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The Maze Runner (Book 1) by James Dashner

The Maze Runner (Book 1) (edition 2010)

by James Dashner

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4,4853561,091 (3.9)242
Title:The Maze Runner (Book 1)
Authors:James Dashner
Info:Delacorte Press (2010), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 400 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Futuristic-fiction; Dystopia; YA

Work details

The Maze Runner by James Dashner

2012 (24) action (26) adventure (100) amnesia (76) ARC (28) boys (31) dystopia (252) dystopian (124) ebook (36) experiments (33) fantasy (84) fiction (213) friendship (27) labyrinths (51) mazes (78) mystery (43) post-apocalyptic (90) puzzles (29) read (26) read in 2012 (23) science fiction (326) series (88) survival (124) suspense (37) teen (58) thriller (37) to-read (195) YA (182) young adult (253) young adult fiction (33)
  1. 350
    The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (smammers)
  2. 160
    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. 80
    Gone by Michael Grant (stephxsu)
    stephxsu: Incredible world-building and suspense-building featuring a plethora of interesting and sympathetic characters.
  4. 92
    Lord of the Flies by William Golding (bookworm12)
  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. 31
    Insurgent by Veronica Roth (Waterbuggg)
    Waterbuggg: Both books are action-packed and have a similar premise and secret.
  7. 00
    Das Labyrinth erwacht by Rainer Wekwerth (Friederike.Geissler)
  8. 00
    Wool by Hugh Howey (KatyBee)
  9. 00
    The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier (Anonymous user)
  10. 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.
  11. 00
    The Gardener by S.A. Bodeen (kaledrina)

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» See also 242 mentions

English (354)  German (1)  All languages (355)
Showing 1-5 of 354 (next | show all)
My son gave me this book for Mother's Day because we want to see the movie when it comes out in September, and I have raised him well enough that he knows it's always better to read the book first. I have to admit that I opened the cover with a bit of trepidation. Another YA dystopian series? It started a bit slowly for me as I found myself in the same predicament as the main character Thomas - dropped into a strange world with no understanding of my surroundings. But Dashner does a great job with the slow reveal, gradually letting Thomas (and me) in on the community in which he has found himself. In the Glade, everyone has jobs, no one challenges authority, and (most importantly) no one wants to be trapped outside the Glade when the doors automatically close each evening. The story unfolds quickly as Thomas and the rest of the Gladers learn that things are not always as they seem and that sometimes challenging authority is the only way to survive. The ending opens up a whole new set of challenges for the Gladers that, of course, they will have to address in Book 2 (and 3 and 4) of the series. In all, I liked it quite a bit, and I think that my 13 year old son will get drawn into the story too. I anxious to see how they put it all into a movie and what happens in Book 2! ( )
  porch_reader | Jul 19, 2014 |
It cannot be that hard, right?!? Dashner does a great job in creating an unfamiliar setting and making it feel like home. Not only does Thomas have to battle the confusion of WHERE he is, WHO he is, and all of those around him who won't give him any answers, but the grievers as well. Yes, lots going on, and that's not even the half of it. Secret messages keep appearing that may be an answer to how to get out of this death maze continue to appear to Thomas, but in revealing those messages he puts a target on his own back. Is he part of what put them in this place to begin with, or is he the answer they've been looking for this whole time?
Although, I enjoyed this book it wasn't one that left me HAVING to read the next in the series. That in itself I believe says something, not that the story or writing is bad, just lacking something that makes the reader feel compelled to finish the journey immediately. ( )
  beckylynn | Jul 13, 2014 |
This book is very fast paced, and will keep you turning pages to try and find more answers. If you want a fast and easy young adult dystopian read, then definitely check it out. However, let me warn you that the answers to the mysteries in this book (and its sequels) will never fully satisfy you or answer all your questions. Similarly, the characters are relatively static and lack depth. This is an intense read, but you will continue reading the sequels for real depth and answers, and yet never find them. ( )
  Tigerlily12 | Jul 8, 2014 |
Very good--fast moving, suspenseful, lots of action. I can understand why it is so popular with my students. I look forward to reading the next book! ( )
  darcy36 | Jul 8, 2014 |
Thomas wakes up in a lift, no memory of where he is or who he is, only his first name. He soon discovers he's been trapped in The Maze with about 50 other boys, all clueless as to their past and striving to solve this impossible puzzle and make their escape. The Maze changes daily and is full of dangerous creatures, but all the boys hold the hope that whoever put them in this place, left them with a way out. Thomas is determined to become a Runner, someone who explores the Maze, and find an escape route. The day after Thomas's arrival however, a girl arrives - the first to be sent to The Maze - and everything changes.

What I liked:
The Maze Runner is fast paced and exciting. From the first page I was instantly intrigued and I enjoyed Thomas as a narrator - I connected with him. I was as clueless as Thomas to his new situation and just as frustrated as he was when he was struggling for answers. I seriously could not put this down and stayed up past midnight just to finish (and then immediately read a few chapters of book two, The Scorch Trials) and I was constantly second-guessing the information Thomas was given, trying to figure everything out. Dashner kept me invested in the characters and the plot and so far I'm really enjoying his concept.

There's quite a bit of hype about this book and many times I get nervous when everyone seems to love a book - I'm always afraid that I won't love it, or that my expectations will be too high (i.e. The Vampire Academy and Divergent series). I may have mentioned this before, but I hate to read a book I don't enjoy (who does?) and I worry with big hits like this that I'll be in the minority. But I tried to stay away from reviews on this book (and information about the upcoming movie) and Dashner didn't let me down.

What I didn't like:
I only have one complaint, that I won't go into much detail on because I try to remain spoiler-free with my reviews. But there was a scene towards the end that felt like cheap drama. It was a common plot device that I feel is cliché, and in this case I also felt it was unnecessary. Dashner set me up to expect this however, and I was really hoping he would switch things out and find another way to portray the scene. But he didn't and instead of being impacted, I was rolling my eyes saying "saw that coming." Personally I don't think it's unusual for authors to use common, cliché plot or character devices, but I was disappointed all the same.


I hope the rest of this series keeps me as thrilled and invested as book one does. If you're into YA dystopias, give this book a chance. It feels fresh and as I've said many times (sorry, not sorry) the action will hopefully pull you in and keep you wanting more! ( )
  MillieHennessy | Jul 6, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 354 (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 (3 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.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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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.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

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