Friday, April 18, 2014

Review: The Scorch Trials

The Scorch Trials (Maze Runner, book two)
By James Dashner
Published 2010 by Delacorte Press

WARNING: There may be spoilers for book one. To read my review of The Maze Runner, go here

Thomas and the Gladers believed that escaping the Maze would be the end of their ordeal. They are wrong. What awaits for them outside may be even worse.

After listening to the first book of this series on audio, I was in no great rush to pick up the second. However, my boyfriend felt a greater sense of urgency to find some answers to the puzzles presented in the first book, so I finally picked up the second.

This time around, we went with the print copy and I'm glad about that. I felt a bit frustrated while listening to book one as it seemed I would be able to read much faster than listening. I wasn't wrong. In addition to my ambivalence about the first title, I had heard from a few friends that the series only gets worse as it goes on, so I had some trepidation about picking up the second title. I don't think those criticisms are wrong and, though I see that when I initially added this book to my Goodreads account I gave it three stars, the more I think about it, the less I liked it.

This book shares the same fast pace as the first and that definitely works in its favor as the actual plot is pretty boring. There is little to no explanation of what is going on in this book, or why, and it quickly becomes tiresome reading. Additionally, I expected more character development in this entry in the series - that seems one way to keep the middle book in a trilogy from feeling like a chore you have to slog through to get to the exciting conclusion. Once again, there is little to no character development. It's not a good sign that I find both the plot and the characters just plain boring - this is supposed to be an adventurous science fiction novel!

I am of two minds about this series. On the one hand, I'm invested enough in the story that I want to find out the answers. On the other, it's just not very good. I'll finish it out, but I'm not sure I'll be reading any more Dashner after this.

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