Book - 2016
Average Rating:
Rate this:
""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.
ISBN: 9781442472426
Characteristics: 433 pages ;,22 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Jun 17, 2019

Really good book and I can't wait till the other one comes in.
Scythe is a lot like hunger games in many ways, including the future setting and Citra and Rowan's forbidden love. I wasn't sure at first but this really actually is very good. I recommend it to readers 11+.
I must add that the feminist side in me is a little annoyed by how every male author has the characters fall in love. I mean, we get that romance is a heavy plot in most books but I kinda wish we could find some non romance action books out there.

Jun 15, 2019

It is a great book and I think that it is for 12-above.

Jun 14, 2019

I loved this book so much. I would recommend it to anyone who loves action, a bit of romance, and many plot twists. One of my favorite books ever!!!!!!! I could definitely connect with Citra, seeing much of myself in her, and Rowan was a great main character also. Definitely a must read.

May 26, 2019

This was a really good read. I found it hard to put it down! I like utopian/dystopian novels, so this was really my jam. Looking forward to the second book in the series.

May 05, 2019

Engaging, surprising, and excellently constructed.

Apr 23, 2019

scythe has a serious problem and its not the characters, they are well written and highly individual. the problem for any hard sci-fi world lover is that this world makes NO SENSE. in a planet earth with technology advanced centuries beyond what we have now they havn't even colonized then Moon or MARS yet. thy tried one time and gave up! that is very hard to swallow in a world full of of bored immortal humans. they have literally nothing else to do. also instead of handling population issues by simply expanding into the solar system what do they do? SCYTHES. that's what this world does. it makes no sense.

Apr 20, 2019

Very engaging, creative, and well thought-out book.

JCLMeganK Mar 03, 2019

In this dystopian society, an AI cloud controls the world, humans have become immortal, and a group of people called Scythes dole out death to the citizens. Two teenagers,Citra and Rowan, examine the concepts of life, death and morality through their experiences as Scythe apprentices. While the premise seems morbid, this book is fascinating in the way it examines our current society and the idea of immortality. Citra and Rowan were interesting characters, and their personalities helped to inject humor into the story. While I cannot say too much without spoiling the story, I highly recommend this book to listen to or read.

PimaLib_ChristineR Feb 26, 2019

Douglas Adams once wrote of Wowbagger the Infinitely Prolonged: "In the end, it was the Sunday afternoons he couldn’t cope with, and that terrible listlessness that starts to set in about 2:55, when you know you’ve taken all the baths that you can usefully take that day, that however hard you stare at any given paragraph in the newspaper you will never actually read it, or use the revolutionary new pruning technique it describes, and that as you stare at the clock the hands will move relentlessly on to four o’clock, and you will enter the long dark teatime of the soul." - Life, the Universe and Everything.

Wowbagger went on to his immortal life's work of insulting everyone in the universe, in alphabetical order. Shusterman takes his future humans in a slightly different direction, but one that still dwells on the question of creating a valuable life for an entire race that has entered the "long dark teatime of the soul." Citra and Rowan are chosen to become apprentice Scythes, those few humans who are not only above the law, but are the only ones who can make someone permanently die. In a bid to avoid overcrowding on earth, Scythes are charged with creating a permanent death for people who would otherwise live forever. Shusterman's future earth has people with regular jobs, regular families and regular schools, but some people "splat" for fun (throw themselves off tall buildings), and family dynamics often involve dealing with a grandmother who may look your own age, irritating your mother.

Shusterman has combined a future utopian/dystopian novel containing excellent world building and strong characterization, with an intriguing mystery, and a helping of existential crisis. I would recommend this far beyond the YA crowd, to anyone who loves a great book with an original idea.

Feb 24, 2019

gud book, suggest it if you like fantasy and utopian fiction.

Cookies taste good

View All Comments

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability
Jun 14, 2019

violet_leopard_530 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Dec 29, 2018

CobraDragon thinks this title is suitable for 9 years and over

Dec 17, 2018

FunJ11 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Dec 13, 2018

RaptorMouse thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Sep 26, 2018

burgundy_wren_15 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

May 17, 2018

mikeguylol thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

LoganLib_Kirra Feb 04, 2018

LoganLib_Kirra thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Apr 06, 2017

sleepybookworm thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

Jan 22, 2017

white_dove_454 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Jan 15, 2017

black_pony_62 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over


Add a Quote
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.


Add a Summary
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

There are no notices for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at Library

To Top