Books Like Scythe

Books Like Scythe

It is no secret that power tends to corrupt and this is a theme that has been explored by many authors. Even those who start out with the best interests of others can find their moral sense diminish as they gain more and more power. In his 2016, Scythe, Neal Shusterman envisions a future where death by natural causes is eliminated thanks to the artificial intelligence that is in charge. However, this comes at the cost of overpopulation, which results in an organization known as The Scythedom deciding who must die so that everyone else can live. The feature film based on the novel is still in development, here are a few more books like Scythe that deals with similar moral dilemmas.

This Mortal Coil

by Emily Suvada

This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada

The protagonist of This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada is Catarina, a 17-year old surviving on her own in a world devastated by a deadly virus. It is a grim future where people have turned to cannibalism to protect themselves from the virus. Those who are fortunate enough to possess the right genes are allowed into underground bunkers run by a mega-corporation called Cartaxus, but for everyone else, it is survival of the fittest. Catarina's father was the world's leading geneticists, but after his death, she believes that all hope of beating the virus is lost. Then Catarina makes the startling discovery that her father managed to create a vaccine, but she's the only one that can find and decrypt it. It also becomes clear that Cartaxus is not just going to relinquish their stranglehold on the world's genetic tech either, which places Catarina in their crosshairs.

The Program

by Suzanne Young

The Program by Suzanne Young

The Program by Suzanne Young is set in a future where suicide is an international epidemic among people under 18 years of age. The only proven course of treatment is "The Program" but while it cures depression, it also turns participants into a blank slate. The protagonist, Sloane, is trying her best to hide her depression as her parents have already lost one child. She knows that they will do anything to protect her from the same fate as her brother, which is why she is under constant surveillance at home and school. Sloane, and her boyfriend James, believe that their love will keep them strong. They only have to hold one for another year until they are both 18 and can stop worrying about The Program, but both are growing weaker as depression sets in.


by Jenetta Penner

Configured by Jenetta Penner

Configured by Jenetta Penner is a novel where function is everything and emotions have been outlawed. Avlyn Lark was born into the lowest level of society but ended up being assigned to a Level Two family after being removed from her biological parents. Avlyn tries her best to blend in, hoping that she will be able to hide her urges after being placed with a basic job once she officially transitions to adulthood. However, on "Configuration Day" she not only begins seeing strange visions but is hired by Genesis Technologies, the government firm that controls all citizens. This places Avlyn in serious peril, not just because of her secrets, but also because she has been secretly meeting a handsome member of the rebel forces.


by Lauren Oliver

Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Delirium by Lauren Oliver takes place in a future where love has been declared a dangerous disease. Where once people would do anything for love, even kill, they are now immunized via a procedure called the Cure. The Cure is compulsory for everyone who turns eighteen and promises a safe, predictable life. Lena Haloway has been looking forward to the Cure, despite her mother's suicide. She has faith in her government and that they will pick a suitable husband as well as a career for when she turns eighteen. However, this changes when she meets an enigmatic boy from the Wilds named Alex. Her encounters with Alex, who is one of the "uncured" living in the so-called "Invalid" community, throw everything that Lena has been raised to believe into question.

The Girl Who Dared To Think

by Bella Forrest

The Girl Who Dared To Think by Bella Forrest

The Girl Who Dared To Think by Bella Forrest is the story of twenty-year-old Liana Castell. Liana lives in a world where a gargantuan glass-walled tower is tied to humanity's survival and everyone must serve it faithfully. People all wear wristbands with a rating out of ten indicating how useful and loyal they are to the tower. They are also monitored by a device in their skull that is designed to report all forbidden thoughts. Despite her parents being perfect tens, Liana has four, the lowest possible acceptable score. She struggles to increase her score as she is an overseer-in-training, and the fate for those who drop lower is pretty grim. Unfortunately for Liana, resentfulness seems to be part of her being, and rebellious ideas come all too easily.

The Scorpion Rules

by Erin Bow

The Scorpion Rules by Erin Bow

The Scorpion Rules by Erin Bow is set in a future where the de facto ruler of the world is an Artificial Intelligence, called Talis. The protagonist, Greta, is a so-called "Child of Peace" which means she is held hostage by Talis to ensure that her parents do not start any wars. It is a system that has worked for centuries as those who rule must give one of their children up as a hostage that will be murdered for the transgressions of their parents. If Greta can survive until her eighteenth birthday she will be free, but she is also prepared to die with dignity if that is what is required of her. However, the arrival of a new hostage that defies the machines in control of everyone's lives opens up the possibility of rebellion. Greta discovers her quiet power in the process but will have to find a way to break all the rules if she wants to avoid the punishment that will inevitably follow.