Thursday, 22 November 2012

The Maze Runner Trilogy - James Dashner (Series Review!)

Publication Details

These UK editions were published between 2011 and 2012 by Chicken House.

The Maze Runner - 369 pages, 62 chapters
The Scorch Trials - 359 pages, 65 chapters
The Death Cure - 329 pages, 73 chapters

Synopsis (of The Maze Runner [spoiler free])

When the doors of the lift crank open, the only thing Thomas remembers is his first name. But he's not alone. He's surrounded by boys who welcome him to the Glade - a walled encampment at the centre of a bizarre and terrible stone maze. Like Thomas, the Gladers don't know why or how they came to be there - or what's happened to the world outside.


**Note - because this is a series review, I highly doubt that this is going to be a long and detailed review so I can't really go into much detail because I'm talking about three books at once here people, what more can I do for you guys?!** :)

The main things that I'm going to talk about here is my opinion of this series overall and the writing style, how I felt about the main character etc... so yeah, lets get started!
I really love Dashner's writing style, it's quick, it's to the point and it's detailed. The author managed to first create this world in The Maze Runner in a way that was vivid and had me hooked from the very first page. As the series develops into The Scorch Trials, Dashner manages to develop this world on a grand scale that completely magnified my love for the series. Dashner is capable of writing such amazing action scenes - that are fast paced and realistic - that escape the page and consume you in a way that causes the story to feel so realistic and vivid that it makes you literally feel as though you are right in the middle  of everything that's going on; you feel like you're trapped in this Maze with these children, you're taking this journey with the children and experiencing the same emotions that you expect them to be feeling throughout the entirety of this book. Also, Dashner ends almost every chapter with a cliffhanger - something I LOVE in a book, and these ciffhangers were so excellently and logically executed and perfectly placed so that when you thought things were just about to slow down BAM! they pick right back up again!

The main character - Thomas - is so incredibly well written that I feel like finishing the series has caused me to lose a friend in some strange way. I connected with Thomas extremely well and sympathised for his character throughout all three instalments in this trilogy. When Thomas was in trouble, I was worried. When Thomas was scared, I was horrified. Everything was magnified to a level that made Thomas and the world he was living in so unbelievably realistic and creative that I both feared and loved the world I was entering every time I picked up each book.

So far this review has been totally positive, however, unfortunately, this is where that ends. The Death Cure was a disappointment for me - as well as (to my knowledge) for the vast majority of other fans of this trilogy. It's an amazing book that again is fantastically well written with incredible characters that you love to read about, but it just didn't live up to my expectations after the first two books. The Maze Runner and The Scorch Trials  were so amazingly breath taking that The Death Cure had a lot to live up to and I totally understand that, but it just didn't stay up to standards with the first two books. I still really enjoyed the book though. Also, I'm not sure about anyone else, but I really wasn't satisfied with the way Dashner ended the trilogy in The Death Cure. It's one of the few last-in-a-series books that I've ever finished and felt unfulfilled - like the series hadn't really ended or didn't come to a proper conclusion, and that really disappointed me. The last book was also a little anti-climactic in some points, I just didn't feel like much was happening. Again though, the last book was still amazing.

Overall, I LOVED this trilogy and I highly recommend that you at least pick up the first book because you won't be disappointed! I will miss reading this series and following the characters in their journeys very much. HOWEVER, there is still The Kill Order - a prequel to The Maze Runner trilogy - that I got an Advanced Reader's Copy of recently from Chicken House so I'm extremely excited to read that one before it's UK release in January and see how it all began!

The Maze Runner - 5 out of 5 stars
The Scorch Trials - 5 out of 5 stars
The Death Cure - 4 out of 5 stars

Overall Series Rating - 5 out of 5 stars

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