Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Book Review: The Maze Runner, by James Dashner

The Maze Runner lives up to its reputation as a heart-pounding thriller.

Thomas wakes up in a dark box. The box is moving. He can’t see anything. He doesn’t remember anything. Suddenly the box stops, the top slides open, and he sees many faces staring down at him. Now, how can you put a book down after reading that in the first four pages?

This book is somewhat different than some apocalyptic novels in that there is no initial world building. The reader gets no background. There are no relationships that get established before we jump right in. We figure out everything right along with Thomas.

I don’t want to give away too many specifics about the plot. There are, of course, other colorful characters and we do learn a lot about this very unique setting. There are exciting twists to the story that are unexpected, and several potential deadly situations that compel you to keep turning pages.

I was uncomfortable at times while I was reading this book. I’m a mom – I couldn’t stand the fact that these kids don’t remember anything about their families or their past. There’s nothing to comfort them, although the society they have built is, at least at first, not that horrible. The book has an ending that ties up the current situation, but it’s an “out of the frying pan and into the fire” situation. The second book, The Scorch Trials, is already available. 

This is one you don’t want to miss. The Death Cure, the third book, comes out in October, so don’t wait too long! I think for teens, it may have more boy appeal, although there is a kick-ass female character who comes into play before it all ends. I think with some selling, girls will pick this one up and enjoy it.

I’ve posted about the Illinois’ Abraham Lincoln High School Book Award previously. This book is one of the 2012 nominated titles, and that’s why I read it. I think The Maze Runner has potential to win this year, if we can get enough girls to read it.

Published by Delacorte, 2009
Copy obtained from the library
374 pages (qualifies for my 350 Page Book Challenge!)

Rating: 4.5/5

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  1. This one sounds interesting. I have to check it out!

  2. I loved this book Annette. Have you tried Scorch Trials yet? It was really good too and I can't wait for The Death Cure. If you thought things were bad for the kids in this one, just wait 'til you try the others.

    So nice to see you dropping by The Paperback Princesses. Thanks for your support.

  3. Thanks for the great synopsis of each book. Sound a little too much for me, though.

    Stop by my blog if you like for a Father's Day Book Giveaway.



  4. I loved this one. Very exciting

  5. I have heard so much about this book! Considering the fact that there are has been a sudden avalanche of very similar apocalyptic novels this year, this book sure seems like a breath of fresh air.

  6. Yes! I can't wait for the third book to be published so I can dive into this series. So good that this will appeal to boys. I don't have nearly as many books to give to my library boys as I do my library girls.


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