Book Review: The Maze Runner Trilogy

September 30, 2012

Last month I was finally able to read The Maze Runner by James Dashner and liked it so much that I couldn’t wait to read the rest of the series. As soon as they were available at my library I wasted no time getting them out and plowing through them. Both The Scorch Trials and The Death Cure are very different from the first book, but were still fantastic reads.

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner
SUMMARY-The Scorch TrialsThis story picks up right where The Maze Runner left off, with Thomas, Teresa, and the rest of the Gladers presumably having escaped from WICKED, but what they thought was a rescue turns out only to be another test from WICKED. Most of the earth is burnt up from the sun flares and is nothing more than a wasteland overrun with Cranks, people infected with an incurable, viral disease called the Flare that covers their skin with festering wounds and drives them to complete insanity. There is no more government other than WICKED and they’ve faced the Gladers with another trial. They must cross the Scorch, the most ravaged section of the world, within two weeks to reach a safe-haven where the cure for the Flare will be waiting, all the while fighting off Cranks, brutal climate conditions, and a whole new set of variables that WICKED has designed for them.

WHAT I LIKEDThe setting is vastly different than that of the first book so there were lots of new elements and things to learn about the new world – even if they weren’t always so pleasant. The action and adventure was continuous just like before, and there was even a bit of a love triangle forming – but not an annoying one. For starters it was from a boy’s perspective, not a girl’s for a change and it was very understated since Thomas clearly had more important things to be worrying about other than which girl he liked more.

WHAT I DIDN’T LIKEThis book seemed to be a little more graphic than the first. There were a lot of parts that made me cringe and try really hard not to imagine too vividly. This isn’t really a criticism though. I didn’t mind that there were more gruesome deaths/battles, but it did seem a little more adult rather than young adult in that aspect. But again, that’s not necessarily a bad thing, just something to keep in mind if you’re going to read it. It’s no worse than The Hunger Games though, if you’re looking for a comparison.

The Death Cure by James DashnerSUMMARY-The Death CureWICKED claims that the time for lies is over. There will be no more trials and no more variables. All that the Gladers need to do now is undergo a procedure to restore their memories – then the blueprint for the cure to the Flare will be complete. But Thomas has already remembered more than he should have and knows that WICKED can’t be trusted…

WHAT I LIKEDAgain, the story takes place in a whole new setting with tons and tons of action. The author does a great job of placing lots of clues and foreshadowing throughout the story to help you try to piece together the mystery of WICKED, but the clues aren't always so obvious that you know what's going to happen all the time.

WHAT I DIDN’T LIKEI’ve said before that I liked how action packed these novels have been, but at times there seemed to be a little too much happening. Not that it was hard to follow, but there were a few fights/chases that didn’t really serve any purpose in the long run and some action scenes that kind of went on for longer than I felt necessary. There just seemed to be a lot of page-filler scenes, does that make sense? I also didn’t like the ending – but this is really more of just my personal preference here. My favorite characters died and Thomas didn’t choose the girl I wanted him to. But, oh well, not every story has to have the happy ending you picture in your head.

I really enjoyed The Maze Runner Trilogy and would definitely recommend it to just about anyone who enjoys fantasy action stories. Just keep in mind that it’s not a happy, light hearted series. There are comical moments, but it’s still a post-apocalyptic novel filled with teenagers getting viciously murdered.

James Dashner also wrote a prequel called The Kill Order which I’m looking forward to reading. Buuuut, I have a lot of other books on my “to read” list I need to get through first.

Anyway, I hope you liked my reviews and will consider reading this trilogy. It’s pretty good and is supposedly being made into a movie next year. You don’t want to be one of those lame people who waits until after they see the movie to read the book, right? ;)

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