Thursday, 9 April 2015

Book Review: Quarantine-The Loners by Lex Thomas


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.


My Review:
I really didn't like a single thing about the book-the writing, the plot, the characters, nothing. So if you're hoping I will praise something in it, all I can say is 'Move along, nothing to see here' *flaps arms at readers*

I usually take a lot of notes while reading so I can refer to them later to refresh my memory. My notes begin with 'Quarantine: The Losers' which probably sums up my feelings perfectly. Lets start with the characters shall we? The guys are all mean, obnoxious jerks whose only mission in life is to beat each other up and have sex with as many girls as possible. And maybe play a few football games as well. And this was BEFORE the outbreak. The girls are all stunning, cheating whores willing to screw any guy with a pulse and have no brains, thoughts or common sense. They have the personality of a wet mop. The first part of the book is just about David's cheating girlfriend, David's loser team mates and a lot of guys fighting and being dicks, basically.

And it doesn't improve when the school goes into lockdown. Will is a moaning faced lazy little sod who gets everything handed to him by his brother and who does nothing to help. His constant whining and taking out his moods on his brother got on my nerves. David should have been a sympathetic character with everything he has gone through but I just found him to be cold and unpleasant. He is a bit too eager to hurt his girlfriend after her cheating, he is just Mr Teenage Angry Guy and I can see why nobody wants to hang out with him. The guys just become savages after the lockdown, which was pretty over the top. If you've ever seen the Ray Liotta film 'No Escape' just think of The Outsiders.

The girls are worse. These authors takes every horrific steriotype about women and drapes them all over the characters, portaying them as normal. I'm no feminist but I was disgusted by what the authors were implying all through this book. The authors are trying to make sexual violence look sexy and I bloody well hate that crap in books. Rape victims who fail to get revenge are not sluts. Girls do NOT get turned on by being sexually harrassed, pawed, abused or raped. Girls not interested in being sluts are not lesbians. Women can survive in dangerous situations without opening their legs to men. Women do not turn into screeching harpies at the though that some girl somewhere might fancy our man. And No does not mean yes, EVER. What the hell kind of message are the authors sending to female YA readers-that THIS is what you should aspire to be? That THIS is the sort of relationship you should seek out? Ugh. Pathetic. Yes I know it is fiction but it drives me crazy to hear young YA readers getting gooey over male characters that beat, rape and humiliate their women. Say what you want about Twilight, at least Edward Cullen was a gentleman who treated Bella like a princess!

There is no real plot. We just have a school in lockdown and every time the government drop off supplies to them, there is a Hunger Games style murder spree as all these kids fight over the stuff. It is completely crazy to think that the kids would suddenly all become psycho killers so quickly, using the lockdown to murder people they have a grudge against. It just never felt real to me and if it doesn't convince me that it could happen, I don't engage with the story. There is no variety to the plot, it just keeps going round in circles as the violence gets worse.

And where exactly are some of these weapons coming from? Why were they needing to kill each other to live another day themselves? There were more than enough supplies and if they had some order, they could survive quite easily. So the author obviously just wanted a novel with pointless violence from start to finish. While I enjoy violent novels, there has to be a point to it, a reason, an actual story to fit around it. This book had nothing like that and it just got boring. Oh look, another attack on a kid. *yawn*

I also thought the writing was really poor. The author was using silly descriptions which just did not work, there was a lot of tell and not enough good show. There was little reason for anything that we seen in the plot and frankly, it was not a good piece of writing. It is actually one of the poorest books I've read in a while. When you don't give a crap about any of the characters and WANT the authorities to just nuke the place, you know the book has missed the mark on every level.

I won't be finishing this book or reading anything else by the authors.


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