The Maze Runner series took the world by storm, becoming a New York Times best-seller, being optioned for a Hollywood movie and making author James Dashner a household name.
Last fall, the final book in the Maze Runner series, “The Death Cure,” was released, leaving fans to wonder what they would read next. But just a month later James made an exciting announcement — a prequel was in the works and would be available in August 2012.
“The Kill Order” takes readers to a world still reeling from solar flares. Those who survived the initial onslaught have returned to focusing on the basics — food, shelter, etc. The flares wiped out almost everything, super-heating the Earth.
Mark and Trina were riding the subway when the flares hit. At first they didn’t understand what was happening, but soon it became all to clear. They survived in the tunnels, living in the darkness until joining with others and escaping to the surface.
Months later, small groups of survivors have started to create communities of sorts, but people still keep to their own. Mark and Trina are finally starting to feel a sense of normalcy when things take yet another turn for the worse.
People are becoming sick. Not just a little sick, but severe behavior changing sick. Lunacy sick. The disease is running rampant, and the origins of it are more than a little suspicious. With each day it seems to get worse. The symptoms keep changing. And if something isn’t done quickly, all of humanity could be wiped out.
“The Kill Order” is a fast-paced, at times white-knuckle story that fans of the Maze Runner series will gobble up. But it should appeal to people who haven’t read the series yet, too. Being a prequel, you don’t have to know anything about Dashner’s world. While those with previous exposure may have more familiarity with some elements, most of it is new.
Dashner is in his element here, creating tension around every corner. The book is a fast read, too — I read it in a little more than three hours. Heading into “The Kill Order” I was a little worried it would just be part of a marketing ploy (“The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner” anyone?). That was not the case. It’s clear Dashner was just as invested in “Kill Order” as he was in the other books of the series.
Read James Dashner’s interview with Cracking the Cover.