Are you thinking, “hasn’t she already read this book?” If so, yes, yes I have already read this book. And reviewed it, here. Here is a small sampling of what I thought:
Mary is a great character. Her mother has filled her head with tales of the ocean and the world before the Unconsecrated existed. Like all teenagers, she’s willful and very stubborn, but she’s also a dreamer and a doer, someone who isn’t afraid to take a chance to get what she wants. She dreams of seeing the ocean someday and there is nothing that will stand in her way. I would not have minded a little more strength in the secondary characters, but they were interesting in their own ways and were good supports for Mary. She was definitely the most well drawn of them all. She’s flawed, but you can’t help rooting for her.
This book starts with a bit of a bang (to put it mildly) and then it slows down a bit before speeding to the end. I liked that slow build up, as I thought it was a story that needed that slow, paced build up to the climax. There is a lot of background to get into, characters to meet, their history to learn, the history of the tiny village Mary lives in, the history of the Unconsecrated, the whole government, belief system and values to be set up…and I thought Ryan did a fantastic job. The slowness didn’t bother me a bit, because I found it all so FASCINATING. Even though the book is set in a very dystopian future, it felt very puritanical to me, which I liked about it. It felt very Nathanial Hawthorne meets George Romaro…. The Forest of Hands and Teeth is nothing, if not a page-turner.
It’s a small sampling, but I figure my love for the book comes through.
Here I am reviewing the audio. I wanted to reread in prep for The Dead-Tossed Waves but, having plenty to read, I reread in audio. And it’s great. It’s a new-to-me narrator (she hasn’t read many yet) named Vane Millon. At first, I thought it odd that they picked a reader who has an accent, especially since I always pictured it as being set in North Carolina, but by the end, I thought it worked. She is a Colombian actress and her slight accent is lovely. She reads slowly and precisely, which I admit, did take me a minute or two to get used to, but really, for me as the listener, it only served to build suspense. It wasn’t difficult to distinguish one character from the next, although I did find it odd that she thickened the accent so much for that main Sister in the Sisterhood. Since they were all from the same village and had been living there for hundreds of years, it seemed odd that one character would have such a thicker accent. However, it didn’t bother me THAT much. I do wonder how it would have been in the hands on a native narrator, but it’s still a great way to reread the book. It is still a compelling read and I loved it just as much this time as I did the first. I can’t wait to read The Dead-Tossed Waves and continue on with Mary’s story. (I do have to say, I would have loved to have heard what Jenna Lamia could have done with this. It feels like such a Southern book to me, I think a Southern accent might have been better.)
If I had to give ratings I would say 3/5 for the narration and 4.5/5 for the book. If that helps 🙂
Author: Carrie Ryan
Category: YA, Paranormal
On Sale: March 9, 2010
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