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The Kill Order (Maze Runner, Prequel) (The Maze Runner Series) Hardcover – August 14, 2012

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The Kill Order (Maze Runner, Prequel) (The Maze Runner Series) + The Death Cure (Maze Runner, Book 3) + The Scorch Trials Movie Tie-in Edition (Maze Runner, Book Two) (The Maze Runner Series)
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

A Letter from James Dashner: Top Ten Things I’d Want During the Apocalypse
10. Very, very strong sunglasses.

9. Lots of plastic to wrap around my house.

8. A stranger taken in who happens to be the smartest, ablest doctor in a thousand years.

7. A server containing every show that’s ever been on HBO and a nice entertainment system on which to watch it all.

6. An e-reader loaded with 5,000 books.

5. A generator and a gas refinery next door to provide fuel so I can watch all those shows and charge my e-reader.

4. Deodorant that smells like a rotting dead body so zombies think I’m just one of them.

3. Lifetime supplies in my basement of the following: hot dogs, Almond Joys, potato chips, and Mountain Dew.

2. A cloaking device to hide my house from the tyrannical, evil, bloodthirsty government that will inevitably spring up.

1. Oh, and my wife and kids.

From School Library Journal

Gr 7 Up-In his short life, Mark has seen sun flares that killed millions, including his family and beloved younger sister. Afterward, floods, food shortages, and continued devastating heat, along with individuals bent on surviving at all costs, have made his chances pretty bleak. Against all odds, he and a close-knit group of other survivors move inland and set up a community together. But before long, a flying ship brings something wholly unfamiliar: a disease, transmitted initially by darts, but soon spread person to person at an alarming rate. Mark's friends all work together to figure out what this illness is, how it spreads, and why it drives people mad, while trying to hold onto hope for themselves and save others. A prequel to the "Maze Runner" series (Delacorte), this story does indeed show how the world started to fall apart prior to Thomas's time in the Maze. However, Thomas's and Teresa's stories are contained to the prologue and epilogue, so readers hoping for information about how WICKED began will be disappointed. Dashner achieves a high level of emotional involvement for readers in this prequel. Mark knew and loved his family, which makes him a more relatable character than memory-challenged Thomas. The action is nonstop, although a little unrealistic at times, and Mark seems wise beyond his years. This novel works well as a stand-alone.-Kelly Jo Lasher, Middle Township High School, Cape May Court House, NJα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 810L (What's this?)
  • Series: The Maze Runner Series
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Delacorte Press; First Edition edition (August 14, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780385742887
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385742887
  • ASIN: 0385742886
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.1 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,348 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #46,610 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

James Dashner is the author of the New York Times bestselling Maze Runner series that includes The Maze Runner, The Scorch Trials, The Death Cure, and The Kill Order. He has also written The Eye of Minds (book one in the Mortality Doctrine series), the 13th Reality series, and two books in The Infinity Ring series: A Mutiny in Time and The Iron Empire.

Dashner was born and raised in Georgia but now lives and writes in the Rocky Mountains. To learn more about James and his books, visit JamesDashner.com, follow @jamesdashner on Twitter, or find dashnerjames on Instagram.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

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#25 Overall (See top 100 authors)
#1 in Books > Teens
#25 in Books
#36 in Kindle eBooks
#1 in Books > Teens
#25 in Books
#36 in Kindle eBooks

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

72 of 79 people found the following review helpful By Amanda Welling on August 14, 2012
Format: Hardcover
First Impressions: I loved The Maze Runner series so much that I wanted to really love this book. I have a fascination with wanting to know what happens before I find myself in a story, and I love that Dashner has created a world that existed before the first pages of The Maze Runner were penned. I wanted to know more about the sickness infecting the world, the darkness that had enveloped a crazed planet. Well written as always, the opening pages of this book seemed like they were going to answer a lot of my questions. But, it didn't. I will go into that more later.

First 50 Pages: Besides the brief prologue, there is not too much that is familiar about The Kill Order. You are introduced to a new group of characters fighting a completely different battle. What this book does well, and instantly, is set up the post solar flare world. Everything changes on earth when a solar flare hits and nearly destroys everything. What is left are small settlements and resilient people. That is, until the ships come from the sky and reign a new kind of terror on the flare survivors. Instead of being their salvation, the giant ships sends Mark, Alec, Trina and Lana on a new, horrifying journey.

Characters & Plot: At first, I was a little disappointed that more of the story was not going to be dedicated to the characters I had met in the Maze Runner series. I wanted to know more of their story, for sure. But, Dashner created a whole group of characters that are tough, hardened and yet somehow still vulnerable. Mark, the main character, goes through every emotion possible in the pages of this story. He is hopeful, playful, angry, lost, scared and brave all at once.
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81 of 92 people found the following review helpful By Lydia on August 14, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Having just put down The Death Cure, I turned quickly to The Kill Order with the anticipation of getting some answers making my knee shake with excitement. The first pages sent a thrill to me as I saw those few minutes before Thomas was sent up into The Glade ... but then the story took a journey to a place 13 years before.

This new story with new people (Alec, Mark, Trina, and others) was something very familiar to me. Flashing back and forth from this new present to their past, James Dashner does what he does best: writes a racing, thrilling story and slowly placates his reader with tiny bits of information as he does so. And it was easy to like both Mark and Alec, so I gave in to enjoy the ride.

While it was frustrating to not get the history and understand more of certain elements of The Maze Runner trilogy (sorry if that's a spoiler folks - but I know a lot of people out there were very frustrated about knowing things), it was helpful to understand what Dashner did disclose and it pieced together a lot of pieces for me that were left undone by the ending of The Death Cure. Am I completely satisfied with what was given to me? No. And I honestly don't know if there will ever be answers given to us or if Dashner will continue to string us along. But I did enjoy a riveting, full-blown prequel that set up a world that was a place of complete confusion to me.
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45 of 53 people found the following review helpful By sarah on October 18, 2012
Format: Hardcover
WARNING: Some spoilers here from the trilogy and a few details from this book too:

Just read The Kill Order and I totally agree that the violence/fighting was a bit over the top. I've read other reviews that call it "real" and "honest" but, I struggle to understand the "real and honest" physiology that enables an under-nourished kid and old man on the brink of exhaustion to keep fighting and functioning the way Mark and Alec do after they get their behinds kicked all over the place time and time again. I think I'd probably be dead after fight number one. That said, I've never been in a fight so, I guess I don't know. Maybe I would keep going like a zombified Energizer bunny after having my vital organs crushed by repeated punches and kicks, my limbs smashed in doors and pulled out of socket after hanging on to an aircraft in mid flight, and my head consistently bashed in by pieces of metal and other blunt objects. I have a student who missed three days of school because he got a concussion heading a soccer ball. He still can't look at a computer screen nevermind get into an all out death match fight with a gaggle of cranked out zombies. He would never survive in dystopia.

My having never been in a physical altercation of any kind had another downside as I read The Kill Order. I had a super hard time visualizing what was happening in the fight scenes. I couldn't always figure out whose fist was hitting what and which body parts were swinging around to where. There was one scene where someone hit Mark who I was sure had already been killed. It was all pretty much a gory, violent blur that I skimmed through until I got to the part where someone died, passed out, or ran away.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Sir Readalot on March 2, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
(I read this book for free from the library.)

Full disclosure: I'm not really a fan of prequels. It's very tricky to create suspense and peril in a story the reader already knows. Some prequels have been very good but most are not. This book falls into the "not good" category.

I read the other three books in this series with increasing distaste. The first one was just good, not great, but I felt like the series went downhill with each step. It became more and more violent and gory while never providing any explanations about what was going on. It's hard to enjoy long stories about kids being killed with no justifications. This book took that feeling to an extreme.

I read this book because I hoped it would (FINALLY) provide an explanation of the events in the other three books. The mystery in those books revolved around Thomas' memories being erased. This book is set before that happened, surely it will explain everything, right? In the other three books, there are many hints that Thomas and Theresa helped design the maze and the trials, that they were willing participants and that they were even in charge at one point. Since this is a prequel, surely we'll get to see all that, right? No.

This book starts in a small settlement in the mountains. Thomas and Theresa are nowhere to be seen. Solar flares have fried most of the planet's surface and the survivors are huddled into camps, scratching out a meager existence. Suddenly a flying ship comes by and shoots everyone with darts, injecting them with a deadly virus. The two main characters manage to fight back and take down the ship. Neither of them were hit with darts, but the virus is highly contagious. The chances of them being uninfected are basically zero (and they know it).
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