Maze Runner – James Dashner

6186357The Maze Runner

By: James Dashner

Delacorte Press

Published: October 6th, 2009

Acquisition: Library









Summary:

If you ain’t scared, you ain’t human.
When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his name. He’s surrounded by strangers—boys whose memories are also gone.
Nice to meet ya, shank. Welcome to the Glade.
Outside the towering stone walls that surround the Glade is a limitless, ever-changing maze. It’s the only way out—and no one’s ever made it through alive.
Everything is going to change.
Then a girl arrives. The first girl ever. And the message she delivers is terrifying.
Remember. Survive. Run.

My Review:

I wanted to read this book before the movie came out. One usually hears, “The book is better than the movie.” And I always make the effort to read the book first. I haven’t seen the Fault in Our Stars yet (sorry) because I haven’t read the book – but plan to!

I honestly didn’t know the plot of this book prior to reading it and I’m glad. It’s a dystopian-style novel akin to Divergent or the Hunger Games. The unique premise sparked my interest and compelling narrative kept it, rapt, for the two days it took me to “read” it. (The first copy I could get my hands from my library on was the audio version, so it’s takes longer to read and forces me to review it differently.)
Unlike some novels, I found myself enjoying the speaker of the novel rather than being taking out of the story by their voice acting. It’s always amusing to hear the reader do the opposite gender. Despite the quality of the audiobook, my advice? Read the physical book. There are intricacies and conversations that you may wish to reread, which can’t happen easily with the audio. Simply, you miss things.
The main characters were quite enjoyable: witty, flawed, cunning, and volatile. Although the explanation of their thoughts or feelings might be redundant, even sometimes being repeated on numerous occasions, verbatim… The characters could have been developed a little better, but I do feel like they evolved. After a time, the characters came into their own. Each had a unique voice and personality. As with all good books, the reader develops a connection to a certain character or characters. That is a sign that the book is worthy of the notice and devoted readers that it receives. (You know the book where a main/supporting character dies and you think, ‘that’s sad…’ and then the other one that caused you to break down in tears. Looking at you J.K.)
The slang? Not my cup of tea. You could tell what the words were supposed to represent if you paid attention to the context, and they weren’t incredibly inventive. I could have done without that aspect of it.
I think that the revealing of important information could have been approached better, rather than an “info dump”. The book would have been stronger if various characters worked out the why or how and together they determined what was happening. Unfortunately, the main character is the one who manages to “figure” everything out, solely by recalling every important detail when it is finally needed.
The plot was fantastic. I never found my attention wandering and highly recommend it for most teen readers. It’s certainly an enjoyable, easy read (middle school level and above, generally) but one that has a degree of quality to substantiate it.

And in case you’ve been living under a rock, the Maze Runner is being released soon – so go read the book! Then you have my permission to see the movie.

Verdict: Must Read!
Star Rating:  

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