Book Review: Scythe

Hello wonderful people!

Welcome to the month of September! Let’s start this new month off with a book review!

Neal Shusterman published Scythe in 2016. It is the first book in his trilogy, Arc of a Scythe. The story is set in a distant future, completely different from today’s reality. In Scythe, everything such as disease, government, and even mortality has been abolished. Humans have figured out a way to live in a society where no one really dies, no one is ever sick, and no one lives in poverty.

Despite how dreamy a world like this sounds, not everything is perfect. Because no one dies, the Scythedom was created; a society of modern-day scythes, people tasked with the responsibility and the honor of taking lives to control the population. No one can interfere with a Scythe, and no one can really die unless a Scythe lets it be so.

The story starts when two young teens, Citra and Rowan, are taken on as Scythe apprentices under Honorable Scythe Faraday. They must learn the ways of a Scythe, how to kill (or glean) and how to live this new life. Soon after they are taken on, a new problem emerges. At the end of their apprenticeship, only one may become a Scythe, and their first order of business will be to glean the other. Despite Citra and Rowan’s worries, there is more unrest and more conflict within the Scythedom, and living in this perfect world will always come at a price.

This was a book I had on my to-be-read list for a while, even though I never knew what it was about. One day while thrift shopping, I found a copy of Scythe at an amazing price, so I bought it! It was one of the best purchases ever! I love the feeling you have when you find a new, completely captivating story unlike anything you’ve ever read. I just finished the book yesterday and knew I had to write a review about it.

Let’s take a look at the writing.

Neal Shusterman has a way of writing that puts you beside the characters. You’re in their heads without reading in a first-person perspective. The “choppy” feeling of breaks between scenes and chapters makes the story move faster than it is, adding another layer of thrill to the story without disrupting the flow of the plot.

People say there is no longer such as a thing as an original story idea, only a fresh idea. If that’s the case, this story is FRESH! I have never read a book that vividly describes a reality so similar to our own, yet so different at the same time. It makes you connect with the characters without having to know their every thought and emotion. The story almost gives you sci-fi novel vibes, but it doesn’t really feel like I can place it in that genre.

Overall, Scythe is captivating and enticing. It’s a thriller like none I have read before. It makes you stop and really think about what life would be like if we lived in a world where death was no more, and the worldly depiction of such a society is so believable it’s scary. I can’t wait to read the second book.

I would recommend this book for teens and anyone above. This read is definitely worth it! Buy the book here.

As always, happy reading!

If you’ve read the book, put your thoughts in the comments! If not, comment anyway! I always love to know what other readers and writers think.

-R.E. Klinzing

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