The Maze Runner Books In Order Of Publication


The first book in James Dashner’s series of YA dystopian science fiction novels was published in 2009. In this book, readers are introduced to a group of teenagers who have been taken captive and left in a strange place called the “Glade.” Beyond their strange surroundings is a maze which may hold their exit to freedom. Do they escape? There will be no spoilers here!

Several sequels followed the first novel in the series as well as two prequels. In 2022, a new book was released that took place 73 years after the last in the original trilogy. Titled The Maze Cutter, the novel follows the descendants of the Gladers, the young teens from the earlier books. A second book in this new trilogy is expected in November 2023. 

Dashner’s books were critically well-received, which is probably why they were adapted into a film trilogy. At the time of writing, there is no news of any further films in the series, but we expect the prequels and Maze Cutter series of books will get a TV or film adaptation at some point in the future. 

In this article, we list all of the Maze Runner books in publication order. Which of these is your favourite? Let us know in the comments below.

The Maze Runner

First Published: October 2009

Type: Fiction

Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Synopsis: When the doors of the lift crank open, the only thing Thomas remembers is his first name. But he’s not alone. He’s surrounded by boys who welcome him to the Glade – a walled encampment at the centre of a bizarre and terrible stone maze.

Like Thomas, the Gladers don’t know why or how they came to be there – or what’s happened to the world outside. All they know is that every morning when the walls slide back, they will risk everything – even the Grievers, half-machine, half-animal horror that patrol its corridors, to try and find out.

The Scorch Trials

First Published: September 2010

Type: Fiction

Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Synopsis: Thomas was sure that escape from the maze meant he and the Gladers would get their lives back. But no one knew what sort of life they were going back to. The earth is a wasteland.

Government and order have disintegrated and now Cranks, people driven to murderous insanity by the infectious disease known as the Flare, roam the crumbling cities hunting for their next victim – and meal. Thomas can only wonder – does he hold the secret of freedom somewhere in his mind? Or will he forever be at the mercy of WICKED?

The Death Cure

First Published: October 2011

Type: Fiction

Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Synopsis: The Trials are over. WICKED have collected all the information they can. Now it’s up to the Gladers to complete the blueprint for the cure to the Flare with a final voluntary test. But something has happened that no one at WICKED has foreseen: Thomas has remembered more than they think. And he knows WICKED can’t be trusted….

The time for lies is over. But the truth is more dangerous than anyone could have imagined. With the Gladers divided, can they all make it?

The Kill Order

First Published: August 2012

Type: Fiction

Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Synopsis: When sun flares hit the Earth, intense heat, toxic radiation and flooding followed, wiping out much of the human race. Those who survived live in basic communities in the mountains, hunting for food.

For Mark and his friends, surviving is difficult, and then an enemy arrives, infecting people with a highly contagious virus. Thousands die, and the virus is spreading. Worse, it’s mutating, and people are going crazy.

It’s up to Mark and his friends to find the enemy – and a cure – before the Flare infects them all ..

The Fever Code

First Published: September 2016

Type: Fiction

Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Synopsis: The world has ended: the earth is scorched, and fever rages through the population. Out of the chaos, a boy emerges with the power to change everything: Thomas. This is the start of his story.

An electrifying Maze Runner prequel, The Fever Code holds all the answers: How did WICKED find the Gladers? Who are Group B? Whose side are Thomas and Teresa really on?

Lies will be exposed. Secrets uncovered. Loyalties proven. You’ll never see the truth coming …

Crank Palace

First Published: August 2020

Type: Fiction

Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Synopsis: Newt has been to hell and back with his friends.

The Glade. The Maze. The Scorch. The inner halls of WICKED. But now he has a burden that can’t be shared with Thomas and the others—the Flare. And Newt can’t bear the thought of his friends watching him descend into madness as he succumbs to the virus.

Leaving only a note, Newt departs the Berg before the Gladers return from their mission into Denver, Colorado. From there, he experiences the gritty nightmare of life on the streets, running from the infected and those hunting them, until he ends up in the Crank Palace, the last dumping ground of those without hope. Although Newt thought he was running away from his friends to save them from himself, along the way he meets a young mother named Keisha and her son, Dante, who end up saving Newt in a way he could never have imagined.

Taking place during the latter events of The Death Cure, Crank Palace tells the story of Newt like never before, from inside his own mind, as he searches for meaning in a life gone horribly wrong. He will try to fulfill a new-found destiny before his path leads to its inevitable conclusion—and one last meeting with his best friend.

The Maze Cutter

First Published: November 2022

Type: Fiction

Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Synopsis: Seventy-three years after the events of THE DEATH CURE, when Thomas and other immunes were sent to an island to survive the Flare-triggered apocalypse, their descendants have thrived. Sadina, Isaac, and Jackie all learned about the unkind history of the Gladers from The Book of Newt and tall tales from Old Man Frypan, but when a rusty old boat shows up one day with a woman bearing dark news of the mainland–everything changes.

The group and their islander friends are forced to embark back to civilization where they find Cranks have evolved into a more violent, intelligent version of themselves. The islanders are hunted by the Godhead, the Remnant Nation, and scientists with secret agendas. When they cross paths with an orphan named Minho from the Remnant Nation, the dangers become real and they don’t know who they can trust. The islanders will have to survive long enough to figure out why they are being targeted, who is friend or foe, and what the Godhead has planned for the future of humanity.

Are you a fan of The Maze Runner series? Which of these novels is your favourite? Let us know in the comments below.


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