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Scythe by Neal Shusterman

Friday, September 2, 2016
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.

Goodreads Summary

I can't imagine a world where disease is eliminated and I honestly (unpopular opinion, but I know my biology) don't think that that would be a good thing. However, as a plot in a book, I was hooked. Citra and Rowan are in training to be scythe's apprentices; eventually, they will kill those who are supposed to be "gleaned."  Although neither knows if they actually want the job, to lose is to to die.  

The plot was fast-paced and detailed. I loved the idea behind the book. Shusterman has a wonderful imagination; the characters were well-developed and the reader will find he/she cares for both of the characters and doesn't want either to fail in his/her task. I personally preferred Citra. She's a little more prickly and not quite as effusive as Rowan's character, but I thought she was thoughtful and intelligent. I loved the moral issues and was glad that the author did not get bogged down with them. Deciding who should die to stretch resources and ensure there is enough would be a monumental task that I would not want to complete. I did like how the author handled the morality and ethics behind scything. It was fascinating to read and I finished the book within a week. This book is highly recommended to young adult/teen readers.

4 Stars

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