Author: Neal Shusterman
Release Date: November 22nd, 2016
Sequel, series or stand-alone? first in the Arc Of Scythe trilogy
Previous book: –
Following book: Thunderhead
Main characters: Rowan Damish, Scythe Faraday, Scythe Goddard, Citra Terranova.
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
“Scythe” the first book in The Arc Of Scythe trilogy, tells us the story of a place where everything is perfect: no more poverty, no more crime, no pollution and overall, no more death. Everything is ruled by a giant artificial intelligence called the Thunderhead, which, unlike most speculations about the future, has no bad intentions against humanity. Therefore, the world is perfect and people are immortal to enjoy it as long as they please. However, after all the changes the World overcame, there´s still an issue that the Thunderhead can´t solve: overpopulation.
In order to solve that problem, the Scythes exist. They are people who are in charge of “gleaning” a certain amount of humans each year. They do it as passionately as they can and everyone respects them, but what happens when the system corrupts?
Meanwhile, we follow the lives of two kids, Rowan Damish and Citra Terranova who are picked by Scythe Faraday as apprentices to become future scythes, but only one of them will have the position, the other will go home. Both teens dread the job, so, they try their best at their worst. However, when the competition turns into a life or death situation, they will have to learn what it means to be a life taker and how to live with that fact.
Personally, it was a pretty enjoyable book for me and exploring the utopia where Citra and Rowan live was a pretty interesting experience. However, the book wasn´t thrilling at all, by being the first in a series, I understand that it must explain tons of things to the readers and introduce a lot of complex characters but I think it missed some action. And also, I didn´t care much for the main characters (as for this, I am in fact, a minority because most readers love Citra and Rowan.)
Mostly, I loved how the author explored the most difficult ethical dilemmas and how crucial death is even if we don´t want it, things must come to an end. Finally, the most important lesson that this book taught me is that unless you are a flawless machine, condensing too much power in the same person is dangerous, because we humans make mistakes and we can be corrupted.
So far, I´m halfway the second book and I´m liking it. Hope you enjoy your read.