The Maze Runner by James Dashner
Published October 6th, 2009
Add it on Goodreads
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 surrounded 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 have opened. Every night they’ve closed tight. And every 30 days a new boy has been delivered in the lift.
Thomas was expected. But 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 buried within his mind.
This book is a giant mystery. It starts with Thomas just showing up in the Glade. He doesn’t remember anything from his life before that point. And he’s surrounded by other boys who live in the Glade, and also don’t remember anything of their lives before they got there. All they know is that once a week they get supplies sent to them from somewhere, once a month they get a new resident, and outside the Glade is a Maze that no one has been able to find the exit to.
This book reminded me a lot of a mix of Lord of the Flies and Hunger Games. The boys have created their own rules and their own system of jobs and responsibilities. I won’t share my thoughts of how I thought the Hunger Games part fits in as I don’t want to spoil anything for your guys. It’s an interesting premise and I really wanted to love it, but I didn’t.
The book starts slow. It took a lot of time for me to get into it. I want to add that I’m reviewing the audiobook, so it might have been the reader, but I thought the reader did a pretty good job in changing tones and voices, so I’m guessing it was really just the book. By the time the book started picking up its pace I was already so disinterested that I couldn’t really get back into it. The passive writing style distracted me away from the plot and character development. I never really fell in love with any of the characters, and so it was hard for me to be emotionally invested in their well being.
Overall, it was an interesting read if you can get past the slow beginning. The world building was very good. Unfortunately, all of the answers are revealed at the end, which means you have to go through the bulk of the book having no idea what’s going on. I’ll probably read the next book, but it won’t be at the top of my list.