Saturday, June 16, 2012

More From Michael

Our old friend Michael has come through again. Michael has always found good reads and this time he's giving us the lowdown on a very well-known series.

The Shadow Children Sequence, book 1
Among the Hidden
by Margaret Peterson Haddix
In an depressing future, the government has only allowed two children to be born. Third children will probably be killed, along with their parents. Luke Garner is one of those kids. He's had to hide for years on his family's farm, and only his four family members know about him. Then one day a new neighborhood is built in the woods, and Luke has to stay inside for the rest of his life. He's never ridden in a car, never watched TV, and never even walked through the corn pasture. Luke is 12. But when he finds that there are more third children and that they're planning a rally, Luke finds an unbelievable adventure and danger waiting for him at every turn. Well, I must say that this review really hypes up the book a lot. It's pretty slow-moving, and there's no mystery or intrigue at all until chapter 9. I kept reading because I thought that there might be some thriller-type stuff, and there is, a little bit. Mostly it's an alternate future book. I will keep reading the series, though, and more book reviews are yet to come! Overall, it's worth reading.

The Shadow Children Sequence, book 2
Among the imposters
by Margaret Peterson Haddix

    After coming out of hiding, Luke Garner is enrolled in Hendricks School for Boys. But there he finds suspicious things about the students and the building itself. Plus, he thinks there might be other third children like him there. But are any if them spies for the Population Police? Well, I must say that this book is an improvement on the last time, but again, not much excitement til chapter 14. But there are twists I never would have expected. If you like realistic fiction with a touch of thriller, than this is more your series. It's kind of like Gordon Korman's On the Run meets Haddix's The Missing. I'm still hoping it picks up on the action as I read more and more.

The Shadow Children Sequence, book 3
Among the Betrayed
by Margaret Peterson Haddix
At the end of Among the Imposters, Jason was arrested. You might also remember that Nina was arrested too, since she was his accomplice. Well, she wasn't. Or, so she tries to tell the Population Police. She claims that Jason betrayed her. But when the Population Police offer her freedom, she can't resist. All she has to do is pretend to be somebody's cellmate, get them to trust her, and then betray them. But later she finds out that her cellmates are 10, 9, and 6 years old. Can she betray such lovable kids? Should she betray anybody at all? And what will happen if she fails? These questions will be answered in the book. As you can see if you just read this review, once again Haddix has everything but excitement in this book. She has intrigue, romance, emotional qualities, inspirational parts, and realistic aspects. But she completely lacks excitement. I don't know if this book is worth the read. Yes, it does have some amazing twists at the end, but it's not at all exciting. Plus, we've been following Luke Garner this whole time, and suddenly a secondary character, a bad guy no less, now becomes the main character. I fail to see how this is Haddix's most popular series. You can read it if you want to, but for a thrill-seeker like me, it was boring until the very end.

The Shadow Children Sequence, book 4
Among the Barons
by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Now that the situation with Nina is worked out, we can return to Luke Garner, who has taken on the identity of Lee Grant. Well, lo and behold, the real Lee Grant's brother, Smithfield, comes to school. Smits is annoying, but he's also mysterious, and no one know quite why the Grants sent him to school there. Things complicate when Luke and Smits are asked to return home, to the Grants' house. Plus, can Luke trust Smits' menacing bodyguard, Oscar? This book is probably the most mysterious and intriguing so far. And... wait for it... there's and exciting scene! I wasn't even expecting it! Haddix finally delivered! This book is definitely worth the read!

The Shadow Children Sequence, book 5
Among the Brave
by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Trey, who had just saved Luke's life from that chandelier, still considers himself a coward. But when he, along with Luke's brother Mark, have to rescue Luke, Nina, Joel, John, the chauffeur, and Mr Talbot, Trey is forced into courage. Finally! A car chase and shootout! This is what I've been waiting for! This book is the best one yet. Definitely worth reading!

 Thanks, Michael! I'm very impressed by your honest reactions. It's good to see that it got good at the end. How about the rest of you? Have any of you read any of The Shadow Children books? Did you like them? Or not? What the books in Haddix's Found series? I read the first one and liked it a whole lot. (see my review here) Send us  your reactions. Reader guys everywhere are dying to know!