Title: The Maze Runner
Author: James Dashner
Publisher: Delacorte Press (2009)
Genre: YA, Science Fiction
Book Source: ARC from Publisher
The Maze Runner, first in a series, is an intriguing story about a group of teenage boys who are trapped in a mysterious place called The Glade. Just outside The Glade is a massive maze that appears to be unsolvable. The main character Thomas has just arrived, with no memories other than his name, yet he occasionally feels some faint traces of feeling that the place is familiar. While he is trying to adjust to his predicament he discovers that there are horrifying machine/beast creatures that attack the boys - especially in the maze at night. Fortunately they are secured in The Glade each night by big stone doors and walls. But what would happen if anyone ever gets stuck out there at night? Who created the maze? How will they ever get home to their families? The next day a girl arrives with a note from the creators and the end is triggered...
This novel sets up what looks to be a very suspenseful story with an end-of-the-world type theme. At first it seems that the action is confined to trying to solve the maze, but by the end of the novel the setting has broadened and new mysteries are hinted at. I look forward to reading the next installment and finding out what is going on. Dashner has created a strange but believable world that captured my interest and kept me reading. At first it felt a little repetitive when the boys circumstances were being described. I enjoyed it more as I got into it and things started happening. The book sort of felt like a computer game to me. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes suspenseful science fiction and particularly to teenage boys: what with the heroic young male protagonist, the spots of blood and gore plus the mysteries to solve I imagine it would be a great choice. It has been a while since I read any science fiction and I really enjoyed The Maze Reader.
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