I finally got around to reading books #2 and #3 in the Maze Runner Series: The Scorch Trials and The Death Cure, by James Dashner. Both these books were action-packed!
First off, The Scorch Trails:
I found the Maze Runner to be intense, but the Scorch Trials (and The Death Cure) actually scared me – I literally couldn’t sleep because I kept picturing Cranks (crazy, Fare-Infected basically zombie-like people). In the Scorch Trails, Thomas and his friends are sent on a mission to cross this crazy desert (the Scorch) and Crank-infested city in search of the “Safe Haven” on the other side of the Mountains to the North. The Trials continue – the organization called “WICKED” is still trying to collect data by submitting groups of teenagers to some truly awful conditions.
This book was definitely different from the Maze Runner, and I appreciated that things about WICKED and the state of the world actually got explained (a bit) as the story goes along. The story takes a few twists, which I actually expected.
Aside from the bad call of reading this right before bed, I did enjoy it overall. It is NOT going to be on my re-read list, however.
Overall rating: 3/5
I immediately started The Death Cure after finishing the Scorch Trials. This book just felt like an extension of the first two. WICKED wants to restore the memories of the Gladers and Group B, and most of them decide to go along with it. Thomas breaks free from WICKED, along with Minho and Newt, with the help of two new friends he met in the Scorch (Brenda & Jorge). Thomas must struggle with his own inner conflicts as he tries to figure out what to do and who to trust. Ultimately, this leads him to a final show-down with WICKED.
I was still scared by the Cranks (seriously, disturbing) but I liked this book better than the Scorch Trials. Perhaps because there was (a little) less Cranks and more fighting WICKED.
I feel quite strongly that endings should leave you feeling hopeful and uplifted about the future of the characters and I am happy to say that this book delivered. Despite the craziness, I liked the end.
So all in all, I would give this book a 3.5 / 5.
It was an interesting series. Again, its not one that I will re-read, and I’m not sure I want to read the prequel book (The Kill Zone), but I’m glad I got through them all.