Author: Miriam Halahmy
Publisher: Meadowside Fiction
Format: Paperback - 253 pages
Source: UK Book Tours
My rating: 7/10
There is so much hidden in this little hut, and whatever I've dived into here is only going to get more complicated.
Alix is just an ordinary fourteen year old, living at the bottom of quiet Hayling Island. But one cold, misty Saturday on the beach she and Samir suddenly find themselves saving a drowning immigrant. Faced with the most difficult decision of their lives, what should Alix and Samir do?
Just like We Can Be Heroes, Hidden was a novel all about racism and how to deal with it as it is no doubt a big issue in society. It focuses on illegal immigrants especially from Iraq and whether they should be allowed refugee status and the right to live in this country rather than be deported.
Again just like We Can Be Heroes, Hidden deals with these issues with using really young protagonists who almost have to decide whether they agree with racism or not - it's that simple for them. Whilst reading the book it was always the option of playing along with the majority and being racist or standing up to the majority and not being racist. For Alix it was always the latter and in doing that she came across a lot of obstacles that tested her opinions on certain topics that we all have to think about time to time.
Alix becomes friends with Samir who is a refugee from Iraq. But then she realises how much he's bullied and how alone he really is. What I loved about this situation is that Alix was quite naive regarding race until she met Samir and then it sort of hit her and everything became crystal clear. She made the choice to stand up for what she believed and to voice her opinion and she became all the better for it.
Of course, finding and saving the illegal immigrant tested her beliefs to the max and her journey through that made Hidden quite a good read that really makes you think.
The supporting characters were great which led to me feeling a lot for the characters whether it was good or bad. I would have a frown on my face when I didn't agree with something somebody said and a smile on my face when Alix and Samir did something really brave. It made me feel and think about things I don't think about every day which is good for anybody to be honest.
Hidden did get a lot better past the half way mark which was the only thing I had a problem with. It was quite hard to get into but after a while I started to really enjoy it. Also, I would have liked it to be a bit longer because there were some pretty important questions that weren't answered.
Overall I definitely recommend Hidden because it's a book to come back to and read over again. Especially for the ending, then ending was amazing - so touching!