Author: Neal Shusterman
Publisher: Simon and Schuster BFYR
Release Date: November 22, 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.
We start out in this book with Citra and her family hosting a Scythe for dinner--the Honorable Scythe Faraday (because they all take names after famous scientists and philosophers). He knocks on their door, and everyone is so tense, afraid he's going to glean someone, which is a fancy way of saying he will kill them. Because this is what Scythes do: kill people to keep the population under control. After all, when your society has perfected the art of resetting lives to a younger age and gotten rid of disease as well as bringing people back from the dead, the world gets over crowded fast.
Rowan and Citra are both chosen by Scythe Faraday to be his apprentice because of certain qualities they exuded when he first met them. But only one will get to be a Scythe. The other will have to go back to his or her normal life when everything is over.
Of course, the competition between the two gets fierce, and the senior Scythes mess with Faraday's training. Rowan and Citra slowly become protective of each other and try to thwart the Scythes' attempts to make them hurt each other.
So. I really liked some things about this book. The plot was really interesting, and it's the first in a new series, so I'm definitely wanting to read the next book. Rowan was a great character, and Citra wasn't bad either. I loved how Rowan and Citra were so protective of each other to the point of failing their trials to try and make the other one succeed. But the one thing I just didn't buy was the romance between the two. I could see feelings developing between them, but not really to the point that they supposedly did.
Still, I really liked the book, and I will definitely be reading the next one.
As I said, I liked it. I didn't love it, but if you are really into science fiction and cool futures you should definitely give this one a shot.
Note: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.