Parents' Guide to

The Toll: Arc of a Scythe, Book 3

By Michael Berry, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Violent sci-fi thriller finale plays masterful endgame.

The Toll:  Arc of a Scythe, Book 3 Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 18+

Just Unbelievable My 9 Year Old Son Is Traumatized

My 9 year old son was traumatized when reading this hate crime of a book. I hope that this author thinks about his actions and is sent to jail for a very long time. The words said, the pictures shown, and the remarks made were unacceptable. I don't know why he would label something like this a kids book. Never in my 34 years of reading have I seen something so off putting in a children's book. Parents should be ashamed for letting their children even near this book! Absolutely unacceptable. I hope that Neal Shusterman gets what he deserves and is sentenced to a death penalty. I have burned this book and my child is still in his room crying. He has been crying for 3 days straight now. Please fix this and recommend this to adults. Neal you should be ashamed. I can't believe this.
age 12+

A complex end to a thrilling series

This fantastic series developed in complexity and avoided many of the pitfalls of other dystopian sci-fi for younger readers. Shusterman continues to build a collection of diverse and complicated characters who find themselves in the Thunderhead's complicated series of plans to save humanity from its worse characteristics. Shusterman looks further into how religion shapes history, and how apocryphal stories find their way into shaping present understandings of confusing past events. So, this book moves quite far away from the shocking fun of learning about this new 'perfect world' and its Scythes, but it is entirely coherent and clever and provocative as all good sci-fi . Scythes Anastasia and Lucifer are much more fringe to the story with so many working parts. Some will find this disappointing, but the new characters, political intrigue, and seeing how everything comes together make this big read worth your time.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (12 ):

Super-sized science fiction sagas can sometimes test the patience of readers, but this epically convoluted trilogy rewards readers who persevere until the breathtaking ending. In The Toll, favorite characters appear in new roles, and each chapter brings fresh complications. Author Neal Shusterman orchestrates the narrative's endgame with high levels of suspense and humor, bringing to a conclusion a saga whose captivating premise has been explored from every interesting angle. The Arc of a Scythe books will appeal to readers who relish moral conundrums but want plenty of action to accompany the mind-bending philosophy.

Book Details

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