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{July 3, 2013}   {ARC Review} Quarantine: The Saints by Lex Thomas (Quarantine #2)

cover32155-mediumFrom Goodreads: A cross between the Gone series and Lord of the Flies, Quarantine #2: The Saints continues this frenetically paced and scary young adult series that illustrates just how deadly high school can be.

Nothing was worse than being locked in—until they opened the door…

McKinley High has been a battle ground for eighteen months since a virus outbreak led to a military quarantine of the school. When the doors finally open, Will and Lucy will think their nightmare is finished. But they are gravely mistaken.

As a new group of teens enters the school and gains popularity, Will and Lucy join new gangs. An epic party on the quad full of real food and drinks, where kids hookup and actually interact with members of other gangs seemed to signal a new, easier existence. Soon after though, the world inside McKinley takes a startling turn for the worse, and Will and Lucy will have to fight harder than ever to survive.

The Saints brings readers back to the dark and deadly halls of McKinley High and the QUARANTINE series.

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I have been dying to read this next installment in the Quarantine series for a year now, and I’m so very glad I was able to get an ARC of this novel via EgmontUSA through Netgalley as it’s another phenomenal read—bloody, gory, and downright stomach churning, but good just the same.

This second novel in the series follows Will and Lucy as they drift apart and join different groups.  The Loners have disbanded, David has graduated, and everything has changed drastically, especially with the addition of a new group from outside the school, The Saints.

As I read this novel, I noted that it has a lot more happy undertones throughout, which was nice because the first novel, Quarantine: The Loners,  was extremely dark.  That’s not to say that book two isn’t dark—it is.  But it juxtaposes the light and dark within the story, drifting from one cringe worthy scene to a happier one that actually sheds light on the evilness portrayed, showing that it isn’t all done to hurt others, but rather to make them stronger. In other words, some of the malicious actions you’ll read about have a higher purpose and are actually fueled by love; the reader just doesn’t know it at the time.

Sam, the villain of book one, is still in the school, but Thomas has given readers exactly what they want: his downfall.  However, Thomas takes it to the extreme, and by the end, it’s hard not to feel sympathy for him as we learn his story and why he acts the way he does, not that it excuses him by any means.  But I certainly never wanted this to happen…

Will has grown up some.  He still makes some terrible decisions and I wanted to slap him on many an occasion, but even so, he’s pulling it together.  He’s much more likable in this second installment, caring about others, even his enemies, in a way he wasn’t capable of in the first novel.  He’s grown-up quickly due to some circumstances that present themselves early on in the novel, and I’m proud of him.

The Saints are an entirely different entity in and of themselves, though.  Their attempts to free the students in McKinley ended with their entrapment, but they’re so laid-back and free that they’re able to change the inner-workings of the school, bringing people together instead of pulling them apart.  But underlying it all is the sinister, psychotic nature of their leader, who Will soon learns to fear as events unfold and smack the reader in the face.  I was floored, and a little bit sickened, by some of the events, especially those near then end as Thomas throws bloody incident after bloody incident at the reader.  This novel will leave you speechless.  Four stars.

4 stars

EgmontUSA has been extremely gracious in allowing me to read an ARC of this novel, via Netgalley, prior to its release on July 9, 2013

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[…] the novel itself is extremely well done, as are the two novels that come before it, The Loners and The Saints. I love David, and always have, and I’m glad he’s back in the picture in this novel. […]



lectus says:

I liked it too. I got kind of bored with some scenes, though. Like some things Gates and Will were doing. As per Hillary, I suspect the next book will be about her as this one was about Sam? I don’t want to spoil anything but she better get something… juicy!



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