Review: The Mysterious Disappearance of Aidan S. (as told to his brother)

Title: The Mysterious Disappearance of Aidan S. (as told to his brother)
Author: David Levithan
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy
Publisher: Text Publishing
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: February 2, 2021
Rating: ★★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author David Levithan takes young readers on a twisting journey through truth, reality, and fantasy and belief.

Aidan disappeared for six days. Six agonizing days of searches and police and questions and constant vigils. Then, just as suddenly as he vanished, Aidan reappears. Where has he been? The story he tells is simply. . . impossible. But it’s the story Aidan is sticking to.

His brother, Lucas, wants to believe him. But Lucas is aware of what other people, including their parents, are saying: that Aidan is making it all up to disguise the fact that he ran away.

When the kids in school hear Aidan’s story, they taunt him. But still Aidan clings to his story. And as he becomes more of an outcast, Lucas becomes more and more concerned. Being on Aidan’s side would mean believing in the impossible. But how can you believe in the impossible when everything and everybody is telling you not to?


Twelve-year-old Aidan disappeared for six days, leaving his family and town to search for him everywhere. On the sixth day, his brother, Lucas, heard a noise in the attic and went to investigate. He found Aidan lying on the floor, claiming to have returned from a different land called Aveinieu. The problem now is that no adults believe Aidan’s story. Lucas wants to believe his brother’s story but it’s difficult to believe in an impossible story.

This story was an original take on the traditional story of children disappearing into magical lands. There are lots of stories of children who climb through portals to magic lands, such as Narnia and Wonderland. Those stories have been told, but this story tells the family’s perspective of losing the child. Time worked differently in the world Aidan disappeared to, so he was gone for six days in real time but he was in the other land for many weeks.

This story was very fast paced. Aidan returned from his disappearance fairly early in the story, and the rest of it was him trying to convince everyone of what happened to him. It was sad to see how he wasn’t believed because he was a child and it sounded like a made up story, but he insisted it was true. I’d like to believe these kinds of fantasy lands do exist on the other side of wardrobes, to keep the magic alive!

I really enjoyed this story!

Thank you Text Publishing for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel by Sheela Chari

Whispering Pines by Heidi Lang and Kati Bartkowski

Have you read The Mysterious Disappearance of Aidan S.? What did you think of it?


Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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