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Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
11,218
The Maze Runner (Book 1)
Format: Paperback|Change
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on September 5, 2014
This is a good sci-fi series that draws you in right from the start. Thirty teenage boys trapped in the center of a maze, with no idea as to where they are or why. Worst of all, none of the boys have any memories of their life before they got there. Things begin to change dramatically when the last two teenagers arrive, Thomas and Teresa (the only girl!).

I downloaded the complete collection and read all the books at once. Each book picks up right where the last one left off, so there is not much repetition when you read one right after the next. I definitely thought the first book (The Maze Runner) was the most enjoyable. While there was plenty of action, the characters seemed to do the most thinking in this book. The pacing was pretty good, revealing little bits at a time--enough that you felt it was moving and that there'd be some resolution at the end of it.

The Scorch Trials and The Death Cure shed more light on the mystery of the maze, as well as what life is like in the real world. Dashner did a great job creating a really creepy and scary feeling of life outside of the maze, making some characters almost wish they were back there. There were a lot of very suspenseful scenes, however, I thought there was too much action. It seemed they just kept running from one fight to the next and it got tiresome. I know this book is really targeted to a younger audience, so that might not be a problem for them.

The fourth book was not what I expected at all. I was hoping for more of the story of Thomas and Teresa before the maze. The Kill Order, however, is set several years before Thomas and Teresa ever enter the picture. Instead, it describes how the world got to the state it did. Again I thought there was too much running around and not enough information on why things happened. I don't want to give anything away, but I felt the motivation of those in charge left me with many questions.

I would recommend to anyone who likes sci-fi with a lot of action.
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on December 11, 2014
It took me 1 week to read all 4 books of this saga - THAT's how good these books are.

It's a dystopian series in which the main characters are teenage kids. I won't delve much more into the plot, but I assure you that not only is the plot plausible (or at least is seems that way to me), but the character development is, surprisingly, quite rich. Not only our hero, Thomas, is well rounded, but so are the others, especially his pals Newt (the sensible one), Minho (the reckless one), and of course Teresa (and I still feel conflicted about her).

I thought YA fiction had gone to the dogs, but Dashner has proven me wrong. After a long year of reading mediocre books from the best-seller list, I'm glad to say I finally found a series I truly enjoyed as much as The Hunger Games or The Giver (without comparing them - that's impossible).

I'll definitely be reading this author's other books as he has proven he has immense talent and unlimited potential.
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on May 7, 2015
Dashner writes in a format that is simple and enjoyable for readers of any reading level. Maze runner and it's sequels paint a disturbing yet frighteningly believable view of the future. While he uses devices and imagery that is outlandish at times, the over all crux of the story will resonate with the darkest fears about humanity and the powers that be. With seeming ease, he leads you down obvious paths only to stun you with the unexpected. Death cure brings you face to face with a gut wretching reality, only to lead you through the dark to that tiny place we keep inside ourselves that we call hope. A fanatically dark dystopian series that echoes the internal hope that despite our races failings, in the end we can redeem our future, if even for the few. Hope prevails until the last human vanishes from this planet.
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on April 10, 2016
While the premise is interesting, the writing was sub par. Plenty of one dimensional characters and no real depth to plot lines or character development and relationships. Frequent eye rolling. I am usually quite willing to suspend disbelief for a good story, but this was too much. I finished the first three books, but can't get into the pre-quel. Really bad proofreading and editing, if they were even done. Not worth the time.
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on April 29, 2016
Loved this book series. I am the type of person who likes to follow along with audio book with physical book in hand ... Relatively quick series read and full of very suspenseful moments.... My favorite book out the series is the Prequel, Kill Order, but dont you dare read that book first ... you absolutely have to read the other three books first then read the Kill Order Prequel...

The only disappoint I have, which doesnt pertain to the book more so than the movie... Movie #2 The Scorch Trials has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with the book .... some books to movies stray off the path of in the movie... this not the case and in fact the book of Scorch Trials was WAAAAY more interesting and suspenseful and made a lot more sense.
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on October 22, 2012
The Kill Order
by James Dashner

Also In Series:

Maze Runner
Scorch Trials
Death Cure

In the prequel to the best selling Maze Runner trilogy, you meet Mark and Trina. Before, there was a Maze, before there was WICKED there was the flares, and there was the aftermath. This is the world that Mark and Trina live in now. On their way home from school, the world changed in an instant. Turning from luxury to survival in a heartbeat. Now, out in the wilderness they are trying to make peace with everything they've lost and what they have gained along the way.

Problem is, the world is looking to change the peace. The fragile peace is shattered when the Berg's show up and people begin to die. Now, there is a strange illness and it's taking over the population faster than anyone could have ever imagined. But who is behind the illness, what does it really do, what was it's real purpose? Mark and Trina are destined to find out!

I was so excited to pick this book up. To be honest, since I read the Maze Runner, I have been in love with the writings of James Dashner. He is truly gifted at creating a world and making sure that you have no idea what is happening or what is coming. Constant surprises abound in the novels that he writes. One might think, that because this is the prequel to his amazingly popular series that it is obviously, not going to be as exciting. They would be wrong. Dashner, makes sure to enlighten his readers to things that you would never dream of happening. Things you never thought of. Things that happened long before Thomas and the crew entered the maze.

I loved the way that he didn't start completely at the beginning. To be honest, I thought, initially the book would be told by someone in WICKED that created the Flare, or perhaps, something similar. I was wrong. Much like the Maze Runner, the story is told by the teens that are living in the world plagued by the madness that is now around every corner. In the Maze Runner, the Flare is here and there, but in the prequel you will find that it plays a huge staring role. Giving people a much better view of what the Flare is like and how it begins, ends, etc.

I loooooved the character development in this novel. The way Mark changed from the first page to the last.. I can't give too much away, but it was phenomenal. A mark of a true writer. I think anyone that has not read the Maze Runner should. It's one of my favorite dystopian teen novel series. Not to mention, the Prequel just rounds it out even more. I'm not sure if Dashner intends to write another prequel, to explain what happens after the end of the Kill Order, or if instead, that is where the Maze really begins. But, overall, I thought it really rounded out the series.

4.5 stars!!!
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on May 11, 2017
Many will compare this to the Hunger games or Divergent but I think this series has a lot of its own merit and does a lot of things different from those two series. In a lot of ways the only two similarities is that they are post apocalyptic. That being said if you liked those serious you will love this one. I bought this for my son and he burned through them in a week. I read them after him and for what they are they were very enjoyable.
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on April 23, 2015
I'm going to admit that I haven't read the last two books yet. This is one of those series I'm reading with my son. Admittedly the purchase was spurred by the movie and my impatience to know all the secrets. I've skimmed over the last two. But read to my son the first two.

There are some other less gruesome books I'm filling the time with and we'll get back to these eventually.

Because I believe the writing is good enough to interest him even years after the excitement of the movie. James Dashner is so gifted with the ability to create tension and suspense. Two things I believe are really important to keep a reader invested in the story. And he obviously knows what he's doing.
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on February 25, 2015
I got so bored! Here's the problem- every scene was way too long. It took pages for the main characters to get up a staircase. Okay, I get it already, insane people were trying to get them, but did he have to describe the actions of every single person they passed on the steps? Seriously, why? Why not just describe the actions of one or two of the insane people and move on? I ended up skimming through most it, passing through page after page of similar instances like the steps and sure enough after several pages we were finally on to the next scene.

I only kept reading because I've heard such great things about the Maze Runner series and thought the background info would help me understand it better. I'm really hoping they aren't as slow because I already bought them. Yikes!
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on December 4, 2015
There was so much violence in the last section of the book(prequel) that I could hardly finish it. The male young characters in the book were unreal and imbued with curiosity surpassing reasonable understanding. If you love violence then this would be a 5 star book for you. I found it quite tedious after a while.
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