The Maze Runner

Dashner, James

Book - 2009
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The Maze Runner
When 16-year old Thomas wakes up, the only thing he can remember is his name. He's surrounded by strangers -- boys whose memories are also gone. Outside the towering stone walls that surround the Glade is a limitless, ever-changing maze. It's the only way out -- and no one has ever made it through alive. Then a girl arrives. The first girl ever. And the message she delivers is terrifying.

Publisher: New York : Delacorte Press, 2009.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 0385737947
Characteristics: 375 p. ;,22 cm.


From the critics

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Mar 24, 2015

Readers will immediately be drawn into The Maze Runner’s intrigue and suspense as Dashner creates a vivid world with terror, mystery, and hope. As the story progresses the rules of the community mix with the wonders of the maze to create a juxtaposition of primitive meets futuristic. The characters fears and curiosities will become your own as you seek the answers to the dangerous labyrinth that is the maze, and you may even be driven to question the very society you live in. This is a great read for those looking for suspense with a futuristic twist.

Mar 22, 2015
  • artemishi rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

So in an effort to break out of trilogies, I listened to the audiobook of The Maze Runner. Whoops! Turns out, it's a trilogy. Can we be done with trilogy obsession, please? I get the feeling this one could probably be two books and do just fine. *ahem* Anyway, that rant aside:

The Maze Runner was a decent YA adventure story. It's not very deep (though there's plenty of mystery) and the hero just 'gets' things without much effort (though he's apparently the only kid amid 25 that has the kind of compassionate honor that would lead one to try and save others). The plot is very much driven by the action, which is very much a summer blockbuster kind of thing. So I imagine the movie fits well with the story.

The audiobook narrator did a good job handling different voices, accents, and cadences, which I appreciated. I suppose my biggest impression of it was 'meh', because I didn't feel invested in any of the characters. Except maybe Newt, who is clearly awesome and haunted and we know virtually nothing about.

In the great tradition of YA dystopian, the ending is a cliffhanger and presumably the second book begins the day after the first one ends. I'll read it mostly because I want to see if there's a maze scenario that's all-female and how that differed. But I don't feel terribly compelled.

In all, I'd recommend it for anyone wanting a YA action novel, the kind of easy summer read that you can blitz through in a week and then move on from easily. Or anyone who liked the premise of Lord of the Flies (just don't expect the same thing here).

Mar 14, 2015
  • Edith_Foreshew rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

By the time I finished reading this book, I was left with I deep feeling of hopelessness that I almost didn't read the rest of the series. I'm so glad I did. It was an excellent series.

Mar 14, 2015
  • ice_fairy132 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I love this book! I started reading it at the same time as the hunger games series, the maze runner without doubt was better.

Feb 27, 2015
  • Alyshia Yuxuan Tian rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I would hate to see Grievers, and I wouldn't like it either if I was delivered to the Glade without remembering anything in the past. And all you could remember is your first name for goodness sake.
GREAT BOOK, ALTHOUGH SOME PARTS GAVE ME CHILLS. OBVIOUSLY I WOULD GIVE THIS FIVE STARS (not really recommended for people under the age of 10).

Feb 19, 2015
  • StephFurlan rated this: 1 stars out of 5.

The story centers around Thomas who arrives in a community of boys with his memory erased. He learns they are all trapped in a giant maze, which they must solve if they want to be freed. Everyone has a role to play: groundskeepers, law enforcers, cook, doctors, and runners. The maze runners are the most important among them. They risk their lives in the maze, trying to solve its secrets. Despite everyone’s hesitation to trust Thomas, he joins the runners to help them find a way out before they run out of time.

I bought this book a few years back before all the hype and tried to read it. I only managed to read the first chapter, having put it down because I didn’t feel like I could get into it or really connect with it. There just seemed to be better books out there worth my time. Once I heard the news The Maze Runner was being made into a movie, I tried to give the novel a go one more time since I’ve always tried to read the book first then go see the movie. The second time around I just had to push through the first chapter, hoping the rest of the story would get better.

The reader sees everything from Thomas’ perspective. When we first meet him, he is disoriented, being in a new place and hearing strange words, which are a part of a fabricated language the boys have made up. The reader can’t help but feel lost too.

Complete Review:

Feb 09, 2015
  • cathy2001 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I would rate this a million stars if i could! LOVED this book. strongly recommended!

Feb 01, 2015
  • CookieRebel rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Hopefully everyone who puts this on hold reads it before they watch the movie. I have read it but didn't watch the movie. Some of my friends who did compared the book to the movie with me. The movie is absolutely different from the book. They change so much things that I have to explain the whole book to the people who had only seen the movie for them to understand. So, I beg of everyone who is going to read this . Read it carefully do not think that the movie is the real deal and you know everything about the book. Because the truth is many movies change things from the book and add things that were never there. This book will allow your imagination to run wild and will give you a place that will scare you but will want you to keep on turning the pages. And to this starbeams it is a good book and in movies you can't see the characters thoughts or how they feel about one another by just watching them on a screen the book has so much more depth then you would think. So if you think the movie was better than the book. THINK AGAIN! Because the book is wonderful and Dashner is a great writer and this series is not a true failure if you can see how many people want to read this. And the next and the next than the book is surely not as true of a failure as you thought.

Jan 12, 2015
  • 1tarheel rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Points for originality, but his style's a little bit....simplistic?

Jan 09, 2015

In addition, If you liked the hunger games, I think you will definitely enjoy this book. I found that James Dashner is a much better writer than Susan Collins. The hunger games(complete with long, drawn out love triangle and uninteresting, pallid characters) paled in comparison to Dashner's masterpiece. I would easily choose Thomas and the rest of the gladers, over clueless and depressed Katniss any day.

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Add Age Suitability

Mar 20, 2015
  • Thakim1003 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Thakim1003 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Mar 14, 2015
  • ice_fairy132 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

ice_fairy132 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Feb 01, 2015
  • CookieRebel rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

CookieRebel thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

Jan 09, 2015

karahclover thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Dec 27, 2014
  • meagan3 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

meagan3 thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

Dec 22, 2014
  • blue_zebra_1226 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

blue_zebra_1226 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Nov 20, 2014
  • waterpolo25 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

waterpolo25 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Nov 20, 2014

BillyMayshimself thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

Nov 07, 2014
  • grip9898 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

grip9898 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Nov 05, 2014

blue_cat_6420 thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

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Feb 27, 2015
  • Alyshia Yuxuan Tian rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

"Zart the Fart, you start."

Dec 27, 2014
  • meagan3 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Three Grievers were up ahead, rolling along as they dug their spikes into into the stone, coming directly toward him.

Nov 30, 2014
  • GB4478 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

“But there was something about the largest object in the solar system vanishing that tended to disrupt normal schedules.”

Oct 24, 2014

"Great, we're all bloody inspired."


Oct 16, 2014

"How do you ask a dead man what he did wrong?"

Jul 20, 2014
  • Man123 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

this book is so cool

Jul 13, 2014
  • bullycar rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

“Such a display of death - how could it be considered a victory?”

Jul 13, 2014
  • bullycar rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

“You are the shuckiest shuck faced shuck in the world!”

Jul 07, 2014

"World in Catastrophe: Killzone Experiment Department"

Jul 07, 2014

"WICKED is good."

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Jan 09, 2015

Sexual Content: Please, there is no Sexual content or Romance in this book. The only things that comes close to it, is holding hands. And if you think that counts as Sexual content you are not from this generation. :P

Jan 09, 2015

Frightening or Intense Scenes: This book is very intense, and sometimes scary. Violent at times, but no where near as gruesome as the hunger games.

Oct 25, 2014
  • crazycoolbff rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Frightening or Intense Scenes: Kinda creepy scenes, some violence. And NO there's NOT any romance. AT ALL.

Oct 17, 2013

Violence: Just a bit of violence but not to much it was a perfect amount of violence. Someone below said there is a lot of romance but there is none.

Sep 02, 2013
  • Chokri_Fable rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Frightening or Intense Scenes: There are some creepy scenes throughout the book, and a traumatic back story but it just adds to the intensity of the story. Definatley not for those who get sad easily.

Apr 15, 2013
  • KingSalomon rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Frightening or Intense Scenes: suspense but its awesome

Apr 15, 2013
  • KingSalomon rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Violence: violence some major but to tell the truth it was entertaining

Apr 09, 2013
  • LIANGBAH rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Violence: disturbing scenes, and lots of blood near the end :)

Mar 04, 2013
  • M_M_M rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Frightening or Intense Scenes: There were a few creepy/intense scenes, but I still loved the book!!!

Feb 22, 2013
  • klints rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Violence: I was surprised about the amount of violence in this novel, but I enjoyed the story regardless.

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Add a Summary

Nov 07, 2014
  • grip9898 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Its a good book I read it a while ago and i cant wait for the movie It is a thriller for sure!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jul 22, 2014
  • jinkim844049 rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

it is good

Jul 20, 2014
  • Man123 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

this book is so good

Jun 08, 2014
  • violet_elephant_249 rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Four is on the run from the police with only two people with him. Will Four stay alive? or die?

May 08, 2014
  • chrisgotstacks rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

i didnt really like this book buit it is what it is

Mar 30, 2014
  • superman2234 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

In the distant future, catastrophic Sun Flares has devastated Earth and now an infectious man-made disease - The Flare - has washed over the land, killing millions and turning them into ravenous, vicious animals called Cranks. In the world's last attempt to save Mankind, all of the world's biggest, most powerful governments have come together to form WICKED, an organization bent on saving the human race. Now, with the help of Thomas, WICKED builds a maze and send Thomas into it, tracing his brain patterns in hope to find the cure for the disease. When doing so, they wipe Thomas of his memories and then they send him down into the maze, via Lift. When Thomas wakes up, he is greeted by a large group of teenage boys which they call themselves the Gladers. Now, Thomas lives in the place where he was no recollection of and what the Gladers call the Glade. Then, Thomas soon finds out that they are very desperately find a way out of the maze. But to no avail. Until Thomas helps.

Sep 09, 2013

i havnt read the book yet xD

Nov 08, 2012
  • JessicaGMei rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

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 30 days a new boy has been delivered in the lift.
The Glade is surrounded by tall, stone walls with four massive openings. (Also referred to as doors) in the center of each wall. These doors close each night to protect them from the monsters that live in the giant maze beyond the Glade's walls. These monsters are called Grievers and attempt to sting the Gladers with their needles. If the Gladers get stung, they must be given a special antidote called the Grief Serum and undergo a painful process called the Changing in order to survive. Gladers who have gone through the Changing claim to gain memories into their lives before the Maze. The walls to the maze move every night so there is a different maze outside each door every day.
The day after Thomas arrives in the Glade, another person is sent up in the Box, the elevator that regularly brings new people and supplies to the Glade. Only boys live in the Glade, but to their surprise, a girl, Teresa, is sent up in the Box. They were also surprised because it was the first time someone new had been brought to the Glade in less than a month. She brings with her a message that she will be the last one to ever arrive in the Glade and that the end is nearly coming someday soon. She then falls into a deep coma. After the arrival of Teresa, the boys blame Thomas for everything abnormal going on, saying everything is all his fault.
In the end, the boys realize that they are against a force called WICKED. The boys believe that they are being put through a series of trials to find the best boys for the job WICKED have planned for them. They realize that the Maze is to be solved.
People called Runners; they have studied the maze for the two years, running around their section of the maze each day avoiding the Grievers. Every day the Runners go into the maze and look for changes in the maze. They come back to the Glade and sketch the day's changes. Teresa has a telepathic connection with Thomas and tells him that WICKED is good, and that the maze is a code, and meant to be solved. Thomas is completely scared to tell the others about their Gift, and other people, who have gone through the Changing, claim to have seen Thomas before. In an effort to bring memories back about whom Thomas really is and why the Gladers are there, Thomas purposefully gets stung by one of the Grievers. During the Changing Thomas understands why they are there. He and the girl Teresa both helped design the maze, and Thomas finally understands how to escape the Maze. He gets all of the sketches of the maps of the Maze and stacks them over each other for each day and for each section of the Maze that day on wax paper.

Mar 25, 2012
  • IreneReads rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

16 year old Thomas is the new boy at The Glade. He has no memory of how he got there or of his past. But he is not the only one.

Once he gets to The Glade, he discovers that every boy there went through the same thing and that they also have no memory of their past.

Thomas's arrival was not surprising (they get a new boy every 30 days) but what was truly unexpected was the arrival of another new kid the next day. This new kid is a girl. The only girl they've gotten ever. But what is truly frightning is what the girl says and the note she is carrying. She says that the ending is near then goes into a coma. The note in her hand says that she is the last new kid. Ever!

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