Recommended Reading: Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman

As a writer that deals mainly in series work, I can tell you how hard it is to write a second book in a narrative. You have the pressure of not only living up to the original but not repeating yourself…without losing all the things that made readers love the first book. That’s why so many book and film sequels suck — because getting that mix right is a delicate thing.

I adored Scythe and genuinely feel it’s one of the best books I’ve read in years. It had a great climax, as well… so how do I feel that Shusterman did in terms of a follow-up?

Not bad. Not bad at all.

It’s not as clever as the first book… and some of the resurrections and reveals in this one strain credulity. But the main characters are once again written with panache and I continue to care greatly about them.

The ending of this one has a real The Empire Strikes Back feel to it in that things seem pretty dark but I’m sure that’s just setting things up for the third book. This continues to be a very vibrant world with tons of potential, not only for new stories to be told in prose but in television and even roleplaying games.

Highly recommended!

 

Recommended Reading: Scythe by Neal Shusterman

Just finished reading this one and I have to say that I loved it! Set in a future where death has been eradicated, the world’s population is kept at a safe level by the workings of a group of men and women known as Scythes. In this story, we get to know two young people – Rowan and Citra — as they are taken on a journey of apprenticeship to Scythe Faraday. There are intrigues aplenty, with some Scythes feeling that the old ways have become too stagnant… they desire change and it’s a change that might put the world’s utopian status at grave risk.

The action is top-notch but it’s the characters and concepts that make the story one that I’ll remember for a long time. It’s so good that I’m not sure that I’d want to see a movie made of it — they’d simply have to leave too much great stuff out! I could see it making one hell of a television miniseries, though. Give this thing about 8-10 hours to breathe and I think it could be captivating.

I highly recommend that you seek this one out!