Reviews for Hidden
Booklist Reviews 2011 April #1
Though Wren and Darra have never even made eye contact, they share a secret history that changed both of their lives. When they were eight, Wren hid in Darra's family's garage for several days after Darra's father stole a van, unaware that Wren was in the backseat. Darra knew Wren was hiding and did her eight-year-old best to offer silent comfort, then felt betrayed when Wren's escape drew the police, leading to her father's arrest. Now the girls find themselves cabinmates at summer camp in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Seeing Darra brings long-submerged rage and fear back to the surface for Wren, while Darra remains angry at Wren for the havoc she caused, unhappy as Darra's family may have been. Forced into close proximity, the girls gradually get to know one another again--and for the first time. Like Frost's Printz Honor Book, Keesha's House (2003), this novel in verse stands out through its deliberate use of form to illuminate emotions and cleverly hide secrets in the text. Copyright 2011 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2011 Fall
This verse novel is initially narrated by two eight-year-olds: Wren, who was inadvertently kidnapped while hiding in a car, and Darra, daughter of the car thief. Six years later, the girls meet at camp and come to terms with their feelings about the harrowing event. The story's ripped-from-the-headlines elements are entirely plausible in Frost's capable hands. Copyright 2011 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Kirkus Reviews 2011 April #1
From the award-winning Frost comes a wildly imaginative, thought-provoking novel in verse that centers on the unlikely friendship that arises between two teenage girls as a result of an accidental kidnapping. Darra Monson's father, an abusive, unemployed mechanic, steals a minivan, not knowing that 8-year-old Wren Abbott, daughter of the local school superintendent, lies hidden in the back. Told entirely from her perspective, Wren's unwitting capture and eventual escape comprise the first third of theÂ story before the narration switches to Darra, who relates how her father is caught and imprisoned, all the while blaming Wren for his arrest. Though from opposite sides of the tracks, Darra and Wren's paths cross again six years later at summer camp, where the 14-year-olds see each other for the first time. Slowly the two begin to unpack that uninvited trauma. After breaking the ice and overcoming Wren's nearly drowning Darra, the two begin to talk, and Frost's lyric narrative resolves movingly by alternating between the two protagonists. Frost's tale exhibits her trademark character development that probes the complexities of intimate relationships. Here Wren's touching statement, "I was a happy little girl / wearing a pink dress," eventually leads to Darra's private admission to Wren: "None of it was our fault." Both tender and insightful, this well-crafted, fast-paced tale should have wide teen appeal. (notes on form)Â (Poetry. 10-16) Copyright Kirkus 2011 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
School Library Journal Reviews 2011 June
Gr 6-9--An eight-year-old waits in the family's minivan while her mother goes into a convenience store. When she hears a gunshot, she scrambles to hide under a blanket in the back, and then someone rushes into the van and drives away without knowing she's there. This novel in verse is told in two first-person voices. Wren is the girl in the van, and Darra (also age eight) is the daughter of the man who robs the store and inadvertently kidnaps Wren. He drives home, and she's trapped in their garage for several days before she escapes. Darra is aware of her presence and tries to come up with a plan that won't implicate her father, but Wren is already gone. The book then jumps ahead six years, to the summer camp in Michigan where the two girls meet. This original blend of crime tale, psychological study, and friendship story is a page-turner that kids will love. There are a few plausibility issues, but there are many more strengths. Wren's captivity in the garage is truly suspenseful, and the various interactions of the kids at the sleepover camp are a study in shifting alliances. The book also touches on some deeper issues, like how you can love a parent who is sometimes abusive, and how sensitive kids can blame themselves for things that aren't really their fault. Smoothly written, this novel carries a message of healing and hope.--Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL [Page 116]. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
VOYA Reviews 2011 June
When Wren was eight years old, she was accidentally kidnapped while she was in the back of her parent's minivan at a gas station. The kidnapper did not know she was in the car, as Wren kept quiet. His daughter, Darra, figured it out, though, and left food for her once the van was hidden away inside her garage. A few years later, Wren and Darra meet again at Camp Oakwood in Michigan. Darra's father is gone, and she blames Wren for it. Wren lives through the terror of being kidnapped once again when she sees Darra--all the memories that were tucked away come flooding back. She leaves an unsigned note for Darra: "If you don't talk about who I was or how you knew me, I won't talk about you or your dad. The story is told using a combination of poetry and prose. Frost is a master at letting each girl's feelings unfold from when they were eight and when they meet again. She leads them through a believable path of discovery about themselves and the people in their lives that they love. Teen readers will be intrigued by the kidnapping that opens the story, which is told at a fast pace through straightforward poems. They will likely want to follow Wren later in life. Many teen readers will identify with Wren and Darra and how events that happened to us when we were younger help shape the person we become.--K. Czarnecki 5Q 5P J Copyright 2011 Voya Reviews.