'Scythe' book review

Title: Scythe

Author: Neal Shusterman

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

Format/Pages: Hardback, 435

Release Date: November 22nd, 2016

Genre: YA Dystopian

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

~ Goodreads Synopsis ~

A world with no hunger, no disease, no war, no misery. Humanity has conquered all those things, and has even conquered death. Now scythes are the only ones who can end life—and they are commanded to do so, in order to keep the size of the population under control.

Citra and Rowan are chosen to apprentice to a scythe—a role that neither wants. These teens must master the “art” of taking life, knowing that the consequence of failure could mean losing their own.

~ ~ ~ ~

Hello everyone!

This is a book I didn’t really know how to rate because I feel like the first half of the book could have one rating, like 2.75 stars, and the second half of the book could have a higher rating, like 4, so I’m going with 3.5 lol. Like most books out there, it doesn’t really get into the action until about halfway, and that is when the stakes truly raise and you can’t put the book down.

The plot itself is very interesting with the way humans have advanced so that death is nearly nonexistent, and the Scythedom is very intricate and well thought out. It isn’t until the middle that I really was hooked though. Up until something actually big happened about three-quarters in did I decide that this book needed more stars. It was slow, yes, but I also just felt like why should I care? It was hard to see a real direction that the story was going to take, which is great for most books, but didn’t suit this one too well at first. But when the book picked up, it was amazing with so many twists! It was dangerous and risky and unpredictable.

As for the characters, they also felt pretty dull and two-dimensional until that three-quarter point as well. I can tell the next book will be better since it is more established now, and I really look forward to what the characters have to offer in Thunderhead. I actually didn’t like Citra at first, I found her selfish and a little narrow minded, but goes through well-needed character development. Rowan goes through this, also, and the difference between both characters in the beginning and the end is enormous. You can barely see them as the same people.

Rowan was, by far, my favorite character of the book because he was the most complicated and conflicted, and he was probably the most human. His choices may be slightly unfavorable, especially when it comes to Citra, but it’s leads to an amazing story.

Citra’s family also makes it into the book, and they were actually loving parents! That is so rare in a book to have both living parents and loving parents! We need more of this in YA because not every family is broken and resentful. Her parents were still selfish, which may be where Citra got it, but they were reasonably selfish – as in it is understandable why they were how they were.

Romance is nearly never involved in the book, and when it is, it is very limited. It suits this book and the circumstances, but you all know me, I’m looking for the romance lol.

In all, it was an entertaining book that makes you think about the world and where it’s heading. I don’t really have too much to say, so this isn’t a very good review, but I do hope it helped in some way! Despite it’s shortcomings, I would still recommend this book if only for the philosophical meaning.

Let me know down below what you thought of Scythe, or if you plan to read it!

Thanks for reading!


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