Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Review: The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

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The Forest of Hands and Teeth
(The Forest of Hands and Teeth, #1)
Carrie Ryan
Released March 10th, 2009
by Delacorte Books for Young Readers

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.

And she must face the truth about the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Could there be life outside a world surrounded in so much death?

This was a really exciting read. The plot was not what I expected from the little I knew of the synopsis – it was even better! The Forest of Hands and Teeth takes us years after a virus turned everyone into zombies, except for a certain few who have escaped and built a village surrounded by fences. We follow this girl, Mary, who lives in this village and she wonders if it’s true that there is nothing and no one beyond the fences, but zombies (or Unconsecrated as they call it). Then one day, the fences are breached and Mary has run off to the forest trying to find any signs of life, all the while trying not to get bitten. This is a true, creepy, exciting zombie novel!

For the first part, the book was pretty slow moving and a tad boring. Mary just kept whining about how her life sucked. But after the fence is breached the story gets very engrossing, fast paced, and keeps your heart racing until the very last page. It would have gotten 5 espressos if not for the slow beginning.

The author is obviously very talented. The writing is great. She did a very good job at making their world very eerie and nostalgic. The characters are well-rendered. You really feel for them – their loneliness, fears, and will to live. It was great to have a female main character who was strong and didn’t need a boy to hold her hand and lead. She also grew to be optimistic which was a relief. I do wish we would have gotten more explanation about what happened before that lead them to this life; how the virus started and such. Maybe in the next books!? We’ll see.

I recommend this to anyone who likes heart pounding excitement and isn’t afraid of a little zombiesauce.

4 Hot Espressos
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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.

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25 Responses to “Review: The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan”

  1. Cristina

    I really enjoyed this book. I agree that Mary was annoying at times, and there were times when I honestly just wanted to push her over the fence and get it over with, LOL

    But I absolutely loved the voice and tone of the story, it was haunting and creepy and oh so lovely.

    Love your reviews šŸ™‚

  2. Chey

    This definitely wasn’t what I was expecting, and as stated in my recent review, I’m still really glad that I kept reading- even when I wanted to put it down and read something else. The thing that happened in that story were so unexpected for me. I will definitely be reading the next books in the series when I get a chance.

  3. Anna

    Wellll… I’m really glad you liked it, because I absolutely HATED it. Haha, I thought Mary was the worst protagonist ever, she’s whiney and selfish and she just kind of sucked. And the ending was ridiculous and made me really made… but anyways… Glad you liked it šŸ™‚ I know a lot of people who did, so I’m probably in the minority hahah

  4. Book Crook Liza

    This one has been on my list for a long time! For some reason though I thought it was actually a historical – maybe because the cover gives off that vibe to me! The fact that it’s set in the future makes it more interesting though. I don’t know about zombies though…. I’m a little apprehensive about the zombie thing, but I really need to give one a try. I was apprehensive about dystopians and I ended up falling in love with the genre! Great review! šŸ™‚

    Liza @ Book Crook Liza

  5. RJ @ RJ Does Books

    I started this one and put it aside to read something else that I’d been waiting for a few months ago. I definitely have to go back and read it again. I think I left off where she was with her mother. Which, if I’m not mistaken, is like the first 20-30 pages. Great review!

    RJ @ RJ Does Books

  6. AmyG

    I love this entire series!!! I will say the 2nd one was actually my favorite, followed by the 3rd, then the 1st! So, if you haven’t read the others, I encourage you too!!! Great read for October!!!

    AmyG @ YA-Sisterhood

  7. Shellie

    I have seen this around but have never really had time to stop & read the synopsis or anything. I’m going to be adding this to my list because it sounds very good. Great review =)

  8. Peggy

    I have been wanting to read this for awhile. I didn’t realize it was a zombie dystopian, that is pretty awesome! Great review! I can’t wait to get a chance to finally read it!


  9. Karen

    I cried & cried with this one. I haven’t made it to book two….lol I will though now that the series is over and I don’t have to wait a year between books.

  10. Tara

    I read this one before all the dystopians started coming out this year. I love that it mixes my two faves – zombie & dystopia! This was one of my faves since The Hunger Games….I was really disappointed with the rest of the series though!

  11. TG

    This is one of my favourite YA books. I actually love the beginning, because I love the stuff with the Sisterhood. I agree that Mary is selfish, but her life is horrible and I think she should have grabbed at any chance of happiness she could get. I also loved the ending, because I loved what happened with Travis. I thought it was really brave of the author to do that.

  12. Samual

    I’ve been wanting to read this book, and had finally be able to read it. I like the sounds of it, plus the cover looks pretty. At first I thought it was quite boring, but then I was able to suck into Mary’s world after a couple of chapters or so. Great review! Thank you for sharing it!! šŸ™‚