Scythe by Neal Shusterman

So Scythe was our September book club pick of the month but because of it’s overwhelming popularity and our busy schedules it was next to impossible to get from the library. So know it is our October book club pick, we bumped our previous October’s out and into 2020. Scythe is the first book young adult dystopian trilogy about a world that has conquered all medical problems even death, to maintain the ongoing population there are Scythes, selected and trained, to “glean” those in their region based on statistics of time passed. I picked this book because I had heard just never-ending hype for this book and series. I really wanted to read it with my mom and sister who hadn’t heard any of the hype and see what they thought.

Personally this year I had a lot of books that ended up being 4 stars simply because of the hype surrounding it and it ended up falling short. Scythe was not one of these books and when I started I truly thought it might be. I was prepared to because truthfully in the first 20% I wasn’t ready and it was everything I had heard. We had two pretty typical teens that were perfectly diametric to each other. An unpleasant situation that neither wanted to be but both wanted to win. It felt familiar.

However, the plot was outstanding. I was surprised at all the twists and there were plot points that I thought would be in book three that came in the first 200 pages. It took very conventional devices and characters and pushed them and switch things up in ways that at least I had seen before.

What I loved was the world building: the way humanity acts when they will never really be at risk, the way different scythes approach their work and cope with their job. It was so well done and so engaging for every character.

What I didn’t like was there were a couple romantic relationships that felt a little unnecessary and out of the blue.

Trigger warnings: death, mass murder, self harm, suicide.

Recommended: For me it was five stars. I think if you miss dystopian or like science-fiction at all you will really enjoy this book.

 

What is professional anyways?

So I’m pretty sure the base term for professional is someone who is compensated for their work/services. And like I get in and I feel like a lot of high school and college and internships and summer jobs is preparing you/me to be a professional working adult. Now that I am a professional working adult I feel like every job has gotten less “professional”.

For example. I have been in my current position for 6 months (which is the longest full-time formal/not my own boss job I’ve ever had). It is pretty laid back because a lot of people work from home or remotely. Often I am by myself in my office that is on the opposite ends of one of the campuses. Work dress is casual and pretty much just public school rules: nothing dirty, nothing torn, nothing with drugs or alcohol, and nothing political. It’s pretty easy to follow and when I work from home and don’t have Zoom calls I can get away with staying in pajamas. For formal events there is a very strict dress code but those are few and far between we are coming up on number 2 in almost 7 months.

However, recently I have had a lot of external meetings for some cool upcoming projects. A couple weeks ago I was at the statehouse. Which was nice and beautiful and hectic. But there were staffers in jeans! JEANS! I couldn’t believe it. I wasn’t even in a full suit or anything, but compared to a lot of the people I felt overdressed. My meeting was with some people who work full time for the statehouse for a caucus and the office of education and outreach, to be honest I was pretty nervous. Then during the meeting someone agreed with me and instead of saying so raised their fist to receive a fist bump. I know this because when I didn’t realize it and bump them they asked me to. Then at my meeting at Simmons University. The dress was a little more casual which I had expected, but like someone cursed and it was very different. Different than previous meetings I had had and different than what I had been educated to expect.

None of these things were you know, bad or wrong inherently. But it has left me feeling confused. Confused about what is expected of me as a young professional. Confused about what the real professional landscape is actually going to look like moving forward for me.

Anyway more new stuff to figure out. Hooray! Wish me luck.

Blog Tour: Truthwitch Book Tag

Welcome to today’s blog tour post for the Witchlands series by Susan Dennard! The new hardcover box set came out yesterday, October 8th, and features brand-new, refreshed covers for the first two books and a full cover map posters. Now if you don’t know I love the Witchlands series (also, hi and welcome!). It is full of elemental magic, friendship, angsty romance, and a world on the brink of war as a 20-year truce is about to come to an end.

So today in honor of the boxset release I am doing the Truthwitch Book Tag created by Insidemylibrarymind. It’s such a fun tag and will give you a small glimpse at all the moving parts and I get to talk about more books I like!

Safiya – A character that grew on you

 For this I have to go with Mirabella from the Three Dark Crowns series by Kendare Blake. It was just so easy to root for Katherine and Arsinoe but she was a slow burn. She was too perfect and tried to hard and cared in weird ways. But eventually I was at the point where I didn’t want her to die.Three Dark crowns

Iseult – A character that you relate to the most

the school for good and evil Besides Isuelt?! I don’t know that there is a way to answer this question without it being a brag. I think a character that I love and want to be consider like (at like peak me time) 8a6d9db8-dca9-42fd-9484-2c8491037332-1417-00000203493c67d0is Agatha from the School of Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

Nubrevna – Favorite Setting

There are so many good options for this but I am going to go with Tamora Pierce’s Tortall. I have spent 5 book series there and I never tire of it. There is so much too explore and I like the magic and the gods and Pounce.

Aeduan – Favorite Anti-Hero

Shockingly I am not a huge fan of the anti-hero despite my deep love for Bae-duan. Maybe I will like more in the future but for now I am going with the other one I know well and like despite EVERYTHING which is the Vampire Lestat from Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles.

the vampire lestate

Merik Nihar – A loyal character

I feel like it is too easy to go with Ron Weasley for this one but I am going to go with another classic best friend and choose Grover Underwood from Percy Jackson and thelightning thief Olympians by Rick Riordan. If I need to explain this you need to go reread the books. 

Safi & Iseult – Favorite Female Friendship

Rosie and Peony from Spindle’s End were probably the first and still one of the best female friendships I have read. Their deep love and support for each other despite their differences is so touching. Plus I am a sucker for like the very spindles engirly feminine and grunge dynamics especially in a positive relationship.

Threads that Bind – Favorite Book Relationship

Ummm the relationship in Bloodwitch… but for real. I think my other answer for this question would be Elisa’s relationship in Crown of Embers and the Bitter Kingdom by Rae Carson. It is so swoon worthy and angsty and they love each other so freaking much it hurts. Hopefully we get more sweet scenes with them in the upcoming Empire of Dreams.

crown of embers

The Puppeteer – Favorite Villan

 Actually very similar to the idea of the Puppeteer. I am going with the Fates from Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly. This was one of my favorite books this year and it was spurred on by the ongoing contest between the personifications of Fate and Chance, which I absolutely loved.

stepsister.jpg

The Mountain Bat – Favorite Animal/Creature

Blink from Diadem: Worlds of Magic by John Peel. He is a red panda familiar to a powerful sorceress who is an ally to our main trio. He can talk and he is sassy and sleepy and never wants to do work. I desperately wanted him when reading the e61da458-996f-40bc-a3ba-936f52eb759e-6747-000007c509ac4800books when I was like 9 and still kinda do.

Vaness – Most Intimidating Character

Intimidating is such a hard feeling to identify from a character cause it’s scythenot the most powerful or scariest, just the most intimidating. Which is definitely a cool dynamic that Safi experiences with Vaness. I am going with Scythe Curie from the Arc of the Scythe series by Neal Schustermen. She is so important and so impenetrable, especially when we first meet her. So it feels like an obvious choice.

So again read the Witchlands it is sooo worth it! And buy the full boxset of the first three books in the series with revamped covers by Cliff Nielsen and a full color map of the Witchlands from Jessica Khoury.

If you are interested you can purchase the boxset at any of these locations: