Thou shalt kill.
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.
Scythe – Neal Shusterman
“Without the threat of suffering, we can’t experience true joy.”
This dystopian story was unlike any I’ve ever read. I mean, people can’t die and you have Scythes that can end your life?? And you can baiscally turn back time on your own life, and be 29 forever! I was immediately intrigued and really wanted to read the book.
The beginning of the story, which counts for every new world, was a bit confusing. It’s so similar to our world, except for.. well.. the dying part. The world is so advanced, has progressed so much that people don’t die a natural way. Not really anyway. It’s equally parts interesting and terrifying. I have probably never read a YA book that is so incredibly complex, but is still able to cater to a young adult audience.
The world is incredible. It’s basically two separate worlds, those of the people, and those of the Scythes. This was a bit hard for me to figure out, especially in the beginning, which is why I can absolutely understand if people don’t want to continue with the book. The pace is slower, but still kept me on the edge of my seat, which is why I kept going. I haven’t read dystopian stories in years and I was actually surprised with how much I loved this story.
Citra and Rowan were chosen to be apprentice of Scythe Faraday, to learn how to become a Scythe. It’s really interesting to see how both Citra and Rowan respond to what they learn, the different POVs are really interesting, especially later in the story. Citra is really intelligent, tries to figure out things she doesn’t understand, while Rowan is more impulsive, need (and gets) some serious character development. Their relationship is one of the best and one of the worst parts of the story. Some things just didn’t resonate with me and hurt the story in my opinion.
Scythe – Neal Shusterman
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.
The best part, without a doubt, is the way it makes you think about humanity. To live in a world where you can’t die like we do now, is that the end? Is that all we could have accomplished? Because isn’t that what everyone wants, to be immortal, to have enough time to see your children grow up, to work to live instead of living to work. But is it all we’ve hoped and prayed for? Isn’t humanity really wanting to keep progressing, and would living forever not defeat that purpose?
From the moment I read the synopsis, I already knew that it was going to be a book I’d like. But it really surprised me. The worldbuilding, the interactions not only between Citra and Rowan, but also between the different Scythes. It’s truly amazing and I can’t wait to read the next book. Definitely ordering it as soon as I can!