Friday, February 11, 2011

Book Review: The Forest of Hands and Teeth

The Forest of Hands and TeethThe Forest of Hands and Teeth
Author: Carrie Ryan

In Mary's world there are simple truths:
The Sisterhood always knows best.
The Guardians will protect and serve.
The Unconsecrated will never relent.
And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village; the fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth.

But, slowly, Mary's truths are failing her. She's learning things she never wanted to know about the Sisterhood and its secrets, and the Guardians and their power, and about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness. When the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, she must choose between her village and her future-between the one she loves and the one who loves her.

Mary is a unique character. At first, I wasn't sure if I liked her, but she grew on me. In her small village, she doesn't have many choices and even those are taken away from her when her brother turns on her. It's her life's goal to see the ocean that her mother always told her stories about, but one thing stands in her way: the Unconsecrated.

From the descriptions, the Unconsecrated are zombies. They hang around outside the villages, waiting for someone to get to close to the fence, and then they pounce. The story really gets going when there's a breach in the fence that protects the village and Mary, Harry (her betrothed), Travis (his brother who Mary is in love with), and Cass (Travis's betrothed) are forced to flee the village or be devoured by Unconsecrated.

Mary sees this as her chance to finally get to the ocean. She uses the opportunity to take the crew, who are soon joined by Mary's brother Jed, on a wild goose chase for her own selfish reasons.

Most other young adult books force the teens to make very adult decisions when placed in a predicament like this. It is refreshing to see that Mary is selfish in many ways, and doesn't give up her desires so she can be the mature one. She has two simples wants: Travis and the ocean, and the rest of the story shows how she attempts to get both.

If you like zombie fight scenes, you'll love this book, because there are some pretty awesome ones throughout. The Unconsecrated are beyond scary. They're unrelentless, and their moans constantly follow the group on their trek to find other living people.

There are two other books in the series - The Dead Tossed Waves (already released), and The Dark and Hollow Places (March 22, 2011).



  1. I agree with your review. I enjoyed this one more than I thought I would. I just picked up the sequel...we'll see how that goes. ;)

  2. I didn't think I liked zombies until this book! Great review!

  3. I loved TFHT and TDTW. I can't wait for the next one to come out!

  4. This book looks fantastic. Thanks for the recommendation!

  5. I've never read a zombie book. This looks like a good one to start with.

  6. I really liked this one, I can't wait to read the third one.