Saturday, June 2, 2012

The Death Cure by James Dashner

image from LibraryThing
This is the third book in the Maze series.  There are so many variables that go in to how you feel about a book. I am trying to sort through my variables right now.  Hey - that sounds a little like WICKED and the trials and all that Thomas lived through in these books!

Anyway - there is a very fine line with books in a series. As a reader devouring book after book it is tremendously annoying when the first few chapters are spent summing up the past book.  But, if you are a reader who is savoring the books as they are written there are often months or even years between installments and details fade.  So, although I remember the big items - I can't remember names or feelings.  Instead it's more like returning memories - bits and pieces that don't always fit squarely together. (Poor Thomas again!!!)

The Death Cure is a book that suffered for me due to my foggy recollection.  I loved The Maze Runner and flew through The Scorch Trials and then waited.  So - as I started reading Cure I had a really hard time. It took me a while to remember why I didn't like Teresa or how I really felt about Brenda.  I never did figure out why Gully had such a messed up face.  And the lack of those details made this hard for me to completely buy in to.  The whole situation is built on lies and perceptions and misinformation and when the reader has a hard time remembering...

So, this is another in a line of 'the future world is a horrible place' books and the final solution is a teenager named Thomas.  I like Thomas.  He has what it takes to be empathetic and impulsive and brave and he is a complete package.  I also liked to hate Rat Man. He is the perfect creepy, manipulative character that you have no choice but to want to punch and since he is the face of WICKED - it's easy to hate them as well.

But, what a world!!! A man made virus has been released on the population following devastating solar flares. WICKED is an organization testing munnies (immune subjects) to attempt to find a cure. But - it's all a secret and the virus is spreading to even the creators of the trials.  There are memory wipes, cannibalizing, virus-sticken victims and lots of running!!

So, Mr. Dashner - your trilogy has made me wonder about my own abilities in times of trial. Thomas made many decisions based on the facts he understood at the moment. And he had the decency to lament and be tormented by those decisions when the entire story came to him. He paid the price for his zeal and his single mindedness.  He also worked for an unexpected solution - willing to make the final sacrifice - but was even that manipulated???

I would highly recommend these - but all in order - not spread out over time!

One more thought - could there be a supplement in the back of books in a series summarizing the previous installments of the story for those who need it and easily ignored for those who don't?  Books add short teasers of new novels - this could be a short synopsis... just a thought :)