Monday, August 5, 2013

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner
2010, Delacorte Press
Series: Book 2 of The Maze Runner

Synopsis: 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?

The Good: The goals of WICKED remain undecipherable. What they want the kids for, what the desired end result of the testing is, all of the "whys" are unfathomable. Somehow, James Dashner continues to weave a tale in which the reader has no understand of the past, future or even the present and he makes it an enjoyable experience nonetheless.

The Bad: I strongly dislike "on the run" novels, especially when situated as the second book in a series. That's basically what the second trial is, getting from point A to point B alive and within the set time period. While other things happen along the way to clue readers in on how things arrived at this point and move along the characters personal relationships, for the most part the book is constant movement.

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