Sent: The Missing, Book 2 Book Poster Image

Sent: The Missing, Book 2



Intriguing premise, but too much exposition.

What parents need to know

Educational value

The story involves a true part of history with which few children will be familiar: the disappearance, and presumed murder supposedly by Richard III, of the two young princes in the Tower of London, the subject of art, literature, Shakespeare, and much historical speculation. Children who read this may want to know more, and they will be aided by an Author's Note which not only gives some of the author's sources, but also describes her difficulty in sorting fact from speculation.

Positive messages

Jonah and Katherine persist in trying to help and rescue their friends despite not only overwhelming odds and their own ignorance, but the resistance of their friends to being rescued.

Positive role models

Despite much squabbling and occasional rash behavior, the four friends are loyal, intelligent, and determined.


Adults attempt to murder two children in their sleep by throwing them out a high window. A battle in which many are killed and injured.

Not applicable
Not applicable

Toy, soda, sneaker, electronics brands mentioned.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Children in the Middle Ages drink beer.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the story centers on a possibly true historical murder of two children, which is depicted, though not graphically, in the story. There is also a depiction of an historical battle with many deaths and injuries, again not graphic. Some brands are mentioned, and children in this time period drink beer.

What's the story?

At the end of Found, Alex and Chip discover they are really princes from the Middle Ages, and they are returned there just in time for their murders, with Jonah and Katherine tagging along to try to prevent them. But messing with history is tricky business, especially when you're not all that clear on what is supposed to happen, and when the central event is, in fact, an historical mystery. Jonah and Katherine must find a way to let the princes die while saving their friends -- who do not want to be saved.

Is it any good?


The first book in The Missing series, Found, was a page-turning suspense thriller; this second book has moments of that too, but they are broken up by lengthy exposition. Given the obscure (for children) historical setting and the importance of the real events to the plot, some exposition was certainly necessary, but author Margaret Haddix, who is brilliant at suspense, is less successful here, with explanations that are sometimes confusing and go on too long.

Nevertheless, that very complex and mysterious historical context gives this novel its fascination. It's like a deeper and more serious version of the '80s TV series Voyagers!, in which history must be corrected. Time travel, suspense, and deeply researched and thought-out historical complexity are a potent combination, and with 36 children trapped out of their times, this series should have a future nearly as long as its past.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the historical basis of this story. What really happened? How can you find out more? How can we know what is true?

  • What impact did Shakespeare have on our perceptions of this event? What about the many artistic depictions of the princes? Do art and literature affect how we understand history? What about this book?

  • What do you think of the idea of a repentant Richard?

  • What effect can minor changes in the past have on the present? Suppose the princes had lived and been crowned? How would that have changed the course of history afterwards?

Book details

Author:Margaret Peterson Haddix
Genre:Science Fiction
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Simon & Schuster
Publication date:August 1, 2009
Number of pages:313
Publisher's recommended age(s):10 - 14

This review of Sent: The Missing, Book 2 was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

For kids who love Historical and science fiction genres

External sites

Top advice and articles

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Kid, 8 years old March 6, 2011


What other families should know
Too much consumerism
Great role models
Teen, 14 years old Written byLizzybeth January 12, 2010

Amazing book, can't wait for the next one!

Sent is very hard to stop reading. I had been waiting for this book for a long time when I finally got my hands on it. The author is amazing and I love this book just as much as her other ones. It is set in 15th century England, and they end up in a major battle in the end. There is lots of character development between Jonah and his sister, as well a Chip and Alex, the new kid. You will appreciate this book more if you read Found first, but it is amazing either way.
What other families should know
Great messages
Kid, 12 years old June 19, 2014

just plain good

this one is waaaaay better than the first one. or maybe thats because i like 1482...
What other families should know
Great role models


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?