Monday, June 29, 2015

Book Review: The Kill Order

Title: The Kill Order (The Maze Runner, #0.5)
Author: James Dashner
Published: August 14, 2012 by Delacorte Books
Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia
Format: Paperback
Source: Bingo Game Prize
The prequel to the New York Times bestselling Maze Runner series.

Before WICKED was formed, before the Glade was built, before Thomas entered the Maze, sun flares hit the earth and mankind fell to disease.

Mark and Trina were there when it happened, and they survived. But surviving the sun flares was easy compared to what came next. Now a disease of rage and lunacy races across the eastern United States, and there’s something suspicious about its origin. Worse yet, it’s mutating, and all evidence suggests that it will bring humanity to its knees.

Mark and Trina are convinced there’s a way to save those left living from descending into madness. And they’re determined to find it—if they can stay alive. Because in this new, devastated world, every life has a price. And to some, you’re worth more dead than alive.


(Warning: Review contains spoilers!)

The Kill Order by James Dasher is the prequel to his New York Times bestselling series The Maze Runner. It tackles the origin of the sun flares and the deadly mutating virus that can turn anyone into a certified Crank. However, despite Dashner's clever idea to publish a prequel that'll provide a deeper insight to the aforementioned worldwide crisis that literally wiped out more than half of the planet's population, I honestly did not see the point of this book.

The tale of Mark and Alec and their friends thirteen years before WICKED was formed, I believe, is unnecessary. I get that it provides an explanation to the sun apocalypse thing and the virus called the Flare, but I think that a single scene from any of the three major books that explains it would have sufficed. Furthermore, I realized that The Kill Order is called the prequel for a very specific and obvious reason. I should have started the series marathon with this book because, now that I have grown too attached to the original charactersThomas, Teresa, Newt, MinhoI had a hard time getting myself fully engaged into the story. I felt like I was reading an entirely different book and not one that is part of The Maze Runner series.

Frankly speaking, Alec, the military veteran who I pictured as the mighty Dwayne Johnson despite his contextual physical description, did not get enough credit. The book's synopsis made it sound like Trina's the second-in-command, the Newt to Mark's Thomas, when Alec has been a part of the story ninety-five percent of the time. He has played a huge and important role in the book, so should he have at least earned a rightful recognition in the synopsis?

Another thing that I did not like about The Kill Order, and probably the thing that I dislike the most, is the "cult." It seems very strange to me and so out of place. When it was first introduced in the book, I literally scrunched my eyebrows trying to make some sense of their purpose or role in the entire book. I know that they are the crazy settlers, the people whom the little girl Deedee was raised with, but . . . what about them, really? I saw no connection.

Perhaps the only thing that I truly like about this book is the evident consistency that Dasher webbed into his booksor this series in particular. If Thomas has been recalling memories through his dreams, Mark has been as well. Setting aside completely the prologue and the epilogue, I think that this parallelism between Thomas and Mark is the only thing that is still reminding me of the connection between The Kill Order and The Maze Runner. In addition to this, even though I deemed the prequel unnecessary, I still like the fact that I at least have an overview of how Teresa, or Deedee for that matter (I ruined it now, didn't I? I did warn you), fell into the hands of an organization that in the future will be known as WICKED.

I would not actually recommend this book. As I have mentioned before, the story of Mark is quite inessential, and there aren't really much that you should know before delving into The Maze Runner series. I'd say just jump right into it and come back to me after you've finished page 250 of The Death Cure, so we can both bawl our eyes out in pure heartbreak.

✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖


James Dashner is the author of the New York Times bestselling Maze Runner series, as well as the Mortality Doctrine series, the 13th Reality series, and two books in the Infinity Ring series: A Mutiny in Time and The Iron Empire. He was born and raised in Georgia but now lives and writes in the Rocky Mountains.

✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖

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