'The Waking' is based on a local legend from the author's hometown

By David Canfield
September 28, 2017 at 05:28 PM EDT
THE MAZE RUNNER Opening Night Q&A With Author James Dashner
Credit: Fred Hayes/Getty Images
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The Maze Runner author James Dashner is moving into adult fiction.

Random House announced Thursday the publication of The Waking, a new novel from the best-selling author that will mark his debut in the adult marketplace. The book centers on David Player, a widowed father of four who returns with his kids to his childhood home in South Carolina — the catalyst for a series of killings that resemble the murders that occurred there during his own childhood.

The book, inspired in part by the killings of Pee Wee Gaskins, a local legend in Dashner’s hometown, will alternate perspectives between David as an adult and as a boy.

Dashner’s middle-grade Maze Runner series currently has more than 15 million books in print and has repeatedly topped the New York Times best-seller list. It was recently adapted into a successful film franchise; the third in the series, The Death Cure, is due for release in January 2018.

The Waking will be published by Ballantine Books, an imprint of Random House.

The Maze Runner

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  • PG-13
  • 114 minutes
  • Wes Ball