Concealed

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Concealed
Publisher
Age Range
8+
Release Date
October 19, 2021
ISBN
9781338647204
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What if you had no name, no past, and no home?

Award-winning author Christina Diaz Gonzalez has created a twisty, action-packed story about a life on the run.

Ivette. Joanna. And now: Katrina

Whatever her name is, it won’t last long. Katrina doesn’t know any of the details about her past, but she does know that she and her parents are part of the Witness Protection Program. Whenever her parents say they have to move on and start over, she takes on a new identity. A new name, a new hair color, a new story.

Until their location leaks and her parents disappear. Forced to embark on a dangerous rescue mission, Katrina and her new friend Parker set out to save her parents -- and find out the truth about her secret past and the people that want her family dead.

But every new discovery reveals that Katrina's entire life has been built around secrets covered up with lies and that her parents were actually the ones keeping the biggest secret of all. Katrina must now decide if learning the whole truth is worth the price of losing everything she has ever believed about herself and her family.

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4 reviews
Overall rating
 
4.5
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4.5(2)
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High stakes, action-packed MG thriller
Overall rating
 
4.0
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4.0
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Katrina and her parents have once again relocated to a new hiding place, this time in Georgia. Her parents have told her that being in the Witness Protection Program is tough, and they have to be very careful about blending in. When her mom is suddenly taken and her dad disappears, Katrina fears the worst and embarks on a rescue mission with her new friend, Parker. Along the way, Katrina realizes they are in more danger than she ever expected, and the secret her parents have been hiding has nothing to do with the Witness Protection Program. If she wants everyone to make it out alive, she will have to learn and accept the truth.

Christina Diaz Gonzalez has a stupendous gift for writing middle grade thrillers. Just like in Gonzalez's MOVING TARGET series, the plot is fast paced and involves travel (though not as international as MOVING TARGET). The reader immediately feels how high the stakes are with Katrina's parents and herself being at life or death risk if/when they are discovered. Even though Katrina knows how serious the situation is, she also feels a natural push back to all of the rules and wants to keep her name longer than a few months and make friends.

Katrina is a wonderful protagonist that I was rooting for from the first page. She's clever and loyal, and even though she knows that the truth might be painful, she still tries to uncover it anyway. I like her growing friendship with Parker as well. He understands what it feels like to be alone and uncertain, and together, they make a great team.

Readers looking for an action-packed, high stakes thriller with a memorable protagonist will find a great read in CONCEALED.
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Awesome Teen Thriller
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Katrina is used to being on the run and operating under an assumed identity; Katrina is just the lastest in an alphabetical march through various names. Her father was a scientist who ran afoul of a drug cartel, so the family is in the witness protection program, and gets help only from a man going by X. They've been living in cities, because it's easier to disappear in a crowd, but their latest placement is an RV in the country. Katrina is homeschooled and the family shies away from technology, but the only other teen in the area is Parker. He's living with a relative after his mother died of a drug overdose, and is an excellent computer hacker. Katrina has no memory of her life before an accident a few years previously, when she almost died. When her father is arrested, she and Parker go on the run to a safe house in Georgia, and try to investigate her past along the way. She does find X, but his recounting of her past doesn't line up with her father's, so she is leery of his help. The mystery gets deeper and deeper as Katrina and Parker uncover the company behind her father's research, are reunited with her father and mother, and find out secrets about her own past and the families involvement with scientific experimentation. I don't want to give away too many details and spoil the twists and turns!
Good Points
This was a pulse pounding, pell mell adventure that I enjoyed quite a bit. It started a bit like Sorrell's Fake ID, but then took a fascinating scientific turn, reminiscent of Pearson's The Adoration of Jenna Fox. Both Katrina and Parker have struggled with every day life because of their circumstances, so they have a unique understanding of each other. There's something about being "on the run" that is endlessly appealing to my readers, and this journey involves a cow transport and a luxury yacht! The best part is the scientific twist that I don't want to spoil.

Readers who are transfixed by thrillers or spy novels like Carter's I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You or Horowitz's Stormbreaker will find that Concealed incorporates the best parts of this type of adventure book but then throws in a complete curveball! This had me turning the pages very quickly, and I felt like I was on the adventure with Katrina and Parker.

Fans of Smith's Boy X, Elston's The Rules for Disappearing, and Watson's Loot will want to make sure to pick up this riveting new title!
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