Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Varun Recommends 'Scythe' by Neal Shusterman

Scythe by Neal Shusterman

Recently I read the book Scythe by Neal Shusterman. In the book, there are two teens, Rowan and Citra. They live in a world where humanity has conquered death. As a means of population control, specially chosen men and women called scythes carry out random acts of murder, known as gleaning in the post-immortality world. The only way to truly die without a scythe gleaning you is to be burnt alive. A scythe known as Faraday, visits Citra’s home. He also visits Rowan, and suggests they both train to become scythes. They both accept with some reluctance and begin their training. During it, however, tragedy strikes and the two are forced into very different paths.

Overall, I think the book had some very strong parts and some not so strong parts. One thing I found that did annoy me was the relative predictability of the plot. Compared to some more spontaneous books, Scythe was definitely much easier to guess what would happen next. Also, a very large part of the book was covering the training of Rowan and Citra, and while I do agree it is important to show that they were training, and that they were working to become good scythes, I think too much of the book was more a training montage than filled with action scenes.

However, the book had many great things about it as well. The most interesting part about it would have to be the concept that the book explored. The concept of a post-immortality Earth, where people cannot die, where the act of killing is a necessity, and must be done by someone is a very chilling, yet interesting one. Another thing I really liked about the book was the character development and change over the book. We learned lots about all the characters from their actions, from Citra’s stubbornness, to Rowan’s easygoingness. Also, many of the characters changed across the book, them, and watching that development is very interesting.
especially the two main characters. Citra went from a cold, stubborn person to a much nicer, understanding person. And Rowan went from a joke-cracking, grinning person, to a much sadder, colder person. Their differing paths change

Overall I would probably give the book 3 out of 5 stars. While its concept and characters were very creative and interesting, the simple plot and lack of high-intensity thriller scenes made it lose two stars. I would, however, still recommend it to read, as even though it is a longer book, I think it is definitely one to read if you are a fan of dystopian, future books. It has similar themes to The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, so fans of that book will enjoy this one as well.

The first review written by teen volunteer, Varun! Thank you and welcome, Varun!

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