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The Kill Order – Book Review

In Sunday’s wee hours of the morning, I finally finished reading The Kill Order by James Dashner.

It is billed as the prequel to the series; it was published after the other three books.  Thus, I read it last.

If you read my blog regularly, you’ll know that I have not enjoyed Dashner’s other books in this Maze Runner series.  The concept was actually quite good; however, it was not executed well, in my opinion.

Sure, there were characters that I actually liked, but they were far and few between.

In this final installment, readers learn what led to the maze being created in the first place.

I actually enjoyed this book most out of all four.  The dialogue was not as juvenile.  This could be due to one of the main characters being an older teen.

I liked the characters in this book as well and rooted for them to survive.

However, I still had trouble getting through this book simply because I had nothing pulling me back to it, unlike the scores of other Young Adult fiction books I’ve read over the last two years.

The fighting scenes in this book dragged on forever.  Perhaps young men reading these scenes will appreciate them, given the virtual reality games they like to play.

I am a female, which sounds stereotypical, but I just didn’t enjoy them.

The positives that I can say about this series is that I think it does appeal to young men who crave action when they read.  The text is not high complexity, and the chapters are short, which makes the books perfect for struggling readers who cannot seem to get past two or three pages in one sitting.

With all of that said, I am glad to have finally closed the back cover of this series.

I’m already nearly finished with a book a began immediately afterward.  I’ll be back with another review shortly!

The Death Cure – A Book Review

Saturday night, I finished the third book in The Maze Runner series, books written by James Dashner.

If you’ve read my reviews for the previous books in this series, you’ll know that I haven’t been a big fan.

The dialogue is somewhat juvenile, although I do like the clever way in which the kids swear without using the real swear words.

The plot, though, has always been somewhat shallow, as have the characters.

The third book picked up where the second one left off, with the characters trying to find the cure to the virus that is killing off mankind.

It seems as though it took me forever to get through this book.

I just wasn’t very interested but remained determined for my students’ sake.

About 3/4 of the way into the book, the action finally picked up speed, and I actually stayed up until 3am to finish.  I wanted to know if Thomas was going to make it through alive.

When I closed the back cover, it was with relief, unfortunately.

I really like reading books that make me with they went on and on without end.  Those are the books that stay with me long-term.

I doubt that this series will.

There is a fourth book, the prequel, titled Kill Order.  I’m a few chapters in and hope to finish within the next few days.

I will be glad to put these books to rest…for good.

The Scorch Trials – A Book Review

As you know, I’m constantly reading something.

My most recent book conquest was The Scorch Trials, by James Dashner. It is book #2 of his Maze Runner series.

I wasn’t super-happy with the first book, although the premise was good. Unfortunately, I think that The Hunger Games series, while written after The Maze Runner series, eclipsed Dashner’s series.

However, in the interest of honestly recommending books for my students, I have chosen to continue reading Dashner’s series. Hence, book #2.

In this installment, the crew that escaped from the maze in book #1 is put through a new set of trials. They must cross a desert and find the safe haven, where they’ll be given The Cure, which will heal them from the sickness they were infected with after they escaped.

The plot had potential; however, I found myself struggling to read my way through the book. I was curious enough to keep reading, but I can’t say that I overly enjoyed it, unlike the book I’m currently reading (review to come as soon as I finish).

I feel kind of badly writing this review, but it is an honest assessment.

The good points are that the chapters are short, and the readability is low enough that a struggling high school student can pick it up with no problem. The series is appropriate for middle school readers, by the way.

There is a lot of action, so it’s great for the boys. There are strong female characters, which will appeal to the girls. There’s also a bit of teenage romantic drama, which girls will like as well (and the boys won’t go “ick” to).

Overall, it’s not a bad series, but when compared to other teen fiction I’ve been reading of late, it’s just okay.

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