The Toll (Arc of a Scythe #3) by Neal Shusterman

Sci-fi, 627 pages, published in 2019

Citra and Rowan have sunk to the bottom of the ocean, along with the rest of Endura. Now, Goddard is in control of a better part of the world and is changing scythes rules on gleaning so they are more relaxed. The Thunderhead has deemed all of humanity unsavory, except for Greyson, who has become an icon for the Tonists.

Spoiler Free Review:


Where do I even start with this book? I recently fell in love with Scythe and Thunderhead while rereading them, so I was so ready to read this last book! I was a little intimidated by the size, but it ended up being such a good conclusion to this trilogy!

My biggest/only issue with this book was the timeline in the beginning. The book follows a few different characters, and their timelines all start off at different points. Eventually, they all do converge and stay at the same time, but I definitely got confused, especially because the description of the book says that it starts three years after the events of Thunderhead. Some story lines do start that late, but some start immediately following those events.

This series grew so much in scope throughout. I was not expecting this book to heavily feature some of things that seemed like background worldbuilding from the first book. This was definitely not a bad thing! It made the world seem so much more fleshed-out, in my opinion. In the first book, we only really see the scythedom in depth, but through the rest of the series, we get to see the actual world as well.

For you, Honorable Scythe Anastasia, I would die a thousand deaths at my own hand.

pg. 404

There was a character in this book who was genderfluid! They are from whole region where children are raised without a gender until they are a certain age. This was handled so well in the book. All of the characters reacted to it like it was normal (because it is) and I really appreciated that there were multiple conversations about it.

The ending of this book messed me up a little bit, I think. It was just so emotional for me, because I really couldn’t predict what was going to happen. I know that no one is safe in this series, so I was seriously worrying about the survival of my favorite characters. I was overall really happy with how everything wrapped up!

This series has just become such a favorite of mine. It is shocking and kind of fun, but it still makes me think about morality and death. I normally don’t love plot-driven books like these, but Neal Shusterman is so good at writing interesting and engaging plots. I can’t wait to read more from him in the future!

If it isn’t clear already, I highly recommend this series!

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6 thoughts on “The Toll (Arc of a Scythe #3) by Neal Shusterman

  1. Really great review! 🙂 I LOVED this book and series so much, I wasn’t expecting the ending with the main bad guy to go the way it did, but I was really happy with how it ended, and it leaves you wondering what’ll happen to the characters who survived in future. By the way, I also loved the characters responses to the gender fluid person, it was brilliant and the whole book made it feel so normal which it of course is. Refreshing also to not have the focus on the book be about that, but just bring it up as a side note. I hope more books and stories are written in the future where this is normal so people in reality feel more accepted/ accepting (I hope I made sense, lol) 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I totally didn’t expect the ending with the bad guy either! I’m sooooo curious about anything that happens to the remaining characters omg like I feel like each of them could have such unique stories after this. What you said totally makes sense and I agree!

      Liked by 1 person

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