Continue below to read my review of the book and be sure to check out this link for - [TURN THE PAGE TOURS]! Thank you to Turn the Page Tours, Simon & Schuster, and Neal Shusterman for the copy gifted for this tour!
Gleanings: Stories from the Arc of the Scythe
(Arc of the Scythe Series)
Publisher: Simon & Shuster
Pub Date: Nov. 8th, 2022
Genres: YA Fantasy, YA Dystopian
The New York Times bestselling Arc of the Scythe series continues with thrilling stories that span the timeline. Storylines continue. Origin stories are revealed. And new Scythes emerge!
There are still countless tales of the Scythedom to tell. Centuries passed between the Thunderhead cradling humanity and Scythe Goddard trying to turn it upside down. For years humans lived in a world without hunger, disease, or death with Scythes as the living instruments of population control.
Neal Shusterman—along with collaborators David Yoon, Jarrod Shusterman, Sofía Lapuente, Michael H. Payne, Michelle Knowlden, and Joelle Shusterman—returns to the world throughout the timeline of the Arc of a Scythe series. Discover secrets and histories of characters you’ve followed for three volumes and meet new heroes, new foes, and some figures in between.
Gleanings shows just how expansive, terrifying, and thrilling the world that began with the Printz Honor–winning Scythe truly is.
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The Arc of the Scythe series has been on my TBR list for some time, and never have I been more sorry that I still haven't read the rest of the books than I am now.
Wow, this set of stories from the world of the Scythedom is a stunner.
Rife with cautionary tales, as well as political, social, and economical parallels to issues already plaguing society, it's difficult to imagine Shusterman didn't intend to place some eye-opening commentary in the hands of the readers. I find this is often the case with the more cerebral fantasy and science fiction authors and the result is a more unnerving dystopia than one might otherwise experience.
This particular addition to the series is made up by a variety of stories that follow different Scythes, touching significant moments in their lives. For some, their origin may be revealed, while for others.. we get a glimpse of their comeuppance. Herein lies one of my favorites, but that's in no way to diminish any of the others.
Gleanings is dark and sometimes surprising. Shusterman's Scythes are both beautiful and terrible, sometimes all at once, and I can't wait to go back and read the rest of the series. His writing is elegantly crafted, complex enough to really hook me, and his stories are bold. He's unafraid to paint his stories brightly with discomforting truths, yet creative enough to allow the reader just enough breathing room so they're not simply overwhelmed with the possibilities of the future.
The lines between realistic outcomes and fantasy are blurred expertly and I couldn't recommend this series more highly.
About the Author:
Neal Shusterman is the New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty award-winning books for children, teens, and adults, including Dry, Roxy, the Unwind dystology, the Skinjacker trilogy, Downsiders, and Challenger Deep, which won the National Book Award.
Scythe, the first book in his series, Arc of a Scythe, is a Michael L. Printz Honor Book.
Neal has earned the respect and recognition of the library community; three of his books have been ALA Best Books for Young Adults and all of his books have been consistently well-reviewed.
He's a popular speaker on the IRA/NCTE circuit, and at schools all over the country. He also writes screenplays for motion pictures and television shows.
Neal is the father of four, all of whom are talented writers and artists themselves.
Continue below to read my review of the book and be sure to check out this link for -
[TURN THE PAGE TOURS]! Thank you to Turn the Page Tours, Ingram, and Heleen Davies for the copy gifted for this tour!
The Bone Thief's Tale
(Bone Thief Saga Book One)
Pub Date: Oct. 14th, 2022
Genres: Fantasy, Romance
Introducing a newly reimagined tale written in the vein of The Little Mermaid meeting Hades and Persephone.
Bound to steal her queen magical bones, thief Lynne knows only one mistake equals death. And yet, she dreams of living in the forbidden world upon the surface, hating every minute in the Underworld. When she secretly develops a crush on a human, she loses a bone in his realm and has no choice but to strike a deal with the only one who could help—an evil witch. To save her life, she must earn the man’s love and bring back the bone in 99 days.
Rio Renero is a notorious gang leader in Chicago and his life has been set to one purpose—to get back at his enemies. With a mysterious, beautiful girl showing up on his doorstep, he sees the solution to his machinations. She offers him a chance at a deadly heist that could destroy all his enemies. In return, he must help her steal a book. What a cinch.
As Lynne and Rio dig deep into a dark net of politics, magic and passion, they need to learn to trust each other.
Not so easy, considering they’re not quite sure whether to kiss or kill each other.
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If you're like me, the cover alone was a head-turner. I'm also a huge fan of both The Little Mermaid and the Hades and Persephone stories, so I'm always excited by new tales woven from either of them. Something that is a bit of a mix? I knew I had to read.
What it did well:
Conceptually, it conveyed The Little Mermaid theme in more of a classic mythology setting, while modernizing the Hades and Persephone angle. I enjoyed the change-up between the two in that way.
The magic system at its base is also really interesting. I love the idea of the way it lingers, leaving its mark, so to speak. That's all I can say though without ruining the details for you.
There are also a couple of cute supporting characters, as would be expected for the sort of Ariel idea and I love the twist on her collection.
What could be better:
Though it's a YA title, the genre is more about the age of the characters, but lately I'm seeing a lot of 'young writing' and that's the case here.
Both the prose and the characters could use a real flex of development. This seems to be Davies' first book and as that it makes sense. The idea is bold and simply needs a more seasoned hand to live up to its potential. I'd love to see her return to it and rework the manuscript once she has a few more books under her belt.
I would have loved to swoon for Rio and cheer for Lynne. I think I could have even, with a bit more depth throughout.
All in all, if you're looking for a quick read and love an underdog story, you might give this one a try.