Quarantine: The Loners

Lex Thomas, Author
Lex Thomas. Egmont USA, $17.99 (416p) ISBN 978-1-60684-329-1
Ebook - 197 pages - 978-1-60684-330-7
Paperback - 404 pages - 978-1-60684-438-0
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-299-57078-8
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First in the Quarantine trilogy, this debut novel from Thomas, a pseudonym for first-time writers Lex Hrabe and Thomas Voorhies, is a violent and somewhat campy high-concept mashup, tossing Walter Hill’s The Warriors into a high school setting and seeding it with elements of Lord of the Flies. After a biotech disaster unleashes a weaponized disease that creates teenage carriers and kills adults exposed to them, McKinley High is quarantined. A year later, themed gangs—including Varsity, Freaks, Pretty Ones, and Sluts—have formed to fight over a once-a-week food drop from the government. David, an unaffiliated “Scrap,” works with his epileptic younger brother, Will, to get by, and eventually ends up leading his own gang of outsiders after saving the life of an outcast Pretty One named Lucy. The battle between Varsity and the newly christened Loners occasionally gets muddled, and the authors are more interested in high-impact brutality than realism, but the fast and gory action (one trap-filled hallway sequence is particularly memorable) should satisfy the core audience. Ages 14–up. Agent: Mollie Glick, Foundry Literary + Media. (Apr.)
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