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15 Books Like The Maze Runner

Books Like The Maze Runner

If you’re a fan of the Maze Runner and are on the lookout for similar reads that will keep you on the edge of your seat, this blog post is for you. 

We’ll explore a selection of books that share elements of fast-paced action, complex worlds, and gripping plots similar to that of the Maze Runner series. 

Whether you’re drawn to dystopian societies, survival tales, or mind-bending mysteries, there’s something on this list to satisfy your appetite for adrenaline-fueled fiction. 

Let’s go. 

Books Like The Maze Runner

1. Divergent by Veronica Roth

Divergent” is set in a dystopian Chicago where society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue. Sixteen-year-old Beatrice Prior must choose between staying with her family in her current faction or transferring to another faction for the rest of her life. 

However, Beatrice harbors a secret that could mean death if discovered. As she navigates her way through initiation and faction politics, she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society.

Major Similarities: 

Like “The Maze Runner,” “Divergent” features a young protagonist facing life-threatening challenges in a dystopian setting. Both novels involve characters who must navigate complex social structures and confront the dark secrets of their societies. 

The themes of identity, belonging, and the courage to face the unknown are central to both stories, making “Divergent” a compelling read for fans of “The Maze Runner.”

2. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

In “The Hunger Games,” the dystopian nation of Panem is divided into twelve districts and the Capitol. Each year, one boy and one girl from each district are selected to participate in the Hunger Games, a televised fight to the death. When Katniss Everdeen volunteers to take her sister’s place in the games, she is thrust into a deadly competition where she must weigh survival against humanity and life against love.

Major Similarities: 

“The Hunger Games” shares with “The Maze Runner” a dystopian setting and a survival theme where young protagonists must fight for their lives in a controlled environment designed by oppressive regimes. 

Both stories explore themes of sacrifice, the importance of alliances, and resistance against a corrupt system, appealing to readers who enjoy action-packed narratives with socio-political undertones.

3. Legend by Marie Lu

“Legend” takes place in the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. The story is told from the perspectives of two protagonists: June, a prodigy born into an elite family, and Day, the country’s most wanted criminal

When June’s brother is murdered, and Day becomes the prime suspect, their paths cross in an explosive way. They discover the truth about their government and the lengths it will go to keep its secrets.

Major Similarities: 

Similar to “The Maze Runner,” “Legend” features a dystopian society with young protagonists who uncover a deep-seated conspiracy within their government. 

The novel’s dual perspective allows for a rich exploration of themes such as trust, loyalty, and resistance against oppression, mirroring the complex character dynamics and moral dilemmas found in “The Maze Runner.”

4. The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

“The 5th Wave” is set in a world devastated by alien attacks that have decimated most of the Earth’s population. Cassie Sullivan, one of the few survivors, must navigate a world where humanity is on the brink of extinction. 

As she prepares for the inevitable fifth wave of attacks, Cassie meets Evan Walker, who may be her only hope for saving her brother and surviving herself. The story combines elements of survival, trust, and humanity’s resilience in the face of an unseen enemy.

Major Similarities: 

Both “The 5th Wave” and “The Maze Runner” deal with young protagonists struggling to survive in post-apocalyptic worlds where the enemy is both powerful and mysterious. 

The themes of survival, the search for family, and the fight against a formidable and enigmatic threat are central to both narratives, making them appealing to readers who enjoy thrilling, high-stakes adventures.

5. The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

In “The Knife of Never Letting Go,” Todd Hewitt is the last boy in a town of men where everyone can hear each other’s thoughts in a constant, overwhelming Noise. 

One month before he’s to become a man, Todd discovers a spot of complete silence, which is impossible in his world. This discovery leads him on a journey that reveals the dark secrets of his town and forces him on a path of escape with only his dog as a companion.

Major Similarities: 

Like “The Maze Runner,” this novel features a young male protagonist thrust into a mysterious and dangerous situation, with the truth hidden behind layers of lies and manipulation. 

The unique setting of a world filled with Noise parallels the strange and hostile environment of the Maze, with both stories exploring themes of growing up, friendship, and the fight against a tyrannical power.

6. Matched by Ally Condie

“Matched” is set in a society where officials decide everything for its citizens, including whom they love, where they work, and when they die. When Cassia is matched with her best friend, Xander, it seems perfect. 

However, a glitch in the system momentarily shows her the face of another boy, Ky, leading her to question the infallibility of the system and embark on a journey of self-discovery and defiance against societal norms.

Major Similarities: 

Similar to “The Maze Runner,” “Matched” explores a controlled, dystopian society where the protagonists must question the rules and uncover the truth behind their world’s façade. 

Themes of rebellion, choice, and the questioning of authority link these novels, appealing to readers who enjoy narratives about young people challenging the status quo and discovering their identities in oppressive societies.

7. Delirium by Lauren Oliver

In “Delirium,” love is considered a disease, and society is cured of it at the age of eighteen. Lena looks forward to receiving the cure and leading a safe, predictable life. 

However, mere months before her treatment, she meets Alex, who introduces her to a world of feelings and freedom she never imagined. 

As her cure date approaches, Lena questions everything she has been taught and must make a choice between conformity and love.

Major Similarities: 

Like “The Maze Runner,” “Delirium” features a protagonist who starts to see the flaws in the society’s rules and the importance of human emotions and connections. 

Both novels tackle themes of control, resistance, and the awakening to new realities that challenge the protagonists’ initial beliefs, making “Delirium” resonate with fans looking for stories about breaking free from oppressive systems.

8. Across the Universe by Beth Revis

“Across the Universe” is set aboard the spaceship Godspeed, where Amy, a cryogenically frozen passenger, is unexpectedly awakened fifty years before the ship’s scheduled landing on a new planet. 

Amy discovers that life on Godspeed is highly regulated, and its leader, Eldest, harbors dark secrets about the ship and its journey. Together with Elder, the ship’s future leader, Amy unravels the mysteries of Godspeed, fighting for her right to live and love.

Major Similarities: 

Both “Across the Universe” and “The Maze Runner” are set in closed environments where the truth is manipulated by those in power. The themes of questioning authority, uncovering secrets, and fighting for freedom are prevalent in both stories. 

Readers who enjoy sci-fi elements and the struggle against dystopian societies will find “Across the Universe” particularly compelling.

9. Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

“Uglies” is set in a world where everyone undergoes surgery at sixteen to become a ‘Pretty’—physically perfect by society’s standards. Tally Youngblood looks forward to her operation until she meets Shay, who plans to escape the surgery in search of a community of rebels. 

When Shay disappears, Tally is forced into a decision by the authorities: find her friend and turn her in, or never become Pretty herself.

Major Similarities: 

Similar to “The Maze Runner,” “Uglies” explores a society with strict rules and the consequences of non-conformity. The protagonists in both stories are thrust into roles that challenge their perceptions of right and wrong and lead them to uncover the darker aspects of their worlds. 

Themes of friendship, freedom, and the questioning of societal norms are central to both novels, appealing to readers interested in stories of resistance and personal growth.

10. The Giver by Lois Lowry

The Giver” is set in a seemingly utopian society where pain, suffering, and choice do not exist. Everyone is assigned a role in the Community at twelve, and Jonas is selected to be the Receiver of Memory, the keeper of all past memories before the Community was formed. 

As Jonas receives memories from the Giver, he begins to understand the depth of emotion and freedom that has been sacrificed for stability, leading him to question everything he knows.

Major Similarities: 

“The Giver” and “The Maze Runner” both feature young protagonists who come to realize the flawed nature of their societies through the unveiling of secrets and memories. 

The journey from ignorance to enlightenment, the challenge against societal norms, and the quest for truth and freedom are themes that run deep in both stories, making “The Giver” a classic counterpart to the newer dystopian narratives.

11. The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken

In “The Darkest Minds,” a mysterious disease kills most of America’s children, but those who survive emerge with frightening abilities. The government, fearing these powers, places the survivors in internment camps. 

Ruby, one of the powerful survivors, escapes her camp and joins a group of other runaway teens. 

Together, they seek a safe haven but must evade government forces and confront the challenges of their new abilities.

Major Similarities: 

Like “The Maze Runner,” “The Darkest Minds” focuses on young protagonists navigating a hostile, post-apocalyptic world. Both novels delve into themes of survival, the discovery and mastery of one’s own abilities, and the fight against an oppressive system. 

The emphasis on friendship and loyalty amidst chaos and uncertainty makes “The Darkest Minds” a compelling read for fans of dystopian adventures.

12. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Red Queen” is set in a world divided by blood color—reds are commoners, and silvers are elites with god-like superpowers. 

Mare Barrow, a red girl, discovers she possesses a deadly power of her own, something that threatens to disrupt the balance of power. Forced into the silver world, she must navigate a dangerous game of betrayal and revolution, all while fighting to protect her heart and her people.

Major Similarities: 

Similar to “The Maze Runner,” “Red Queen” combines elements of dystopia and fantasy to explore themes of power, inequality, and resistance. 

Both stories feature young protagonists who unexpectedly find themselves at the center of a rebellion against a cruel and unjust society. The blend of action, intrigue, and the struggle for justice makes “Red Queen” resonate with readers who enjoy tales of courage and defiance.

13. The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

As the second book in “The Maze Runner” series, “The Scorch Trials” continues the story of Thomas and his friends after they escape the Maze. 

They face new challenges in the Scorch, a desolate landscape filled with unimaginable obstacles. Betrayal, secrets, and unexpected alliances form as they fight to survive and uncover the truth behind WICKED’s plans.

Major Similarities:

Being a direct sequel to “The Maze Runner,” “The Scorch Trials” shares the same universe and characters, further developing the themes of survival, loyalty, and the quest for truth. 

Readers who loved the mystery and suspense of “The Maze Runner” will find “The Scorch Trials” a seamless continuation of the saga, offering deeper insights into the dystopian world and its complexities.

14. The Death Cure by James Dashner

“The Death Cure” is the final installment in “The Maze Runner” trilogy, where Thomas faces the ultimate test. With memories restored, he and his friends must complete one last mission to save humanity from the deadly Flare virus. 

The journey leads to revelations about their past and the true intentions of WICKED, forcing Thomas to make impossible decisions for the sake of survival and freedom.

Major Similarities: 

As the conclusion to “The Maze Runner” series, “The Death Cure” intensifies the themes of sacrifice, determination, and the fight against tyranny. 

It provides answers to the series’ overarching mysteries and challenges its characters in new ways, making it a must-read for fans seeking closure and a satisfying end to the epic journey.

15. The Kill Order by James Dashner

“The Kill Order” is a prequel to “The Maze Runner” series, set in the time before the Maze was built. 

It explores the world as it faces the onset of the deadly Flare virus. The story follows Mark and Trina, who survive the initial outbreaks and must navigate a new world of chaos and decline. 

As they struggle to maintain hope, they uncover the dark origins of the virus and the lengths to which the government will go to control the population.

Major Similarities: 

Although “The Kill Order” does not feature the familiar characters from “The Maze Runner,” it shares the series’ dystopian setting and explores similar themes of survival against all odds, government conspiracy, and the human spirit’s resilience. 

It provides valuable background to the series’ world, making it an intriguing read for those interested in the events leading up to the creation of the Maze.

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