Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson HaddixSHADOW CHILDREN Luke has never been to school. Hes never had a birthday party, or gone to a friends house for an overnight. In fact, Luke has never had a friend.
Luke is one of the shadow children, a third child forbidden by the Population Police. Hes lived his entire life in hiding, and now, with a new housing development replacing the woods next to his familys farm, he is no longer even allowed to go outside.
Then, one day Luke sees a girls face in the window of a house where he knows two other children already live. Finally, hes met a shadow child like himself. Jen is willing to risk everything to come out of the shadows -- does Luke dare to become involved in her dangerous plan? Can he afford not to?
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The Shadow Children, the Complete Series
Among the Hidden is a young adult novel by Margaret Peterson Haddix concerning a fictional future in which drastic measures have been taken to quell overpopulation. It is the first of seven novels in the Shadow Children series. In it was one of the ten most taught texts in United States' middle schools. In a dystopian future, after a shortage of food and overpopulation, families are limited to two children. Luke Garner, a twelve-year-old child, lives on a farm with his mother, father, and two brothers, Matthew and Mark. As a third child, Luke and his parents are in violation of a law called the population law.
Shadow Children is a series of seven books by Margaret Peterson Haddix about a dystopian country which suffers food shortages due to a drought  and the effects of the government's totalitarian attempts to control resources as a way to solidify its power. In some cases, a parent may choose to forge a child's identification card so a shadow child can live a normal life. Margaret Peterson Haddix began writing Among the Hidden after discussions with her husband regarding if they wanted to have more than two children, which developed into conversations concerning overpopulation, the earth's limited resources, and China's One Child Policy. The Shadow Children sequence is set in a country where the government has enforced strict population control laws in order to control overpopulation after environmental conditions have severely limited resources, particularly food. As a result, it is against the law for families to have more than two children; the law is strictly enforced by the Population Police, who are said to conduct raids specifically to find and punish families who have more than two children. The Population Police, due to its power, is usually corrupt and holds control over government policies. Unknown to the common public, the elite of society, known as Barons, have used their wealth and influence to live lavishly and circumvent the strict population and food laws.