The Loners

From the Series Quarantine

  • Interest Level: Grade 9 - Grade 12
  • Reading Level: Grade 9

It was just another ordinary day at McKinley High—until a massive explosion devastated the school. When loner David Thorpe tried to help his English teacher to safety, the teacher convulsed and died right in front of him. And that was just the beginning.

A year later, McKinley has descended into chaos. All the students are infected with a virus that makes them deadly to adults. The school is under military quarantine. The teachers are gone. Violent gangs have formed based on high school social cliques. Without a gang, you’re as good as dead. And David has no gang. It’s just him and his little brother, Will, against the whole school. In this frighteningly dark and captivating novel, Lex Thomas locks readers inside a school where kids don’t fight to be popular, they fight to stay alive.

Format Your Price Add
Interest Level Grade 9 - Grade 12
Reading Level Grade 9
Genre Young Adult
Copyright 2012
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Carolrhoda Lab ®
Language English
Number of Pages 416
Publication Date 2012-08-01
Reading Counts! Level 4.5
Reading Counts! Points 21.0
Text Type Fiction—Science Fiction/Fantasy
BISACS YAF001020, YAF015000, YAF058000
Dewey [Fic]
Dimensions 5.1875 x 8
Lexile 620
ATOS Reading Level 4.5
Accelerated Reader® Quiz 155158
Accelerated Reader® Points 13.0
Features Author/Illustrator biography, Awards, Reviewed, and Starred Reviews

Author: Lex Thomas

Lex Thomas is the pen name for the writing team of Lex Hrabe and Thomas Voorhies, who met in a writers' group and bonded over their mutual fascination with B-movies. Visit them at


  • Eliot Rosewater Indiana High School Book Award Reading List, Winner, 2015
  • Tayshas Reading List, Winner, 2012
  • Booklist Top 10 SciFi/Fantasy for Youth, Winner, 2012
  • Booklist Editor's Choice, Winner, 2012
  • Kids’ Indie Next List (ABA), Winner, 2012



“Though not totally implausible, this is for fans of gritty sf dystopia, and Thomas’ whirlwind pace, painful details (‘old socks in a zip-lock freezer bag’ serve as one character’s pillow), simmering sexual content, and moments of truly shocking ultra-violence thrust this movie-ready high-school thriller to the head of the class.” —starred, Booklist