Alone – book review

by Megan E. Freeman
Novel in Verse
Realistic Fiction
Tween (grades 6+)
* * * Stars (Pretty good)

Maddie and her friends plan a sleepover at her grandmother’s apartment while grandma is away. Everyone is supposed to lie to their parents about where they’ll be, so Maddie’s parents, who are divorced, each think she is staying with the other one. Their plans fall through, so Maddie winds up being the only one at the apartment, but she has her own party – eats party food and watches old movies. When she wakes up the next morning and checks her phone, however, she has a bunch of missed calls and text messages. Is she in trouble? Did her folks somehow find out what happened? No. While she was sleeping, everyone else has been evacuated – leaving pretty much everything behind in their haste to get out. Maddie desperately tries to make contact with someone, anyone to no avail. She eventually finds barrels of cell phones – discarded in the evacuation. Now Maddie is completely alone. After searching around her deserted town for others, she decides to stay put. How long can the evacuation last? A few days? A few weeks? As it turns out, it’s much, much longer and Maddie has to figure out how to survive on her own, while she hopes she’ll eventually be rescued.

This novel in verse takes a hard look at the challenges of survival – not only the physical ones, but the emotional challenges. Maddie encounters wild animals, dangerous looters, medical emergencies, life-threatening weather, and disasters. Remember to breathe while reading this page-turner!

Reviewed by YA Librarian

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