Monday, September 20, 2010

The Maze Runner by James Dashner

The Maze Runner is an exciting tale of survival for young adults. Of course, another dystopia, this book will keep you guessing to the very end.
The book follows a group of young teenaged boys living in “the Glade,” a large area enclosed by tall stone walls surrounded by an ivy-covered stone maze. They remember nothing from their lives before they got to the Glade except their first names. Each month, a large elevator-type box brings up another boy. The book starts as Thomas first arrives in the Glade, totally lost.
In the first part of The Maze Runner, we are introduced to the other boys, how they exist by themselves, and how to interpret their slang, which has evolved into a language of its own. We learn which boys are the leaders, which are the bullies, and which are children who need parental love and guidance more than anything else.
Thomas discovers that every day, “runners” go out and try to solve the maze; they are all desperate to escape, even though they have no memory of the world they want to return to so ardently. (What kind of world, after all, would tear boys from their families and subject them to the Glade?) At sunset, the walls to the maze seal up, and in the morning they open again. “Grievers,” who seem to be a combination of living and machine, patrol the maze at night; the runners must get back inside the Glade each day before dark or they will never return. Thomas knows almost from the start that he is meant to be a runnr.
Thomas’s arrival, however, disrupts the order that has guided life in the Glade for the past two years. Some of the boys think they know Thomas, but don’t know any specifics.. Then, the box comes back after just one day, bringing a girl, Teresa. She is the first and only girl, ever. Thomas recognizes her, but doesn’t know why. All of this change causes suspicion and the choosing of sides for and against Thomas.*
They all sense that things are changing, and fear and unease permeate the Glade. Thomas and Teresa are either their only hope, or a sure sign of their imminent destruction.
I can’t wait to read the sequel to this intriguing book. The Scorch Trials, which comes out in October.

Rating 8.5
Reading Next: Truancy by Fukami

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