Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Forest of Hands and Teeth by 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. 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?

Think of this book as a combination of M. Night Shyamalan's "The Village" and "I Am Legend" rolled all into one. Mary's world is one of a tiny village surround by the Forest of Hands and Teeth. All around her are the truths instilled in her by the Sisterhood and the Guardians. But what are they hiding? Is there more left of the world than Mary's tiny village? She has spent her whole life living on her mother's stories about the ocean and buildings taller than the sky.

But when the Unconsecrated turn on her village, Mary is forced to face the horrors that lie beyond the fence. Does the path lead anywhere? Or is theirs the only village left in the world? It is up to Mary to find out what the Sisterhood has been hiding from them for so long. Her only problem is that she is running out of time.

Ryan has created a dystopian society that believes they are the only humans left. This book pushes your boundaries and makes you questions the truths in your own world. It's not just another zombie book, but rather creates its own society with strict values. It continually makes you ask yourself, "What if...?"

Reading Rating:
Fast-paced read with plenty of violence and horror. There was constant action and terror, but the ending was less hopeful than I would have liked. Definitely not a happily ever after.

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