full-time teacher and creator of teaching materials that can be found on Teachers Pay Teachers. This blog is a mix of teaching and author topics.