Book - 2016
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"In a world where disease has been eliminated, the only way to die is to be randomly killed ('gleaned') by professional reapers ('scythes'). Two teens must compete with each other to become a scythe--a position neither of them wants. The one who becomes a scythe must kill the one who doesn't"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2016.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9781442472426
Characteristics: 433 p. ; 22 cm.


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pacl_teens Jun 16, 2021

"Scythe by Neal Shusterman is the first book in the Arc of a Scythe series. It is a science fiction and dystopian trilogy that sets its stage in the future world. In this world, humans have conquered poverty, disease, war, and hunger. But most importantly, death. Humans have gained immortality and the only way to end life is by being "gleaned" or killed by people called the scythes. Scythes are ordered to do so due to the constantly growing population. Citra Terranova and Rowan Damisch were fairly normal teenagers until Scythe Faraday entered their life. The two teenagers are chosen to be Scythe Faraday's apprentices but neither want to be involved in such a job. However, when a contest is proposed that at the end of training, the apprentice who wins must kill the other apprentice, Citra and Rowan must unwillingly set out on a dangerous journey with their friendship and lives at stake.

Although when I first came across this book, I thought it would just be the same old dystopian series, I am very glad that I gave it a try. I truly enjoyed being able to get a much better understanding of the characters' emotions and thoughts from the journal that all scythes and apprentices needed to write in. By including many different concepts into the unique storyline, the book definitely made me think more deeply about humanity, life, morality, and reality. However, one downside of this book is that the pace of the story at the beginning of the book is very slow and can be a bit boring at times.

Overall, I would recommend this book to science fiction and dystopian lovers who want an edge of the seat read." -Kate, Grade 11

"Scythe is a great book to pick up if you are looking for dystopian and science fiction. The book tells the story of the human race in the future. Because of all the advancements of medical technology, humans have found out how to become immortal and heal quickly. There are a group of people called Scythes that control the population growth of the population growth. Citra and Rowan are two apprentices that are learning the ways of becoming a Scythe and are taught by Scythe Faraday. But, only one of them will become a scythe, and the two of them will have to compete.

Overall, I recommend this book to anyone that really likes science fiction, as the book talks about a lot of things related to technological advancements and immortality. I also love the conflicts and the plot twists that happened in the end. 5/5 stars" -Eric, Grade 9

May 21, 2021

Great Book! 4.5 stars. The only gripe i have is that it isn't that good for writing full-fledged symbolism essays.

May 06, 2021

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FPL_Jenni Apr 17, 2021

Scythe is an incredible start to a dystopian trilogy that brings up a lot of questions. How much is too much technology? Who calls the shots in a corrupt government? How can citizens fight against corruption? These are scarily familiar questions within our own day and age and it implores readers to think about it. In addition to this, Citra and Rowan are incredibly likeable and relatable characters, which makes the story that much more interesting. With its incredible world-building, timely topics and well rounded characters, it is no wonder Scythe was a 2017 ALA Michael L. Printz Award Honor Book as well as on the 2018 Texas Lonestar Reading List.

Apr 01, 2021

I find the concept of this futuristic world really interesting. I really liked the friendship and chemistry that developed between Citra and Rowan overtime. At times, I disliked the characters because they were a bit cringey. I really disliked Goddard because of his attitude and how he acted. I liked how wholesome Scythe Faraday and Curie were towards the kids. I would give this book 5 stars because I enjoyed reading it and it had a really good plot. I am glad it did not have a bad ending, which it could’ve had.

Mar 24, 2021

This is quite honestly one of my favorite books/trilogies I have ever read. The characters were great, their struggles were real, and the world was well-written. The series takes a turn you don't necessarily expect, but the story remains great through all three books. The plot is solid and the writing is awesome. I would 10/10 recommend it to everyone.

Feb 20, 2021

This is certainly one of the better YA dystopian novels I've read. The characters are all unique, interesting, and believable. Their struggles are meaningful, if a little unrealistic (dystopia, though). The pacing was really consistent, with genuine surprises in the plot along the way.

The sci-fi elements are not explained much, which is for the better because, as with most YA, they would not hold up well under close scrutiny (I'm talking mainly of the nanites. And the regeneration). I would not hesitate to recommend this book to a teen. It explores the complexity of what it means to be young, to be human, and to be mortal.

Feb 02, 2021

Good Book 📖

Jan 25, 2021

I absolutely loved this coming-of-age-type of book. The relationships that are constantly building and falling in this novel are so intriguing to be apart of. Especially Rowan and Citra's. From the moment they are chosen to be apprentices together, they are bound to be good friends. I would recommend this title if you prefer dystopian and captivating adventures.

LoganLib_Sheridan Jan 15, 2021

This is such a thought provoking book. There are so many interesting concepts discussed in this book and it is a very interesting (and potentially overly-optimistic) imagining of what the future could look like.

I like the idea of a benevolent computer taking care of humanity because people are just too corrupt and this is shown in the scythdom which the Thunderhead has no control over but which is in charge of delivering death to humanity.

The idea of a future where everyone can just live for as long as they like (until they are gleaned) is awesome. Everything is taken care of. You are given a job if you want one. You don't have to worry about money or food. The Thunderhead even provides an outlet for 'unsavouries' and tonists who think mortality was better and follow the teachings and ways of the 'mortal age'.

Despite all of these very big ideas and musings on morality throughout the book it didn't feel 'heavy'. It was engaging and action-packed.

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Feb 20, 2021

dstradling thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

Dec 16, 2020

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Sep 26, 2020

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Jul 01, 2019

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Add a Quote

My greatest wish for humanity is not for peace or comfort or joy. It is that we all still die a little inside every time we witness the death of another. For only the pain of empathy will keep us human. There's no version of God that can help us if we ever lose that.

"Remember, good intentions pave many roads. And not all of them lead to hell."

Apr 04, 2019

"Guilt is the idiot cousin of remorse."

Apr 04, 2019

"Outside the rain finally began to fall, surging in fits and starts. “I love the way it rains here,” he told her. “It reminds me that some forces of nature can never be entirely subdued. They are eternal, which is a far better thing to be than immortal."

Apr 04, 2019

"Everyone is guilty of something, and everyone still harbors a memory of childhood innocence, no matter how many layers of life wrap around it. Humanity is innocent; humanity is guilty, and both states are undeniably true."

Mar 08, 2019

"We become settled in the inconsequential drudgery of our lives, until suddenly we look at ourselves in the mirror and see a face we barely recognize begging us to turn a corner and be young again"

Sep 06, 2018

“Well, she could learn self control tomorrow. Today she wanted pizza.”

JCLChrisK Nov 30, 2017

No one rages against the system anymore. At most, they just glare at it a bit.

Apr 26, 2017

She wanted to believe she wasn’t capable of it. She desperately wanted to believe she wasn’t Scythe material. It was the first time in her life that she aspired to fail.


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Jan 16, 2020

In a world where we take life for granted behind computer screens and instagram accounts Scythe has come along and reminded us that life is out here waiting to happen.

Imagine a society where if you put yourself at risk of death an appointed Scythe gleans you. This is all done to control overpopulation. Sounds to me like insurance companies except they don't kill you they just up your payment. Natural death is old school and in this post-mortal age two friends are chosen to be Scythes. The Scythenom appoints them as apprentice scythes until their final test: to glean each other. Who will win?

I enjoyed reading this book because damn can you imagine? The advanced technology used in the story seems like it could really happen. Not the gleanings of course but the artificial intelligence, the way humans deal with disease. It really made me wonder.

Dec 21, 2018

fairly good sci-fi about these people who are the designated gleaners of society, they choose who and how to lessen the population, and of course the corruption that occurs in a society where someone is all powerful over everyone else, and of course the good guys who always follow the rules

Apr 26, 2017

It has been three hundred years since humanity turned the corner, leaving behind the Age of Mortality. With the arrival of infinite computing power, a benevolent AI known as the Thunderhead emerged to rule this new deathless society. But although accidental death is a thing of the past, humanity still lives on a single finite planet, and so population growth must be limited. This task was deemed to require a human conscience, not to be entrusted to a computer, and so the Scythedom was born. Citra and Rowan have been selected to apprentice to Scythe Faraday, a job that neither of them wants. But there is corruption at the heart of Scythedom, and the Thunderhead is powerless to intervene. Reform must come from within.


Add Notices
Mar 14, 2020

Violence: There is a lot of death.

Mar 14, 2020

Sexual Content: People mention sleeping together.

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