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#Review: Scythe by Neal Shusterman


28954189Scythe (Arc Of A Scythe #1)

Author: Neal Shusterman

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers 

Genre/Themes: Fiction, Sci-Fi, Dystopian, YA

Release Date: November 22nd 2016

Page Count: 433

Format: ARC

ISBN: 9781442472426

Author Website | Book Depository | Amazon |
Chapters/IndigoGoodreads | Kobo

Maria's Rating -5-01

“You have three hundred sixty-five days of immunity.” And then, looking him in the eye, said, “And I’ll be seeing you on day three hundred sixty-six.”

I received an ARC of Scythe by Neal Shuterman from Simon & Schuster Canada in exchange for an honest review. This in no way effects my personal rating.

Everyone in the bookish community has always highly praised the work of Neal Shusterman. I finally had the chance to pick up my first Shusterman book earlier this year when I read Bruiser. It blew my mind so hard that I knew I needed to continue on and read as many more Neal Shusterman books as possible. When I was asked by Simon and Schuster Canada if I would like to read and review his newest novel Scythe, I of course enthusiastically said yes!


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.

What I Liked

The concept. The concept behind Scythe was absolutely fantastic. It was a really unique read in a world wear dystopian novels have all started to feel the same. It was so creative and unlike anything I have ever read before. The idea of a futuristic world in which death is a thing of the past and the only solve to overpopulation is to be killed (gleaned) by a Scythe. The Scythes are here to make sure that the natural order of the world still happens by making sure they glean the right amount of people each year to meet their quota. That concept alone is unique in itself. Then we bring in these two young teens, both chosen as apprentices to become scythes. While at first they were both chosen, a chain of events causes the two to be forced to fight against one another, as now only one of them can become a scythe…that has to glean the loser. On top of all that, we have the Thunderhead, which was once the Cloud (yes, the same cloud that exists in our world today) only it has now become a sentient being that basically governs the world. The only thing it can’t touch or control is the Scythedom. I mean…how interesting does all of that sound?! So unique, so brilliant.

The characters. Citra and Rowan were both fantastic main characters. I loved their friendship and the complications that later effected it. I loved that they both had different personalities, while also having a similar outlook that attracted Scythe Faraday to initiate both of them as scythe apprentices. Scythe Faraday became one of my favourite characters within this novel. He was honourable and thoughtful and had qualities that made him stand out as a fantastic scythe. In other news, Scythe Goddard was just an awful person. I completely despised him which I think was exactly what Shusterman wanted from readers. Is it weird that I kept picturing Scythe Goddard as Matt Bomer? These characters are fantastic and I absolutely loved them all.

The question of right & wrong. This novel definitely touches on the idea of making good decisions. Choosing between right and wrong. Following the rules or taking advantage of the privilege that you have been given. Nature versus nurture. This has always been an intriguing concept for me. How two different people make decisions based on the way they were raised…or in this case, based on the way that they were trained.

It felt real? Yes, this book took place in the future…but it doesn’t feel that far fetched at all. I can definitely see something like “The Cloud” becoming a sentient being. I can see human eventually achieving something like a longer lifespan. I can see how this might cause overpopulation issues which would bring forth the ides of “scythes” that would need to strategically fix this issue. While this story does feel futuristic, it seems quite possible.

What I Didn’t Like

I literally loved everything about this book. Can I get book 2 now please?

Scythe definitely did not disappoint and I am 100% on my way to becoming a huge Neal Shusterman fan. I have already acquired two more of his novels and I absolutely cannot wait to dive right in. READ THIS BOOK.

About The Author


When I was a kid, I wanted to be everything. A writer, an actor, a doctor, a rock star, an artist, an architect, and a film director. I had a teacher who said “You can’t do that ? you’ll be a jack of all trades and a master of none!” But I had it worked out: I’d be a jack of seven trades, and master of three. Then, in ninth grade I had an English teacher who really made a difference in my life. She saw my love of writing, and challenged me to write a story a month for extra credit. Since I desperately needed extra credit in her class, I took her up on the challenge, and by the end of ninth grade, I really began to feel like a writer. That’s when writing emerged above all my other interests as my driving passion. When I was sixteen, our family moved from Brooklyn, New York, to Mexico City, and I spent my last two years of High School there. Having an international experience changed my life, giving me a fresh perspective on the world, and a sense of confidence I might not have had otherwise.


Thank you for reading!


19 thoughts on “#Review: Scythe by Neal Shusterman

  1. Oh god I’ve been hearing so much about Neal Schusterman recently that it’s like I have to run out and grab this book. And this is the one I’ve heard the most about! It sounds as amazing as I thought it would be! So glad you enjoyed it. I need book one now!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. This is like the first book I plan on buying after the holidays are over! I’ve heard nothing but great things about it, and your review is another one that had only positive things to say! So glad you enjoyed it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh! I highly recommend that you do! It’s so great! I kept hearing good things too and I was afraid that it would be over-hyped, but it was super enjoyable and amazing! 😀


    1. Oh no! haha! I’m glad you found two books that you have added to your TBR though! They’re both amazing! I’ve actually had a pretty good reading month so far except for one book…that review will be out on Friday haha 😛

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I saw! I was like two 5 star reads with nothing you didn’t like about them, I mean, I must read them both asap! But I’m currently enjoying The Name of the Wind so I mean who knows when I’ll be done with that with all the work and blog stuff. 😦

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh man! I’ve seen Name Of The Wind! It’s massive! I don’t know if I’d ever be able to get through it haha! but if it’s as good as everyone makes it seem, I’m sure it could fly by as a fast read! Work and blogging definitely takes a toll on reading time and it can totally get overwhelming at times 😦

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I checked my “year in books” and it turns out the avarage lenght of the book I read is 428 pages, so I guess I’m used to it. I do read big books every now and then, like 1Q84 and The Goldfinch. 😂

        Liked by 1 person

      4. That’s amazing! I wish I could read more big books, but my attentions span is terrible. I think I read just a small handful of big books this year…the only two I can remember are The Fireman and A Little Life which were both really good! 😀 I haven’t read 1Q84 or The Goldfinch but I really hope I get around to them someday!

        Liked by 1 person

      5. You know, I don’t read comic books but I figure since I’m again raising my reading challenge goal I should start reading comic books or I won’t succeed with my challenge… I think.. I just don’t know what to do!

        Liked by 1 person

      6. They’re amazing! And super entertaining! I highly recommend adding a few to your TBR 🙂


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