Thomas wakes up in The Glade, a large open area surrounded by high walls and populated by teenage boys. They have all arrived there like Thomas, disoriented and with enormous memory gaps. Outside of their haven lies a sprawling maze which the boys have been tasked to solved. The problem is that they must be back in The Glade by nightfall, as the entrances close and the Grievers–genetically engineered slug-monsters–come out. What’s worse: the maze shifts-position at night. In nearly two years, no one has been able to figure out the secret behind the maze. Though he does not know why, Thomas is sure he has come to The Glade for a purpose. Sure enough, just after he arrives, odd things begin to occur, and it seems like the boys’ world is about to come to a crashing, painful halt.
There were some slightly predictable aspects to the book, but I was still drawn in. I was impressed, however, after I saw a few things coming and then there was a bit of a curveball thrown at the end. Thomas is an interesting character, as we’ve got to figure out the precarious situation in which he has found himself. There are a few places I wish he’d made some different decisions, or adapted a bit quicker. What I really loved is that a larger conspiracy is at work, there is a method to the madness of the kids’ condition in The Glade. The story behind that is really an interesting one–one that I did not predict. I enjoyed the hints at a larger world beyond The Glade. In fact, it was probably the best thing for this series. We’re introduced to a broken world on the brink of something worse, seen in bits and pieces, leading up to something big in the subsequent books, which I will read.