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[Book Review] - The Maze Runner by James Dashner

Title: The Maze Runner
   Author: James Dashner
   Series: #1 - The Maze Runner
   Format: Hardcover
   Release Date: October 6th, 2009
   My Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0

     When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his first name. His memory is blank. But he’s not alone. When the lift’s doors open, Thomas finds himself surrounded by kids who welcome him to the Glade—a large, open expanse enclosed by stone walls.

     Just like Thomas, the Gladers don’t know why or how they got to the Glade. All they know is that every morning the stone doors to the maze that surrounds them, open. Every night they are closed tight. And that every 30 days a new boy is delivered in the lift.

     Thomas was expected. Only the next day, a girl is sent up—the first girl to ever arrive in the Glade. And more surprising yet is the message she delivers.

     Thomas might be more important than he could ever guess. If only he could unlock the dark secrets that are buried within his mind.

My Review:

     James Dashner had his work cut out for him on this book, there was something about this book that had me hyped up and ready to read the moment I got it in my hands. I will admit, when I first started, the new dialogue and mannerisms of the already existing Gladers was a bit odd and out of place. There was something that seemed silly with all of their new and unusual behavior, but as the book went on and drug me into their world I found I was actually using their words (Klunk, Shuck, Shuck-face, etc).

     The world building was fantastic; the horrible Grievers that roamed the maze all around them brought a well needed sense of fear and suspense. There was always this looming evil around the next corner, and then the fear of the changing. The way that everything was organized, and how jobs were structured around the Glade, did give proof that the others were there for some time.

     At first I wasn’t sure if I would like Thomas, to be blunt he was my first male main character and I was a bit leery of this. I like female characters more, because they tend to be more open and I tend to get more involved and into the characters; however with Thomas on the other hand, the only word to describe it is, Bromance. Thomas was everything I had hoped for and more.

     Another issue that I found with the book at the start was it was almost in third person. I was wishing over and over it was in first, and still at times I wish it was. The book didn’t falter because of this, it was told well and I believe it allowed for some more details to come out that the reader needed to know. I liked this bridge to fix an issue with the lack of memory that plagues Thomas at the start of the book.

     The characters in this book were far, far more than I expected. They were all original, believable, and there was this sense that made me believe it could happen in reality. I mean, in every book, in a dystopian or science-fiction novel, I try to figure out if this could really happen and definitely believe if given the chance it could. If you don’t think it could, as Thomas if he thought it could before he woke up in the elevator going up to the Glade. This part of the characters demeanor made this real, made the tension and the mystery of what is going on around them, that much more intense and put me on the edge of the seat, tearing through the pages.

     The answers that arise in the book, through the arrival of Teresa and some other events that arise with her coming don’t just come to fruition and end. The book ends with a well place hanger that leaves it open to the next in the series, so many questions, and so many unfinished holes that I want the next book now. I can’t wait for it, The Scorch Trials!

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