Found: The Missing, Book 1 Book Poster Image

Found: The Missing, Book 1



Time-travel series start is suspenseful.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive role models

The main characters are brave, loyal, and try to do the right thing.


Adults fight, one uses a Taser on another, one uses it on a child.

Not applicable
Not applicable

Food, electronics, video game, store, soda brands mentioned.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there's little to be concerned with here: some brands are mentioned, there's some mild fighting and use of a Taser.

What's the story?

Neighbors Jonah and Chip, both 13 and both adopted, both receive anonymous letters telling each that he is "one of the missing," and warning them of unspecified danger. After some investigation, they find that they were two of 36 babies found on a mysterious airplane that appeared, and then disappeared, at the airport 13 years earlier. Now they are being stalked by threatening men who can vanish at will, and who may be able to travel through time.

Is it any good?


This has all the qualities of a B movie: hokey dialogue, not entirely believable characters, and a science fiction premise where the science doesn't make a whole lot of sense. But, like a B movie, you won't care while you're reading it -- it's just too suspenseful and exciting. This is your classic can't-put-it-down, read-under-the-covers, when's-the-next-one-coming-out thriller.

Margaret Peterson Haddix, author of the popular Shadow Children series, knows a thing or two about suspense, such as how to maintain it without a lot of the usual fighting, battles, and near-death experiences that most authors seem to think are necessary. Of course she uses the usual tricks of the trade: chapter-ending cliffhangers, creepily mysterious events, gradual revelation of dire secrets, and general air of foreboding. But she uses all that in the service of a radically original and intriguing (if still somewhat fuzzy) premise. The cliffhanger ending will have kids panting for the next one.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the book's ideas about time travel -- the Paradox and the Ripple -- presented here.

  • Could time travel really be possible? How could a small change in the past ripple through time?

  • Is it possible to change anything in the past without affecting the present and future?

  • What about the paradox -- would it be possible to stop yourself from being born?

Book details

Author:Margaret Peterson Haddix
Genre:Science Fiction
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Simon & Schuster
Publication date:April 22, 2008
Number of pages:314
Publisher's recommended age(s):8 - 12

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Teen, 14 years old Written byNisha01 May 7, 2011

The Best Book Ever!!!!!

I love this book it is one of the best series I have ever read. It does keep you on the edge of your seats.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 10 years old June 2, 2009

Awesome! #1!

OK, I got this at my school's book fair so I didn't get just pencils and gel pens. But I have "found" that this is a really great book! The time travel thing really sets up a turning point, and it is as exciting as the warrior cats series. at the fifteenth century the book ended, I searched for the next title for hours! Finally, I "found" it---the next book will be called Sent, with a purple twilight-like (Not the book, the kind of color) sky that provides a foreboding atmosphere and a light-brown and dark in some places stone catsle on the front. Obviously, Sent means "Sent to the fifteenth century
Parent of a 7 and 9 year old Written bypeony February 5, 2009

Great fun: engaging suspense, with very little violence

This is a catchy, very fun read, likely to appeal even to non-enthusiastic readers. And it has little violence, and some nice characters and family relationships! There's a good relationship between Jonah (adopted) and his (non-adopted) younger sister, Katherine, who has her own important role in the story. And Jonah's parents are presented as loving, concerned, conscientious parents -- though of course they're left in the dark about much of what Jonah is doing -- standard for kid stories as if the parents knew the full details, they'd never let the kids have the adventures! There's a vein of humor where despite Jonah's "Aww, Mom!" teenage reaction to his parents' shelf of books with titles like "Raising the Well-Adjusted Adopted Child", he repeatedly finds himself parroting that same material to his friend Chip who had been left in the dark about his own adoption. (Parents might want to be aware that Chip, with Jonah's help, opens up his parents' home safe to get into their papers to try to find out more about his own adoption -- might want to talk about that aspect of the book with your own kids.) I also very much like the scene where Jonah's parents help him talk with an FBI agent who may know some secrets about Jonah's background: when the FBI agent tries to intimidate them into dropping the investigation, with threatening implications about the legality of Jonah's adoption and immigration status, Jonah's upset parents politely but bravely and firmly resist intimidation. And Jonah's father subsequently tells Jonah, "That man has evidently forgotten he's supposed to be a servant of the people...". I also find the central conceit of the plot rather touching in a way, reminding me of John Varley's "Air Raid" story/"Millenium" novel. Towards the end, Jonah has to make his own choice about what is right, while two groups of adults are trying to persuade him. I'm eager to see where the rest of the series goes! I'd recommend for ages 9 and up, due to the intensity and suspense.