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.
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, when the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness.
Now 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 by so much death?
Favorite thing about the book?
The writing is beautiful, which you might not expect with a horror/zombie book. But, it really is lovely. The imagery is delightful and I appreciate the voice of Mary, which is not a typical teen, YA-type voice, yet still sounds age-appropriate.
I would tell readers that the title (which I think is brilliant), is representative of the writing in the rest of the book.
Obligatory least favorite thing about the book?
The ending. That’s all I will say without spoilers.
What was most surprising about the book?
The importance of romance. The romantic relationships in this book amounted to much more than subplot. Although, upon further reflection, maybe I shouldn’t be so surprised by the infusion of romance because love, of course, really ups the stakes.
Also, surprising was how unsympathetic the main character, Mary, could be. At times, I found her incredibly selfish. I think this is surprising in a good way, though. Mary is a multi-faceted character, fully formed on the page. We feel her restlessness, her disappointment with herself, and her inner-wrestling. Still, you might want to slap her upside the head a few times.
Hmmm…tough one. I think, by the end, Travis.
Besides the death and destruction of the zombie apocalypse? Just kidding. Honestly, one might not think zombie books would be heavy on the literary messages, but Forest of Hands and Teeth surprised me with nice insight into the collective memory of human beings. How stories are passed down. The importance of remembering.
I know there was supposed to be an undercurrent of Hope in the book, but I didn’t feel a whole heckuvalot of hope throughout the book. Maybe that’s just me.
After this book you felt…?
Pensive, sad, tired
Who would you recommend this book to?
Lovers of zombie movies. I think this book definitely has its place in the ranks of pop-culture phenomenons like Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead, and I Am Legend.
Folks tired of books with horror-creatures like vampires that aren’t actually scary will appreciate Forest of Hands and Teeth’s turn toward more traditional horror.
Of course, I recommend this to almost any teen fantasy lover–boys, too. However, adults, I wouldn’t write this off even if you do not typically read YA.
Finally, how long did it take you to read?
I bought this book yesterday around 2pm. Sat down, read until dinner. Had a date with Nate. Finished around 2am. So, 12ish hours, minus however long I was out.
**I’d love to discuss this book with folks that have read it already. Spoilers and all. So, if there are enough people who have read it–I know it just came out a week ago–then, I’ll set up a post and ask questions and we can discuss away**
I interviewed Carrie awhile back. You can check out the interview here.