The Game of Lives by James Dashner
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
When everyone was crazy about young adult dystopian novels, I decided to jump into James Dashner’s The Maze Runner series. If the truth is to be known, it’s my least favourite of the popular young adult dystopian trilogies. I like to think I’m a pretty nice reader, in that I give authors multiple chances before I decide they are not for me. Sometimes I’m surprised and realise it’s just a single series by the author that is not for me, other times I am shown it is the author who is not for me.
James Dashner seems to fall into the latter category. As my second chance to James Dashner, I decided to grab The Mortality Doctrine trilogy – it seemed interesting enough, offering something different to The Maze Runner series – yet the first book did little to win me over. The second book also failed to win me over. This third book confirmed what I’d already come to believe – The Mortality Doctrine was less enjoyable than The Maze Runner series.
The Mortality Doctrine is a series that seems interesting enough on the surface, but once you get into it you start to realise it isn’t quite all it could be. The Eye of Minds and The Rules of Thoughts failed to suck me in, but I did see where things could have been taken further. I held out hope The Game of Lives would be the book to finally take things that little bit further, but it wasn’t to be. In fact, I wanted to be generous and round this one up to a three-star rating, yet the fact I was never as invested as I could have been made it impossible for me to do such a thing – I kept waiting, hoping, for that little bit more, and it never did arrive.
The first book, at least, had a twist to the end of it that evoked a small emotional response from me – even if it was just anger for failing to notice the twist earlier – yet this final book failed to evoke any kind of response from me. Even things that should have raised something within me failed to do so. I think, by this point, I just wanted to see how it ended – Google would have worked just as well as reading the novel, if I’m honest.
At this point, having given two Dashner series a read, it is safe to say James Dashner is not an author for me and I will not be reading more of his work in the future.
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