Tuesday, February 8, 2011


First Published in Great Britain in 2009 by Gollancz

Paperback : 310 pages

ISBN : 978 0 575 09085 9

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, 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?

* * * * * * * * * * * *
This book intrigued me from the beginning - and that was before I even opened the cover - the name itself was enough to have me thinking it should be interesting.

The story revolves around Mary, a teenager living in a society that cannot leave the confines of the village. On the other side of the gates, the undead walk and thirst for blood. Mary has seen many people lost to the Forest, and she is about to see alot more. Mary struggles with the belief that there is nothing outside the village - that the world is gone, and all she wants to do is follow her dreams and see the wonderful ocean that her mother told her about growing up as a young child.

Through a tragedy, Mary finds herself in the hands of the Sisterhood, who try hard to break her spirit and make her conform, as no-one stood up and asked for Mary's hand. But nothing will stop her questions, and her thirst for more. When a 'visitor' appears in the Cathedral one night, Mary finds herself pushed to the limit to find out where they came from - but before she gets the chance, the visitor is gone.

As always, there is a love story, which has many twists and turns, and when a small group of them find themselves wandering the path between villages, all the while being stalked by the Undead on the other side of the fences, emotions run high and deep, as they try to come to terms with what has happened to them, and the bleak outlook for their future.

For me, Mary was stubborn and a little more mature I guess than most of the YA heroines we come across in books these days. You will ask yourself if Mary is putting her desires over the safety of the group, and in the end you will see reconnection between brother and sister that you thought was lost for good.

Enjoyed this read, and looking forward to the next 2 books THE DEAD TOSSED WAVES and THE DARK HOLLOW PLACES.

Rating - 7/10

1 comment:

Belgie said...

The characters in The Forest Of Hands and Teeth were extremely three dimensional to the point were you felt that they jumped off the page. Since, you could feel their fears, their fight for happiness, and their battle to be strong in a world were all you want to do is cower in a corner. Carrie even crafted the unconsecrated in a way that you began to feel sorry for what they had became even though you wanted to hate them for what they had done to the world. Mary was probably my favorite character overall because her strength just amazed me. I loved how no matter what happened to her she never gave up and always found the bright side of things. Also, I liked the romance between Travis and Mary. It was a cute and great add to the story.

Also, I became completely enthralled in the world Carrie Ryan had created. Since, I always find it interesting to read about what an author thinks may happen in the future. Plus, the world felt real to me. Though, I had a couple of problems with it. Such as, Carrie never really said what had lead to the unconsecrated. Also, she never really came out in said what the unconsecrated were, leaving me to infer that they were zombies.