Cover Image: Gleanings


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Member Reviews


I tend to be someone who doesn’t normally enjoy short story behind apps, or even novellas. I find there is not enough time to fully develop a storyline that is enjoyable. But Neal Shusterman did it in this short story bind up.

Even though it has been so long, since I’ve read the original trilogy, I still found it easy to remember specific characters when their short stories came up. It was always interesting, because every short story that started, I would immediately think of this one’s going to be boring and then halfway through the story I was hooked and cannot wait to read it to the end. Of course, throughout this bind up, I have many favorites, but each one I enjoyed for a different reason. I think there was only one or two stories that I didn’t like as many as the others but considering how big this book is, it was terribly enjoyable. 

If you love the Scythe trilogy and want to get back into it I highly recommend reading this short story bind up. It made me want to pick up the original trilogy all over again, and it reminded me how much I miss this world that Neal Shusterman had created.

I also highly recommend the audiobook. They use a variety of narrators, including Neal Schusterman himself, and they all do a phenomenal job!
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If you are looking for a sequel to the amazing Scythe series, this is not it. While I understood that this was not a sequel, I was hopeful that the book would add more context to the excellent story told in the trilogy. Instead, what I found was a series of unconnected mini-stories of various Scythes. For the most part, the Scythe’s written about weren’t even mentioned in the original series and while some of these small anecdotes did relate to the original story line, many of them did not. Very disappointing.
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A range of different stories that allows readers to take a deep dive into small areas of the world created in Scythe. Several stand out, particularly the origin stories.
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Neal Shusterman has done it again! The Arc of Scythe is so rich and interesting. This anthology of stories taking place before, after and during the original trilogy is an absolute delight.

I never expected this new addition of stories and insights into the world but it has gotten me to revisit the Scythe world again. What a wonderfully crafted dystopian science-fiction story and this is a great opportunity for readers to revisit that world. 

As an anthology there are always going to be some stories that are stronger overall or more preferred by the reader. I feel that anyone going into this thinking there will be new revelations will feel disappointed. However, this is a wonderful read to get familiar with the world again and see it from the perspective of new side characters or tidbits on areas where the main characters in the trilogy did not go.

Overall, a great opportunity to revisit the Arc of Scythe series and get some new information on the world-building aspects of Scythe and learn a bit more about that society.

Thank you so much to Simon & Schuster Canada and Netgalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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I received a physical advanced copy of this book, and will be basing my review on that. I did not know that I had receieved a digital copy, and it was archieved before I could compare the two.
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This anthology was phenomenal. Each short story was creative beyond belief, answering a multitude of questions the main trilogy left me with regarding the fascinating system of scythes and the Thunderhead.

The greatest stories from Gleanings were those that revisited characters who already appeared in Arc of a Scythe, villains and fan-favourites alike. The particular story I adored the most was easily A Martian Minute, partially because space operas are my favourite ultra-specific subgenre, but more importantly because of how insane the world-building and plot was for such a brief tale. The concept of interplanetary colonists preparing Mars for future inhabitants has certainly been done before, though I knew the addition of the Thunderhead would shake things up drastically. Goddard was a downright malicious villain for 3 books, so it was awesome to finally experience his hardcore origin story through a glimpse of his youth in space, of all places.

Another favourite of mine was Anastasia’s Shadow, following scythe Anastasia’s brother Ben in between harrowing events of the series. While this was definitely one of the more tame stories in this collection, the character-driven reader in me was eager to learn about the younger brother who (from what I remember) didn’t have much of a presence in the trilogy. It made me unbelievably happy to see him fight for love, though his circumstances certainly kept me on my toes throughout.

There were a few stories that I thought were just okay, though the majority more than made up for any falters. This anthology was a lot of mindless fun, while also managing to include a number of really impactful messages. I loved gushing about the crazy twists to my sister and best friend. This anthology was unexpected, but so worth it for Arc of a Scythe fans!!
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Some stories carry on with a character’s story, while others share how a character came to be. They all draw you back into the lives of Scythes. Loved the stories.
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Happy Release Day!

Gleanings is a short story collection set in the same world as the Arc of a Scythe trilogy and it does a fantastic job of pulling you back into that world. It includes stories that take place before, during and after the events of the original trilogy through a couple of familiar POVs (though mostly through fresh ones from characters that were on the periphery of the story in the original series). It showcases the origin story of one key character and the basis for a continuation story of a different fan favourite character. It requires that the reader already have knowledge of the society and events within all 3 of the original novels so I would definitely recommend only reading it after you've read the core series!

Going into this collection, I was very hopeful that we would get to see some expansion of the world building or lore (specifically in regards to how the Thunderhead or society functioned), some new material about the key characters of the series centered around their plot (regardless of the timeline) as well as some new ethical or philosophical issues to ponder (true to Shusterman's style in Scythe) however this collection really didn't deliver on any of those aspects for me personally and so was a disappointment while simultaneously being a comforting read. It's really more focused on pulling you back into an already familiar world through mostly fresh perspectives and giving you glimpses into things that could have been or were happening elsewhere in the world. I was really hoping for some earth shattering secrets and reveals pertaining to the original trilogy but instead got some cameos and side character development. It was fine and I enjoyed the writing but it just was not what I was looking for.

As with most collections, I enjoyed certain stories more than others and definitely felt that this collection had it's ups and downs. I wish that some of the better stories had been extended and fleshed out more (especially the origin story; it could have used more nuance for sure) and that some of the others not really related to the events or characters of the original trilogy were just cut. 

Here's my ranking of all the stories from best to not so great:
-A Martian Minute 
-Unsavory Row 
-A Dark Curtain Rises 
-Meet Cute and Die 
-Anastasia's Shadow 
-The Mortal Canvas 
-Never Work With Animals (CW for Animal Cruelty/Animal Death) 
-A Death of Many Colors 
-The First Swing 
-The Persistence of Memory 
-Perchance to Glean 

Thank you so much to Simon & Schuster Canada and Netgalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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Love love love, just waiting for my preordered finished copy to arrive!! We chose this as our stores teen book club selection for December, so excited to pick all of our members brains!
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A return to the world of Scythe! This is a collection of glimpses through the timeline of the Scythe series, but told from fresh, new, unique perspectives. If you loved the series, you’ll love getting to see the world building expanded even more.
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Thank you to Simon and Schuster Canada for sending me an Advanced Readers copy of Gleanings. 

If you read the Arc of a Scythe Trilogy then you will absolutely love this collection of short stories. Each one was very unique and I think they all added more depth and history to the pre-existing world. It reminded me a lot of the original trilogy so if you are looking for something like the original books this should definitely be your next read. 

Overall I really enjoyed this book and I will continue to recommend the original trilogy and this short story collection; but there were a couple things about it that irked me. One being the AI art thing (so minor in the grand scheme of the story, and maybe I’m just unreasonably annoyed by it but it’s worth mentioning that I despise AI art lol. It’s art theft and that’s garbage and shouldn’t be glorified). The second thing was the focus on sex and romance. (Specifically cishet, I just think that’s worth mentioning) I love the romance genre and reading happily ever afters but at some point the amount of romance focus just felt like too much to me. It’s like: we have conquered all of our worst problems, we have moved beyond death… and now romantic love is really all we have left as humanity? Is experiencing sex and romantic love the only way that anyone can accomplish anything of note or live a meaningful life? It’s  just an odd theme throughout all of the books in my opinion and it’s repeated in nearly every one of the short stories. Things like marriage and cisheteronormativity are still such a huge part of this future despite there being so many other changes in global culture. My favourite short stories were the ones with little to no romance because I got to actually learn more about the world and the characters in it and I think when some of them found new purpose in their immortality outside of romance it was a more satisfying conclusion for me. 

I’ll be posting a more detailed review soon but I think this best captures my initial thoughts without getting into any spoilers.
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I loved the scythe series so I was so excited to hear about this one. It was so nice to be back in the world and get to see some stories of other scythes and of times earlier than the main characters of the scythe books, however, I was a little disappointed that the entire book wasn’t written by Neal Shusterman and that some of the stories were collaborations as it doesn’t really mention that on the front cover. Other than that I really enjoyed this one
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This is a must read for fans of the trilogy! There were, of course, stories that I liked more than others, some that didn't work well for me ("Never Work with Animals" was a hard one to read), but still every single one adds something to this universe. There were so many situations and questions that I had thought about while reading the trilogy that are answered here, and some that I hadn't thought about but were super interesting. Hard to pick my favourites because, like I said, they all add something, but I'd say: "Formidable", The "Mortal Canvas" and "Meet Cute and Die". If you are worried about having read the trilogy too long ago and not remembering much, don't be, as long as you remember vaguely the characters and how it ended (both books 2 and 3), you'll be fine!
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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review!

I was very excited to see another entry to the Arc of the Scythe universe. The original trilogy had a lot to offer and the prospect of returning to this world was very intriguing. I had hoped this would serve as a prequel of sorts, revealing more of the lead up to the events of the initial plot. Something along the lines of Arcanum unbounded or the companion novels from the LOTR or WoT universes for instance. Unfortunately, that really wasn't what this book is and so my expectations were not met because they were wholly incorrect. 

That said, taking the book for what it is, I was still generally underwhelmed. The book features an array of vignettes into the lives of various individuals in this word including everyday people, scythes and even unsavories - most of them being individuals we never encounter in the original series. I thought the majority of the stories were dull and found myself asking "what is the point of this" many times as I read this book. For the most part these stories offer no new depth to the initial trilogy nor do they reveal new perspectives on characters or events. The allure of seeing into the lives of some of these characters simply was not there for me because the stories felt hollow. Some of the stories did pique my interest because on the contrary they did bring something more to the original story expanding my understanding of characters and events from the initial plot. I would have been content to have fewer individual tales that were longer and deeper than the multitude of shorter ones we get here. 

While this collection of short stories did not end up being engaging for me, I do see the fun in having the chance of roaming this world and of being a fly on the wall in a range of scenarios such as the ones encountered. I think so long as the reader goes into the book with the right expectation of "a good fun romp in the scythe universe" rather than "a deep dive into scythe lore", they will have a nice time.
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I really enjoyed diving back into the world of the Scythes.  The different stories were all interesting to read, with different viewpoints and events occurring within.  The writing styles were different, but all cohesive within the anthology.  The stories touched on so many different aspects of life in the Scythedom, and different experiences.  We had Scythe, Unsavoury, regular people, all intermingled.  

I found these stories to be very engaging, and would recommend to anyone that enjoyed the previous series.  

thanks to NetGalley for providing me with an ARC of this book to enjoy.
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This book was SO GOOD. When I was approved for an early e-copy of this I was jumping and screaming, especially because it was my birthday.  Arc of a Scythe is one of my favorite serie I have ever read and Gleanings is the perfect companion book for it. We can read stories from our favorite characters but also completely new characters we haven't met before. That is probably what I liked the most; how different every Scythe is and how each story was so well thought. My favorites were The First Swing, The Mortal Canvas and Meet Cute and Die. One of the thing Shusterman does so well is to create such unique characters and in so little time we get to know them very well because his writting is just that good. That is what makes this collection of shirt stories so entertaining, you don't have to get a full introduction before you get sucked in the story. I am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to read this book and I will recommend it to everyone who loved Scythe!
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3.5 - thank you so much for the opportunity to read this! 

I have some conflicting feelings, and I wish I had reread at least the Toll before starting this as my memory was a bit spotty and I think I missed some references. 

I did feel like this was kind of jumpy, with all the different authors and no cohesive structure, each story was very distinct. Some were very...artsy?? And went a bit over my head. 

Interesting overall, but not my favourite.
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Shusterman for the win again! I loved the Scythe trilogy and absolutely loved going back to that world in these short stories. A perfect addition to the Scythe series. Can't wait to buy this and add to my ever growing Shusterman collection.
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Absolutely LOVED the Arc of Scythe series and was so excited to get the change to read this arc! All the short stories we’re fantastic and have glimpses into different scythes, characters in the world and it was fun seeing other authors collaborate to bring the stories to life! 

I think my favourite stories were The Mortal Canvas and Perchance to Dream. They were both so compelling and I definitely see myself going back and reading them again!
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It was so great to reread this series! I wasn't really planning on doing so this soon after I first read them, but then we have Gleanings, so I had to reread the rest of the series before reading it, because rereading vs. rereading and then a new book changes the timeline on rereading! 

Citra and Rowen, or Scythe Anastasia and Scythe Lucifer, are both so fantastic to read about. This world is about the morals of killing, and while they started on the same path, it was wildly diverged, and they both learned different things. But oh, did I enjoy them so much! 

The thing about Goddard is that he's the worst of humanity. And it's funny, at one point he put down the founders for their rules-but he's the kind of thing that they were trying to prevent. But he's all high and mighty and evil. Bah!

Now that I knew where things were building up to, it was great to see the clues, see it all come together. To know about how the Scythedom sabotaged the Thunderhead's space efforts...And the possibilities there could've been if they hadn't. Alas! 

And oh, the stories in Gleanings. Some of them were almost happy, given this world and all, and some of them were really interesting to read, and some of them were sad. Like the one about Kila, Kohl's sister, and the one with Ben, Citra/Anastasia's brother. I loved the Antarctica one, it was great to explore the dreaming world. And the one with Scythe Dali was fantastic. Oh, and the one with Scythe Boo and her wayward niece. And the space ones, giving us post-The Toll looks at the world! That one with the dog, I didn't know where it would go, but it was so great! It was really great to read all of them, learn these things about this world! 

Loved rereading this series, and continuing with the anthology, and I had a great time reading them!
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