Book Review: The Kill Order

After finished the trio of books that comprise The Maze Runner trilogy by James Dashner, I quickly discovered – what?!? – there’s a fourth book! Titled “The Kill Order,” the book is a 2012-published prequel to the trilogy.

I walked into this book with many, many questions. The Maze Runner trilogy wraps up decently, but still leaves readers with many questions, particularly about the backstory behind the events in the maze, the experiments, The Flare, and more.

Like many others, I hoped that The Kill Order would answer all of my questions.

It didn’t.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s a good book and it does provide a lot of background, but not quite what I’d hoped. The book begins just as Thomas is about to have his memory Swyped, but that’s the most we hear about the two of them the entire book.

After that, the story shifts to 13 years prior to those events. It tells the story of a group of people  – among them Mark, Trina, Alec and Deedee. The earth is in total chaos, having just been hit by sun flares that have completely destroyed large portions of the earth and obliterated many people. Tsunamis are beginning, the climate is all out of whack, and on top of all that, there’s an unknown virus that seems to be driving everyone crazy. Except Deedee.

Basically – it’s a story about survival. Through many events, the group learns how to be strong, defend themselves, make it through seemingly impossible situations… only to have things never let up. The scary part is that all of these events – sun flares, the virus, etc. – are all quite realistic and could possibly happen someday. Who knows?

I’m not going to drag on with details about the plot. If you want to know what happens, go read the book. I will say this: Deedee’s immune to the virus, which would obviously link her to the future experiments and Thomas and Teresa’s experiences in the maze. We do find out more about the virus and how it came about and how it spread, but we have no idea how the maze idea happened, who The Creators were or how Thomas’ mother managed to stay alive long enough to give birth to him. We don’t get really any backstory on Thomas and Teresa’s friendship/relationship prior to the Maze, so if you’re expecting that, you’re going to be disappointed.

The Kill Order is definitely worth reading once you’ve gotten through The Maze Runner, The Scorch Trials and The Death Cure. It continues in the same science-fiction dystopian realm of the trilogy, it’s action-packed and will keep you on the edge of your seat. I felt like it left a few huge gaps, which was ultimately frustrating, so all I can do now is hope somehow that those gaps can be filled in someday…


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