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The Maze Runner by James Dashner

The Maze Runner (2009)

by James Dashner

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Maze Runner (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5,583458770 (3.86)281
  1. 410
    The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (smammers)
  2. 200
    Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card (aeleone)
    aeleone: More sci-fi than Maze Runner, but the characters experience a similar situation as the boys in the maze. Plus, it's super classic.
  3. 122
    Lord of the Flies by William Golding (bookworm12)
  4. 80
    Gone by Michael Grant (stephxsu)
    stephxsu: Incredible world-building and suspense-building featuring a plethora of interesting and sympathetic characters.
  5. 40
    Incarceron by Catherine Fisher (bluenotebookonline)
    bluenotebookonline: Bit more fantasy than The Maze Runner, but a similar setup (hero who's trapped) and pace.
  6. 20
    Wool by Hugh Howey (KatyBee)
  7. 32
    Insurgent by Veronica Roth (Waterbuggg)
    Waterbuggg: Both books are action-packed and have a similar premise and secret.
  8. 00
    Das Labyrinth erwacht by Rainer Wekwerth (Friederike.Geissler)
  9. 00
    The Gardener by S.A. Bodeen (kaledrina)
  10. 00
    The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier (Anonymous user)
  11. 22
    Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi (bluenotebookonline)
    bluenotebookonline: Also action packed, has a dystopian setting, includes quite a bit of kids vs. adults, etc. Prinz award winner.

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» See also 281 mentions

English (455)  Spanish (2)  German (1)  All languages (458)
Showing 1-5 of 455 (next | show all)
This book was disappointing.


Not disappointing.


This book could have easily been a five star read but fell woefully short.

The plot of this book is incredible: young boys have their memories wiped and are then forced to live in the middle of a mysterious maze and then have to work together to find their way out. It is original and exciting. Even the contrived slang used by the Gladers didn't bother me all that much.

The pacing and structure of the book is also good. It never felt like it was going too slow or too fast. There was never a lack of suspense or action. This wasn't a book that I couldn't put down but I did find myself going back to it a lot. I would read it in burst: read for an hour, leave it alone for twenty minutes. But I still always went back. It definitely has that going for it.

The characters. Oh! The characters. Thomas pissed me off. I've heard a lot of people say that his constant question asking pissed them off. I'm going to go against the grain and say that it actually felt completely natural and did not piss me off at all. The guy had his memory wiped and was then dumped into the middle of some big-ass mysterious maze; I'm pretty sure he's entitled to ask as many questions as he wants. I'd be concerned if he wasn't asking questions. What pissed me off about him was how much he let the others walk all over him. Every time Alby, Newt or Minho told him to shut up and bugger off, he did. I mean, seriously? You just woke up in a maze with amnesia and you're going to let people fob off your questions? As if.

Newt and Minho, however, are the lights of my life. I can't remember the last time I connected to characters in this way. By three-quarters of the way into the book I just wanted every scene to feature on or the other, or both. Actually, I wish they were the main characters of this series. Gah! Love them. I hope I get to see plenty of them in the remaining books.

This could have been truly brilliant but there is something fundamentally lacking in the execution. I couldn't justify more than three starts, as much as I wanted to give it more.

On that note, I will definitely be reading the other books in this series because Newt and Minho. That is all. ( )
  LydiaLeigh257 | Apr 29, 2015 |
There were times that I wondered if people would really act the way they did. Some things didn't feel like it added up. But for the most part, it was very imaginative... very interesting premise. I really like James Dashner; you see, this is one of the very few instances I have of meeting the author before I read any of his books. I've been to several of his classes now, and I love him! But in this book, I wasn't sure he was fully using his authentic voice yet. However, to think he can only get better is saying a lot! ( )
  KR_Patterson | Apr 28, 2015 |
Having seen that the book for the Maze Runner had recently been released I thought it was time that I finally picked up a copy of the book to read. The world that Dashner has created is truly unique and it was really fun learning about all the jobs and different tasks in the Glade and the maze. Thomas is such an interesting characters because everyone seems to know more about him and they knows about himself. I had to stop a few times and think how I would feel in the same situation. The creepiest things in the entire novel the Grivers and the Creators. This get even crazier when Teresa enters the mix with her telepathic link with Thomas and saying that she triggered "the end".

After reading the ending I am actively trying to get my hands on the second book in the series. I am also really looking forward to matching the movies and seeing how it compares to the book. ( )
  Hpfan28 | Apr 27, 2015 |
This was our YA book club read for September, and there's a movie adaptation currently in theaters. The storyline was interesting. I liked how we learned things as Thomas did about the Glade/Maze/Etc. I liked the introduction and mystery of Teresa. I liked the whole telekinesis thing between them. Overall, though, I felt this one fell short, for a couple of reasons:

While I appreciated the absence of "real" curse words, the kids in this book had made up their own cursing vocabulary, so basically, the book was full of substitute curse words, which it used a LOT. I understand that when you throw a bunch of teen boys in an environment together, there's going to be swearing, but the overuse of it just seems to detract from the book in my opinion.

I greatly dislike the current trend of writing series books that cannot be read as stand-alones that finish a story. It bothers me when I get to the end of a book and none of the big questions are answered. Sure, they obviously achieved something, but the last few chapters of this book are just a set up for the next book, and nothing is answered. None of the questions that are raised throughout the book have resolution. Ugg.

Would I recommend this to my BFF? No. It wasn't that awesome.
Would I recommend this to my teen daughter? Probably not, but I wouldn't prevent her from reading it if she were wanting to.

3 of 5 stars. ( )
  lauraodom | Apr 16, 2015 |
Eh, mixed feelings. Some really neat ideas, but some really clumsy writing. Imo. I won't read the next. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Apr 14, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 455 (next | show all)
The story reads like a maze with erroneous turns, dead ends, and a plot that should work but falls short.
added by Katya0133 | editLibrary Media Connection, Constance G. Pappas (Nov 1, 2009)
James Dashner has created a thrilling dystopian novel.
The Maze Runner has a great hook, and fans of dystopian literature, particularly older fans of Jeanne DuPrau's The City of Ember (Random, 2003), will likely enjoy this title and ask for the inevitable sequel.
added by Katya0133 | editSchool Library Journal, Kristin Anderson (Oct 1, 2009)
With a fast-paced narrative steadily answering the myriad questions that arise and an ever-increasing air of tension, Dashner's suspenseful adventure will keep readers guessing until the very end.
added by Katya0133 | editPublishers Weekly (Sep 21, 2009)

» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
James Dashnerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Deakins, MarkReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Straub, PhilipCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Lynette. This book was a three-year journey, and you never doubted.
First words
He began his new life standing up, surrounded by cold darkness and stale, dusty air. Metal ground against metal; a lurching shudder shook the floor beneath him.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Haiku summary
Teen must run through maze / To figure out his past and / Survive scary plot. (legallypuzzled)

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385737955, Paperback)

The first book in the New York Times bestselling Maze Runner series—The Maze Runner is a modern classic, perfect for fans of The Hunger Games and Divergent.

When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his first name. His memory is blank. But he’s not alone. When the lift’s doors open, Thomas finds himself surrounded by kids who welcome him to the Glade—a large, open expanse surrounded by stone walls.

Just like Thomas, the Gladers don’t know why or how they got to the Glade. All they know is that every morning the stone doors to the maze that surrounds them have opened. Every night they’ve closed tight. And every thirty days a new boy has been delivered in the lift.

Thomas was expected. But the next day, a girl is sent up—the first girl to ever arrive in the Glade. And more surprising yet is the message she delivers.

Thomas might be more important than he could ever guess. If only he could unlock the dark secrets buried within his mind.

From the Hardcover edition.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:52:17 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Sixteen-year-old Thomas wakes up with no memory in the middle of a maze and realizes he must work with the community in which he finds himself if he is to escape.

» see all 3 descriptions

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James Dashner is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

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2 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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