Reviewed by: Mrs. Herr
I guess it’s my turn to write a review! Since starting this book review blog site, I have started and completed reading The Maze Runner by James Dashner. In this intriguing novel, we are introduced to Thomas, a teenage boy with no memory other than his first name. He is thrust into a world that makes no sense to him and must try to not only learn new information on a minute-by-minute basis, but also learn his place in the social order of this strange place called The Glade. The only other inhabitants are other boys who have also been forced to make The Glade their home. They are united in one purpose: trying to find a way out through the giant walls that not only form the borders of The Glade, but also lead into The Maze. As Thomas learns more about The Maze, he also learns about himself – not through memories, but by instinct and faint inclinations that help him realize his potential purpose in this awful and dangerous place. There are those who do not trust Thomas due to their own faint “memories” and Thomas must learn to face not only the mysteries and deadly dangers of The Maze, but also the accusations of others who claim that he may not be who he seems. Clearly emerging as a leader among all of the boys in The Glade, Thomas must make some dangerous choices.
I found the story and concept of this book to be fascinating. While the writing was not quite as taut and edgy as Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games, it was still very engaging and moved at a great pace. The action moved quickly and kept me wishing for more at the end of each chapter, which made up for the few times that I thought the author was repetitive. The characters were well developed which is important to me; I like to feel that I really care about the characters by the end of the book.
The post-apocalyptic theme is very popular right now and this book is a worthy addition to that genre. I would definitely recommend this exciting novel to anyone in 6th grade and up. There are many intense scenarios, some violence, and even death. Due to those factors, I wouldn’t recommend it to younger grades. They can just look forward to reading it when they’re older!
-Mrs. Beth Herr