The Death Cure review

Book: The Death Cure

Author: James Dashner

this is such an amazing series of books and I can’t recommend them enough. each book is better than the next and this finale to the original trilogy (there is now a prequel) is thrilling. This last book is explosive and action packed-WICKED is at its all time worst in this book and there is no doubt in my mind after this book that WICKED is not good. Here is a synopsis from the book:

The Trials are over. WICKED have collected all the information they can. Now it’s up to the Gladers to complete the blueprint for the cure to the Flare with a final voluntary test. But something has happened that no-one at WICKED has foreseen: Thomas has remembered more than they think. And he knows WICKED can’t be trusted … The time for lies is over. But the truth is more dangerous than anyone could have imagined. With the Gladers divided, can they all make it?

At the end of the Scorch Trials, Thomas was taken to a white padded cell. Teresa reached out to him in a dream and told him that he was taken away because the flare was too deep rooted in his mind. Obviously her parting words are her favourite mantra-WICKED is good-as if.

As you may have expected, Rat Man (who appears in the Scorch Trials) tells the Gladers that there was never a cure and that most of the gladers are actually immune to the flare, whilst others are not and they were hoping to study the immune to see why their brain resists the flare so that they can develop a cure for the diseased. Thomas can’t decide whether to fight for a cure or to flee from WICKED and be free once and for all. Throughout this book Thomas is trying to work out if WICKED are the good guys or the bad and it’s not always clear to us as readers either. I don’t feel that WICKED is good but you may disagree with me after reading the book-i think Dashner leaves us free to make up our own minds as Thomas also does.

When Teresa and her group disappear (leaving only Newt, Minho & Thomas), Thomas finds his loyalties tested to the limit particularly when he discovers that Brenda and Jorge work for WICKED. As the plot unfolds an old enemy of Thomas’s returns (I won’t tell you who as this will spoil the plot) and a new group The Right Arm (sort of the anti WICKED) is revealed. Thomas is torn between whether to trust Brenda, who he now knows work for WICKED, or Teresa, after her betrayal in the previous book and whether WICKED or The Right Arm are really the good guys? To make his decision even harder, one of his friends (I won’t say who) is deeply infected by the Flare, which makes his decision to stay with WICKED and hope they do in fact find a cure, or leave to stop the manipulation from WICKED.

This third book in the series is by far my favourite. The chapters are fast paced and intense and as with all of the books, there is a twist at the end of each chapter. Without the constraints of WICKED or the Maze, we get to see the flare infested planet in all of it’s horror-the part at the crank palace is particularly horrific but it’s incredibly well described by Dashner. Also with WICKED no longer manipulating him, Thomas becomes far more rebellious and free spirited and we learn more about the personal intentions of different characters and how far they will go to get their revenge on WICKED. The mind games from WICKED are far from over though-there’s a great scene in which Thomas is being manipulated by WICKED that shows how evil they truly are and all of Rat Man’s scenes are incredibly creepy and show just how far he will go for a cure-in sheer creepiness the Rat Man is one of the best characters Dashner has created. Thomas is forced to make difficult decisions in this book, but it’s not just him so do Brenda, Jorge and Minho. The themes of love, trust and friendship are beautifully portrayed in this book.

Death Cure is set across a far wider landscape than the Scorch trials or the Maze runner were and we get to see a lot more places-the Crank Palace being my particular favourite-not because of what it contains but just because it is so well described by Dashner. The pace is very rapid and could easily be seen as a movie-in fact a little too fast in someways-I think this could actually have done with another book to finish the series just so more of the loose ends are tied up-you are still left with so many questions by the end of the book, but maybe that is the way Dashner wanted it, like the characters, we never know everything about everyone in this book. The only character’s back story we get to see is Thomas’s (and by extension Teresa’s) and I almost wish we’d been able to see more of the others’ past.

I think the ending is what it should be. I don’t want to spoil it for everyone else but it is a logical way to end the series and fits with the way his written the story. The final few chapters are explosive and I feel a well written ending to an amazing book.

This is such a brilliant trilogy that I really cannot recommend it enough to people. It’s incredibly written, exciting and an overall enjoyable experience reading these books.

My rating: 5/5 (and if i could give it more, I would)

The next book I will be writing a review for is Burn-the final book in the Pure trilogy by Julianna Baggott

The Scorch Trials Review

Book: The Scorch Trials
Author: James Dashner
This is the second book in The Maze Runner trilogy. The tag line says “the maze was only the beginning” and boy is it the truth. At the end of the Maze Runner, the boys thought they were safe, which couldn’t be further from the truth. WICKED-World In Catastrophe Killzone Experiment Department, are the evil creators of the maze, the ones who put Thomas and his friends through their hell in The Maze Runner. Now they’ve tricked Thomas and his friends all over again.

Here is a short synopsis of the book:
Thomas was sure that escape from the maze meant he and the Gladers would get their lives back. But no one knew what sort of life they were going back to. The earth is a wasteland. Government and order have disintegrated and now Cranks, people driven to murderous insanity by the infectious disease known as the Flare, roam the crumbling cities hunting for their next victim and meal.Thomas can only wonder – does he hold the secret of freedom somewhere in his mind? Or will he forever be at the mercy of WICKED? The pulse-pounding sequel to The Maze Runner.
WICKED made Thomas and his friends think that they were safe but now they are thrown into a new kind of hell-the Scorch Trials-they have to make their way across a vast expanse of desert, destroyed by the sun flares that ruined the world and meant the boys ended up in the maze. Dashner once again does a great job of describing how horrible the Scorch is, the oppressive heat and the awful lightning storms that could fry you if you get hit by a lightning strike. The plot as with the Maze Runner was incredible and I feel like you know a little more about Thomas by the end of the book as some of his memories start to return although we still don’t really know anything about anyone else. There is some development of the Teresa/Thomas romance but it gets smashed to smithereens-I won’t say much on this so as not to ruin the book for those who haven’t read it but essentially Teresa is not who you think she is and you find yourself wanting to punch her by the end of the book for hurting Thomas so bad-and I think he feels the same! She thinks she can get away with anything and do anything to Thomas and she’ll still be his best friend-I was glad that Thomas doesn’t really seem to trust her anymore by the end of the book though. A few new characters are introduced in this book, the most important being Brenda and Jorge.

I liked Thomas’ relationship with Brenda, more so than that of Teresa and there is a huge cliffhanger involving her, so I really want to see more of her past now. Jorge only has a short role in The Scorch Trials which will hopefully be expanded in the last book as I liked him and his scenes with both Minho and Thomas were great. This book is amazing, even better than the first. The addition of the cranks-people who have been infected by the flare-a disease occurring since the sun flares ruined the world which makes you go crazy and which the boys where put in the maze for as WICKED supposedly infected them with the flare to analyse their brain patterns and work out a cure-the cranks are a great addition, they add an extra dimension of horror to the book. After The Scorch Trials, the maze does seem incredibly tame. My love for Minho increased with this book because he kind of echoes my thoughts in his suspicions of WICKED and he’s really determined but he manages to bring some humour to the book which is nice-it’s more sarky humour but that fits really well with the book.

Another new character in this book is Aris and I wasn’t really drawn to him and since he was involved in the bad thing that Teresa did to Thomas, I kind of hated him by the end of the book.

Basically this book is amazing and anyone who thinks they might like it should go out and buy it!

My rating-5/5
The next book review will be for the final book of this series The Death Cure-I’m reading it at the moment, and I’m kind of sad that this amazing series is almost over for me.

 

The Maze Runner review

Book: The Maze Runner
Author: James Dashner
This was a book my friend got me for Christmas last year and I wasn’t sure if I was going to like it but I loved it! It’s a real page turner and although it’s billed as like the Hunger games, it’s really not-it’s even better if that’s possible. Here’s a synopsis of the book:
When the doors of the lift crank open, the only thing Thomas remembers is his first name. But he’s not alone. He’s surrounded by boys who welcome him to the Glade – a walled encampment at the centre of a bizarre and terrible stone maze. Like Thomas, the Gladers don’t know why or how they came to be there – or what’s happened to the world outside. All they know is that every morning when the walls slide back, they will risk everything – even the Grievers, half-machine, half-animal horror that patrol its corridors, to try and find out.
The mystery is part of what makes the book so good, so it’s quite difficult to review without giving away major plot spoilers. The chapters are relatively short but each chapter is so exciting that it doesn’t matter because you just want to keep reading. It’s very original, I’ve never read anything like it before. It’s going to make an incredible movie when that comes out because everything is so descriptive and it feels like you’re watching a movie when you’re reading it. Everytime you get answers, you are thrown more questions. Thomas, the protagonist can’t remember who he is when he arrives in the Glade, which basically means that you are as in the dark as the gladers themselves are which I loved because it means you get to learn about Thomas’ past as he does. The society the boys set up reminds me a little of Lord of The Flies except that it functions must better.

The grievers (these weird mechanical/animal hybrid things) are so creepy, but incredibly well written and you can easily understand why the gladers are so afraid. The gladers life in the maze gets turned upside down whe the last ever gladers and only girl-Teresa arrives, in a coma and it really changes the dynamic between this group of boys. Thomas recognises Teresa but he doesn’t know why and you are just as intrigued as he is to find out who she is in relation to him. The only thing he really knows is that he is destined to become a runner-one of the boys who run out in the maze trying to solve it. The chapters always end on some kind of cliffhanger meaning you have to read on and this is particularly important when bad things start happening after Teresa arrives. There’s no sugar coating of the blood and gore and evil of the maze but that just adds to the amazing world Dashner has created. Thomas himself is an incredibly complex character as he seems like the hero but as he learns more about his past, it’s clear he’s not quite as good as he’d like to think-yet you still really root for Thomas and his friends.

Hope, love and trust are the three main themes in this story and you’re often not sure as the reader who you can trust. If you’re hoping for an answer as to why the hell this dystopian world put all these boys in a maze, you won’t find it in this book-you have to read on. The lack of answers can make you frustrated at times but it’s also part of what makes the books so exciting and the lack of background story can also be frustrating but again it’s part of what makes the book exciting. The slang the boys use is a little off putting at first but you do get used to it. There’s some hints of romance between Thomas and Teresa but it’s not the main part of the book which I liked, because sometimes romance can overpower the action but it definitely doesn’t here. The ending of the book is spectacular and really leaves you wanting to know what happens next.

Chuck, is a little boy who Thimas kind of takes under his wing and he’s kind of annoying but sweet and the part of the ending which concerns him was so heartbreaking. Minho, I loved so much because with his sarkiness, he kind of reminds me of myself and I liked the friendship between him and Thomas. I didn’t really see as many parallels with the Hunger Games as other people did, it’s a great book in it’s own right. I didn’t see any of the big twists coming. I love how Thomas is a hero just using his wits through the book as are the other boys. There’s a sense of helplessness as the boys struggle to find their way out of the maze but they never give up.
This book is incredible and definitely worth a read for fans of books like The Hunger Games.

My rating-4/5 (the only reason I didn’t give it 5 is because the books just keep getting better!)
The next book I will review is the sequel to this one The Scorch Trials.