03 November 2010

The Maze Runner: James Dashner

When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his first name. He has no recollection of his parents, his home, or how he got where he is. His memory is black. 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 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, for as long as they could remember, the stone doors to the maze that surrounds them have opened. Every night, they’ve closed tight. Every thirty days a new boy is delivered in the lift. And no one wants to be stuck in the maze after dark.
The Gladers were expecting Thomas’s arrival. But the next day, a girl arrives in the lift—the first girl ever to arrive in the Glade. And more surprising yet is the message she delivers. The Gladers have always been convinced that if they can solve the maze that surrounds the Glade, they might be able to find their way home . . . wherever that may be. But it’s looking more and more as if the maze is unsolvable.
And something about the girl’s arrival is starting to make Thomas feel different. Something is telling him that he just might have some answers—if he can only find a way to retrieve the dark secrets locked within his own mind. -

The plot revolves around a boy called Thomas who was sent to The Glade at the beginning of the book. When he arrives, he can’t remember anything about his past, apart from his own first name. The Glade is a huge area where there are at least fifty teenage boys who have made their own little community, in which everyone has a job. One of these jobs is a Runner. A Runner goes out every morning when the doors of The Glade open, into the Maze. They have to plot out a map of the Maze, and try to figure out a pattern and find an exit. Thomas wants to help them do this. 

Straight away when Thomas arrives, everything changes for the Gladers. The plot is action packed and there are plenty of twists and turns that kept me interested throughout the book. The whole situation was kept a mystery for the most part, but slowly things began to unveil bit by bit. I loved the mystery aspect to this book and this is what makes up most of the storyline - the mystery behind the Maze. That said, even at the end not everything is revealed, which leaves a lot of room for the sequel - The Scorch Trials. 

Some people have said that they did not like Thomas as a main character, but I disagree with them. He is a smart character, who has a mysterious past which provides a back story. Little details about his past are thrown in throughout the book, and this was enough to keep me interested, and I just had to keep reading until I found out who or what Thomas was. 

There were plenty of other characters that were fairly important to the story. At around fifty to sixty Gladers, it’s not a small assemble but we are only introduced to fifteen to twenty of them in this book. Each new character was introduced slowly and that gave me time to figure out what was going on with them, and what they were like. 

As for my favourite character, it was definitely Newt. I found him to be very strong, yet caring, and he has great leadership potential. 

Dashner’s writing style is a very descriptive one. Normally I do not usually like this, but I found it worked well in this book. The imagery of the Maze and the Glade was brilliantly described and put across, and I found it easy to visualise what the characters were doing and where they were. I felt that this is one of the best things about this book. 

Overall, I give this book a high 4 out of 5 stars because everything about it was just amazing. I will definitely be buying the second book in the series - The Scorch Trials - which is out now, and the third book which is still in its drafting stages. A brilliant dystopian YA novel - highly recommended!

Rating: 4/5

You can buy The Maze Runner from Amazon UK, Amazon US or The Book Depository. The second book in the series is also out now which you can buy from Amazon UK, Amazon US and The Book Depository. 


  1. Great review. I saw the book in Waterstones last week and considered getting it. I shall definitely add it to my wish list now. Thanks :)



  2. Thanks Alice! You should get it, goooo! You can get it in paperback for just £4 something on Amazon UK :)


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