Forest of Hands & Teeth, Book 2
Pages: 407 pages
Finished: Apr. 3, 2010
First Published: Mar. 9, 2010
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Genre: YA, post-apocalyptic, horror
The story goes that even after the Return they tried to keep the roller coasters going.
Acquired: Received a review copy from Random House Canada.
Reason for Reading: Next in the series.
Summary: Gabry lives a safe, secure life in a village beside the ocean and behind a Barrier to protect them from the Mudo (zombies). She lives in the lighthouse with her mother who is the lighthouse keeper whose main job is to kill the occasional Mudo who washes ashore each morning. Gabry loves her life and has no wish to ever leave the safety, as from what she has learned in school, the stories her mother has told her and what she can see with her own eyes from the top of the lighthouse the world beyond is anything but safe. But one night a group of her friends bring her along with them as they breach the Barrier and go to the old amusement park. It is there that all there lives will forever change and Gabry will ultimately leave the village never to return.
Comments: I loved this book! Contrary to early reports that Carrie Ryan was writing a parallel novel and the misleading "a companion novel" printed on the front cover of the book this is indeed a direct sequel to the first book, The Forest of Hands and Teeth. The book takes place many years later, with a new generation of teens, in a different village but there are a couple of return characters from book one. It's difficult to review without giving away anything from either book but the main character, Gabry, in Dead-Tossed Waves is a complete contrast to the first books' main character, Mary. In fact, I'd say that the two books themselves are contrasts.
Gabry's village is part of the Protectorate: the group of surviving villages. Gabry's world is real; she knows what is out there beyond the barrier; she knows how likely it would be to become infected by the Mudo and become one herself. Gabry's mother has knowledge of the outside world and she helps Gabry feel safe in her village by reinforcing in her how deadly it is out there. This turns Gabry into a scared, weak character that must grow as the book progresses as she is thrown into that world and must deal with the challenges she faces. From one who has read the first book, we can see this is all in contrast to the circumstances and the personal character of that book's main protagonist, Mary.
I must say I deeply felt for Gabry as a character. Her whole world is turned upside down and it is a pleasure to watch her grow from the reluctant, scared girl to a worthy, decision-making, fighting member of her group. There are some twists which were fun as I did not guess them. In fact from early on, I had figured one thing out in my mind as being so obvious I wished the book would hurry up and reveal it, but when it finally did I was sooo wrong! Ha on me! I love it when that happens! Great book, I loved it just as much as the first one. Lots of zombie action, though not as violent as the first book, but certainly a very dark plot, characters die and characters do bad things. Don't expect any happy endings for anyone. The next book, which I'm presuming will be the last, trilogy anyone?, should prove to be very intriguing in whether the author gets the characters together for the best and one wonders how it will all finish in the end. Eagerly awaiting the next volume!