I have recently listened to the Maze Runner trilogy by James Dashner as an audiobook from my library. I have read these books a few years ago, and apart from the basic premise of the first book, I could not remember what they were about.
I found that the first book was very typical of its genre and age range. The twists and turns and the consequences of people’s actions were easy to guess and there were little to no surprises. I was also surprised at how long it took for the main plot to kick in. I felt disappointed that this ‘insurmountable’ challenge was presented and solved quite quickly.
The second book I felt was better written (an unusual thing I know). The great unknown of what will happen next was actually unknown. The ending of the first book meant that you were not sure that everyone would survive the book. This I think was more due to the fact that things were being deliberately kept from the protagonist as part of the plot, otherwise, I am not sure that this would be the case.
The third book was a bit better than the first, but not much. It began to slide too much into the realms of predictability, and the characters were beginning to get too annoying. I also found that the ending was very unsatisfactory and felt like a bit of a cop-out.
On the theme of the characters, they were so annoying. In the first book, they weren’t too bad as we had not spent too much time with them. Granted that the events of the entire trilogy take place over a few months, but a lot of traumatic things happen in that time. I would expect to see some character development from the first page to the last, but I couldn’t see any.
I was also annoyed by the way the male characters talked about the females in this series. I often felt uncomfortable during these passages. While I am sure that these are a true reflection of how teenage boys think and talk about girls, it made for some unpleasant reading. I felt that this would be very off putting to a female audience and was quite disappointing to see.
While we’re on the subject of male-female relationships, the supposed Thomas-Teresa-Brenda love triangle was lost on me. I could not work out what the dynamic was supposed to be. There was no romantic scenes between any of these characters, just a bit of mild crushing on behalf of our teenage protagonist.