alt coverage4Inspired by The Lord of the Flies and Ender’s Game, James Dashner’s book The Maze Runner released on Oct. 6, 2009, is just recently gaining popularity thanks to the book-based movie that premiered Sept. 19.

As book-based movies tend to do, The Maze Runner, directed by Wes Ball, has compelled teens to read the book.

“[I first picked up the book because] I saw the spikes and wall and thought that the topic of the book was interesting,” sophomore Jose Vasquez-Dickson, who recently finished reading The Maze Runner said.

Inside the book, most are not impressed by the writing, which is deemed mediocre by critics, but by Dashner’s ability to transport the reader into a new and exciting world filled with mystery and monsters.

“Sometimes, while I was reading, I felt my heart pumping really fast,” Vasquez-Dickson said.

Though many other popular novels have this effect on readers, The Maze Runner stands out from the crowd with the easily grasped terminology which the characters in the book, or gladers, have created, such as shank, shuck, green bean and klunk.

“Normally with a sci-fi, authors like to put a lot of big words and futuristic slang.  [James Dashner’s] slang is easy to understand and it made the book flow at a good pace,” senior Tilley Van Dyke, a long time fan of the series, said.

Dashner has also mastered the art of keeping just enough information to keep readers waiting in suspense.

“I think he was able to keep the readers attention,” Alyssa Goss, who just recently became a fan, said.

The publicity the movie provided globalized the book on a whole new scale, making it known to even more potential readers.  Though this is essential for the success of the book, readers who became fans because of the book itself are offended by bandwagoners and may see them as outcasts in the fandom.

“I was just proud of myself for knowing about [the book] before [the movie came out],” Van Dyke said.

On the  other hand, fans may be happy to share their fandoms with more people and embrace those looking to read the book after the movie comes out.

“It’s such a trend, does anyone have an original movie anymore?” Goss said.

Details that were lost during the transition from paper to screen make it hard for fans who did not read the book to keep up with the plot twists throughout the movie.

“They got from point A to point B but in a different way than the book,” Van Dyke said.

Fans of the first book and movie will be happy to know that the second book in the series, The Scorch Trials, is in the making of a movie and is scheduled to premiere in theaters September of 2015 with Wes Ball returning as director.  Fans can expect another fast paced, thrilling movie that will be sure to increase the size of the fandom once again.

“[Had the movie not set up for The Scorch Trials], I would be mad because it wouldn’t be fair to keep information from people who didn’t read the book,” Van Dyke said.

In the meantime, fans can read his other novels, The Infinity Rings series, The 13th Reality series, The Jimmy Fincher series and his newest project, The Eye of Minds series.


By Alexis Buskirk

I play volleyball and love to read and write. I also do a lot of volunteer work.

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