Review: The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

24 Nov

Publisher: Random House Canada
Released: October, 2010
Genre: YA dystopia
One sentence summary: Just when you think you’ve solved the puzzle ….
Review copy from publisher.

Solving the Maze was supposed to be the end. No more puzzles. No more variables. And no more running. Thomas was sure that escape meant he and the Gladers would get their lives back. But no one really knew what sort of life they were going back to.

In the Maze, life was easy. They had food, and shelter, and safety . . . until Teresa triggered the end. In the world outside the Maze, however, the end was triggered long ago.

Burned by sun flares and baked by a new, brutal climate, the earth is a wasteland. Government has disintegrated—and with it, order—and now Cranks, people covered in festering wounds and driven to murderous insanity by the infectious disease known as the Flare, roam the crumbling cities hunting for their next victim . . . and meal.

The Gladers are far from finished with running. Instead of freedom, they find themselves faced with another trial. They must cross the Scorch, the most burned-out section of the world, and arrive at a safe haven in two weeks. And WICKED has made sure to adjust the variables and stack the odds against them.

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?

From RandomHouse Canada website.


It’s not often that I think a sequel does a better job than the original, but that is definitely the case here. While I thought The Maze Runner was an okay book, The Scorch Trials friggin’ blew me away.

This is one of those books that’s kinda hard to review, because I don’t want to give anything away. It’s filled with a lot of oooh and aaah moments that I think readers need to discover for themselves. So bear with me if this review seems a bit vague.

When I read The Maze Runner, I wasn’t really impressed with it. At all. Except for the last chapter. I knew that I was going to enjoy The Scorch Trials much, much more. There’s just a lot more interesting things going on in this book.  There’s more action. Personally I found the maze thing in the first book sorta, well, boring. But here, in The Scorch Trials, Thomas and the gang are actually working their way from point A to point B, not just getting up each morning and surviving. There was a different energy to this book as a result.

While I enjoyed the group dynamic aspect of The Maze Runner, Dashner severely ups the ante and the tension this book. Everyone has a serious case of mistrust and who’s with who is constantly changing. Not knowing who had Thomas’s back kept me off-balanced, but in a very good way. It was stressful not knowing what everyone’s agenda was and I liked it.

I also have a slight (okay, serious) obsession with all things plague so the fact that one of the obstacles for Thomas et al. were the Cranks (people who had been infected with the Flare disease) was awesome. This aspect of the story really drew me in and sealed the deal: this was a book I was going to love, and I did.



2 Responses to “Review: The Scorch Trials by James Dashner”

  1. amymckie November 24, 2010 at 4:14 pm #

    I still haven’t read that, have a pile of things I need to read first, but I can’t wait for when I can 😀

  2. Cait H. November 24, 2010 at 10:23 pm #

    I still don’t understand why I haven’t read this yet (I really really liked The Maze Runner). I’m so glad to hear that it’s good!

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