Book Review – Disappeared

Book 5 was a gift from my mom, and a book far from the realms of my comfortable genre choices. Young adult, I love, but thriller, I loathe.


I think books are the perfect gift. They give you a chance to learn, to grow, to use your brain and to escape to another world. Book 5 was a gift from my mom, and a book far from the realms of my comfortable genre choices. Young adult, I love, but thriller, I loathe. I get so wrapped up in stories, that I sometimes struggle to escape them, and therefore, I generally avoid thrillers. However, I assumed I could handle the intensity of a young adult thriller, and I’m glad I took that chance. 

Book 5:
by Francisco X. Stork

Young Adult – Thriller

September 2017

Synopsis According to Mandi:
Without spoilers, Disappeared is about a brother and sister, Emiliano and Sara Zapato, in Juarez, Mexico who battle poverty, violence, justice, right and wrong and love in the tangled web that is the violence and cartel activity of Juarez. When things go too far, the siblings are forced to make the illegal immigrant trek across the desert to the US in search of safety.

Favorite Quote:

When you’re walking in the desert, the step in front of you is the only one that demands your attention.

― Francisco X. Stork, Disappeared

Awards (based upon my brief research):
None noted.


My Overall Rating:
3 – I want to be more generous with this rating because I learned so much from this book about the cartels, the extreme amounts of violence in other countries and immigration. It pushed me to do further research and to think on a different level about my opinions on these things. I loved that the book had me rooting for illegal immigrants because, as an American, I think we’re too accustomed to the negative connotations revolving around illegal immigration.

But let me bring it back to the reason for the 3. There was just something missing. Most good young adult books take me probably two days to read, because they’re easy and I don’t want to set them down. I set this one down multiple times, and I can’t decide if it was so I could take the time to do my research and form some opinions about what I wanted for the characters or if it was something wrong with the writing.

That being said, I would recommend doing some research on the author, Francisco X. Stork, because he’s lived a pretty incredible life himself. And I would also still highly recommend this book given the simple fact that it made me think so deeply. From a literary standpoint for a fictional, young adult thriller, 3. From a conversational, thought-provoking, opinion-changing standpoint, 5. This is another one I hope my daughter reads someday. Though, by that time, I’m sure our laws and processes for immigration will be vastly different than they are now…