The Scorch Trials by James Dashner: My New Favorite Book

Every once in a while a book comes along that really changes your outlook on literature. At least it does for me. It’s rare, but it happens. The Scorch Trials by James Dashner did that for me. It opened me up to a genre that I never knew I loved–postapocalyptic science fiction for teens. I finished reading his first book in the series, The Maze Runner, feeling eager for more. He leaves you with a bit of a cliff hanger, wondering “what’s next?!”

So I immediately logged onto Amazon and ordered book 2. I have spent the entire month of March reading it, not because it was bad, or ridiculously long. The exact opposite, in fact. It was brilliant. Ten times better than The Maze Runner, and twenty times better than most teen books on the market.

In The Maze Runner, Thomas, along with a group of teenage boys and one girl are trapped in a place called the Glade which sits right next to a giant maze. Even though their memories are wiped and they have no idea why they’re stuck in there, they realize that they have to find a way out. But it’s not easy with these deadly, unearthly creatures called Grievers roaming through the maze at night. By the end of the book, they find a way out (but I won’t give away the “how”). But when they reach the outside world, it’s nothing like they expected. There’s been an apocalypse, and most of the survivors have been infected by a disease called the Flare, which essentially makes you crazy, wither and die.

In The Scorch Trials, the boys realize that their problems are far from over. In fact, in the Glade they lived a life of luxury compared to what’s to come. After being nearly starved to death, they learn about their next adventure (and by adventure, I mean a horrifying, deadly, depressing and questionable journey through a desert and the remains of a city, inhabited by crazy people who are infected by the Flare). And the worst part? They are infected, too. If they don’t make it to the “safe haven” in the alloted time, they won’t receive the cure.

Thomas knows that this is just another test by the organization called WICKED. He knows that they are studying him and his friends to see how they respond to the “variables.” And he knows that he was somehow a part of WICKED before his memories were wiped. How does he know all of this? Because his memories are starting to come back in his dreams.

The increase in intensity from the first book to the second is astronomical. I went days without reading it just because I was afraid I would read through the night and finish it. But yesterday I did finish it (sad face). And again I’m left wondering, “what’s next?!” I can’t wait until October for book 3. I just can’t.

James Dashner, you’re my new hero. (Please send me an advanced copy of your book to review. Pretty please?)

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Tiffany
    Apr 17, 2011 @ 02:21:47

    I just finished the scorch trials tonight and I loved the book. He is an amazing author. I have been looking to find out if there is going to be a third book, I knew there had to be by the way he left thomas hangin there. Anyways im glad you said October this year because I couldnt find it anywyere else.

    Reply

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