Emily Fishman: Mixed Feelings

Something that I recall reading that I both loved and hated was the first book in the Maze Runner series by James Dashner. The plot is reminiscent of the average YA dystopian novel that was ludicrously popular six years ago, and just like with every other book in that genre, I read it right when it came out. The features of the maze, the camaraderie between the boys, the mystery of the monsters beyond the walls were all things I loved about the book.

However, there were so many things that I hated, primarily the main character Thomas. Thomas was boring, basically useless until the plot decided he needed to do ALL THE THINGS. The character’s main issue is that he doesn’t know anything (he’s had his memory wiped) and because he was so annoying I didn’t care at all that he spent most of the book asking questions that nobody answered.

For me, I think there is a relationship between what I liked and what I ┬áhated. Thomas was so bland because the story, with all of its intense moving parts, couldn’t handle an interesting/compelling main character, so Thomas just became a vehicle by which the audience discovered the world. One necessitated the other. If James Dashner ever asks me to do a rewrite, I think this probably could be fixed by putting the entire novel in first person, so at least the reader could feel connected to the boringness that is Thomas, but it remains a third-person mess.

Emily Fishman

Hi! My name is Emily Fishman and I am a senior from Houston, Texas. I'm an English major, and a brand-new Writing minor. I also work for Sweetland as a peer consultant, so needless to say I love writing

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