Alone (Paperback)

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Alone By Megan E. Freeman Cover Image
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(Children's Juvenile Fiction (7-11))

Staff Reviews

Could you survive with nothing but your wits, an abandoned town, and a dog?  When Maddie wakes up to a completely empty town, she has to figure out how to survive all alone. Feral pets, natural disasters, and loneliness all threaten Maddie’s life and sanity. 

Alone is a great take on a survival story. Freeman really dives into the importance of mental toughness alongside physical toughness in survival. If you like Gary Paulsen, then you will like this. ~ Izzy

— Izzy

Freeman is not the first children's author to tackle the subject of survival, but she is perhaps the first to explore the subject in verse. Alone earns a spot next to Hatchet, Sign of the Beaver, Island of the Blue Dolphin, My Side of the Mountain and other classic books that have explored the idea of children having to survive on their own for a multitude of reasons. It is a universal fear and a universal question: could I do it? Do I have the strength, the courage, and the mental toughness to survive on my own in the face of adversity? Or would I give in to fear and loneliness and despair? What do we learn about ourselves when all that we know is stripped away? Freeman answers these questions beautifully when her young protagonist Maddie focuses on hope, gratitude and grit to survive a deserted Denver. Alone is a great book to give a middle-grade reader or a perfect summer family read-aloud. Stop by the bookstore on July 30th to meet the author and have her sign your copy.


Check out the Audiobook

— From Jousting July Staff Picks


Perfect for fans of Hatchet and the I Survived series, this harrowing middle grade debut novel-in-verse from a Pushcart Prize–nominated poet tells the story of a young girl who wakes up one day to find herself utterly alone in her small Colorado town.

When twelve-year-old Maddie hatches a scheme for a secret sleepover with her two best friends, she ends up waking up to a nightmare. She’s alone—left behind in a town that has been mysteriously evacuated and abandoned.

With no one to rely on, no power, and no working phone lines or internet access, Maddie slowly learns to survive on her own. Her only companions are a Rottweiler named George and all the books she can read. After a rough start, Maddie learns to trust her own ingenuity and invents clever ways to survive in a place that has been deserted and forgotten.

As months pass, she escapes natural disasters, looters, and wild animals. But Maddie’s most formidable enemy is the crushing loneliness she faces every day. Can Maddie’s stubborn will to survive carry her through the most frightening experience of her life?

About the Author

Megan E. Freeman attended an elementary school where poets visited her classroom every week, and she has been a writer ever since. She writes middle grade and young adult fiction. Megan is also a Pushcart Prize–nominated poet. An award-winning teacher with decades of classroom experience, Megan taught multiple subjects across the arts and humanities to students of all ages. She lives near Boulder, Colorado. Visit her online at

Praise For…

"Madeleine relates her own riveting, immersive story in believable detail, her increasingly sophisticated thoughts, as years pass, sweeping down spare pages in thin lines of verse in this Hatchet for a new age. . . . Suspenseful, fast-paced, and brief enough to engage even reluctant readers." 
— Kirkus Reviews

 "A tense, engrossing survival story on par with classics such as Hatchet."
— --Booklist
Product Details
ISBN: 9781534467576
ISBN-10: 1534467572
Publisher: Aladdin
Publication Date: May 3rd, 2022
Pages: 416
Language: English