ARC Review: Scythe by Neal Shusterman


Scythe by Neal Shusterman
 Scythe #1
Genre: YA Dystopia, Science Fiction
Publication: November 22nd 2016 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Length: 448 pages
Format: eARC

In a world where disease has been eliminated, the only way to die is to be randomly killed (“gleaned”) by professional reapers (“scythes”). Citra and Rowan are teenagers who have been selected to be scythe’s apprentices, and—despite wanting nothing to do with the vocation—they must learn the art of killing and come to understand the necessity of what they do.

Only one of them will be chosen as a scythe’s apprentice. And when it becomes clear that the winning apprentice’s first task will be to glean the loser, Citra and Rowan are pitted against one another in a fight for their lives.

I hadn’t heard much about this novel, but when Alexandra @ Twirling Pages raved about this one, I knew I had to check it out for myself! Overall, I was overall okay with this novel, but I expected something more.

The concept of this novel is incredibly intriguing. In a world where disease, poverty, and basic human struggles are gone, it is up to scythes to kill people to maintain population levels. Think perfect utopia and scythes are the only ones allowed to kill or “glean” others. When Citra and Rowan become apprentices, shenanigans ensue (vagueness intended because I don’t want to spoil anything.)

This novel is told in a omniscient third person, so it’s interesting to see both people’s perspectives, despite how similar they may seem at first. Throughout the novel, you read glimpses about previous people’s gleanings and although it seems unnecessary, I enjoyed how it all fit in and entwined everyone’s stories by the end.

The only reservations I have about this novel is that I thought it started out incredibly well-done—it was fun to read and it was super engaging; I thought it was a solid 4 stars. However, by the end of the novel, I felt like it was 3 stars. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely will pick the next book up (as it ends on a moderate cliffhanger), but I wasn’t wow-ed at the end like I had hoped.

Thank you to Simon & Schuster for providing a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Have you read SCYTHE yet? What did you think? Are you planning to read this one? Let me know in the comments!


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