Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman

Rating –  4.4 out of 5

With Scythe Lucifer (Rowan) on the run and Scythe Anastasia (Citra) becoming a fully-fledged Scythe, things in the Scythedom have never been more tense. When Scythe Currie and Scythe Anastasia’s lives are threatened it becomes obvious that the status quo is shifting. That coupled with changes in the Scythedom’s leadership leads to unrest of the highest degree.

Favorite Quote

“Death must exist for life to have meaning.” ― Neal Shusterman, Thunderhead

Why I liked Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman

Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman is an excellent sequel to the first book. It has more action than the first novel just by nature of the fact that the first book was setting up a world that things are now happening in. While Scythe is an exploration of how humans react to and think about mortality, Thunderhead has a story to tell about this system and its vulnerabilities.  

A thing I enjoyed about Thunderhead was the inside look that we had into the Thunderhead itself. With the Thunderhead writing the journal entries at the start of every chapter, I felt like I better understood the system in a way that I had wanted to after reading the last novel. 

I also enjoyed the Grayson/Slayd’s Unsavory storyline as it shows that the Thunderhead has understanding and thought processes beyond just a basic “WHAT IS BEST FOR HUMANITY”. The descriptions of the Unsavory Clubs were fascinating. I am beginning to believe, much like Shusterman must, that there is some variability built into humanity that must be addressed to keep everyone healthy and happy. Some people have a need to be on the edge, but that doesn’t mean that there can’t be safe places for them to experience that.

The next book in The Toll by Neal Shusterman slated to be released Nov. 5th. Pre-order your copy today!

With that said, I have feelings about the way that this book ended that I am going to write about here. Please note that these are crazy, insane spoilers and click at your own risk!


When I read the ending of Thunderhead, I almost threw the book across the room! Xenocrates stepping down and Scythe Curie being in line to take over the Scythedom did not surprise me as much as I thought it might, but truly the ending on Endura was surprising. 

The Thunderhead totally freaked out! The build-up to the killing of the council members and the collapse of Endura kept me on the edge of my seat. And once all the marine animals were released I was horrified by the carnage. I’ll never be able to look at the ocean and sharks the same way again. I am also incredibly about Scythe Curie! I wanted for her and Scythe Faraday’s story to end up happier, and am disappointed at this point.

That said, I was impressed by the deftness of how the Tonist storyline came together. I had always thought that the Tonists were a great background to the overall story as religious cults have always fascinated me. The Great Resonance was an extra layer to the story that impressed me. I did not see it coming! 

Honestly, floored by this cliffhanger, I don’t know how we’ll go on after this. I trust that Shusterman has it all in hand, and I’m excited to see how the third book turns out.

In addition to Thunderhead, the final book in the series, The Toll by Neal Shusterman will be out November 5th, 2019.

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