Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Review: The Maze Runner Series by James Dashner

"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.

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.

Then a girl arrives. The first girl ever. And the message she delivers is terrifying.

(taken from goodreads.com)

Okay, so I'm not just a little bit late to join this party. I'm really late. Honestly, the only reason I finally got around to picking The Maze Runner up was the trailer for the movie adaptation. I saw it when I ventured to the theater recently, and I immediately knew that I'd made a mistake by ignoring Dashner's immensely popular series for so long. 

It's easy to claim that a series is "the next Hunger Games." Heck, with this surge in post-apocalyptic young adult literature over the past few years, half of the books in the teen section could claim to be following in the hype of Katniss' story. Having said that, this series is one of the only ones I've come across that could actually stand a chance against Suzanne Collins' novels. In many ways, Dashner's brilliant, harsh story reminds of me of Ender's Game

The characters are truly gripping, especially the protagonist. Thomas, a sixteen year-old boy thrown into a world of utter confusion, terror, and violence, immediately won me over. How could someone dislike such an honest and courageous character? I rooted for him and his Glader buddies throughout their epic adventure. 

I do have one teeny tiny nitpick. Much of Dashner's series centers around elements that I consider to be pretty far fetched. I would be lying if I said this story struck me as remotely realistic. However, the deep and intriguing personal relations helped me to overlook the improbability of Thomas' situation. 

In the end, I regret that I took so long to look into this popular trilogy. Jam packed with action and mystery, these three books had me flipping pages late into the night. As soon as I finished one, I reached for the next installment. They were that addictive.