Book Review: The Dead Tossed Waves

I loved The Forest of Hands and Teeth (it’s pretty great in audio too!), so there was little doubt in my mind that I would be reading The Dead-Tossed Waves immediately upon publication.  With luck, it happened to come out near the time of the 24-hour-readathon, so I scheduled it in to read then.  It was the perfect choice; because once I started I could not put it down.  It was just as un-put-down-able as the first; if not more so.

This review is going to assume you’ve read The Forest of Hands and Teeth.  I just can’t figure how to write it without giving away spoilers to the first book.  Also, this is being called a companion piece, which I take issue to.  I don’t think you should read this one before The Forest of Hands and Teeth. It just wouldn’t read right if you did.

Gabry lives a quiet, safe life, in the lighthouse by the ocean.  Well, as safe as one can get, when one also lives close to the Forest of Hands and Teeth, home to the many Mudo who crave the flesh of those living inside the city.  The quiet life she leads with her mother is shattered with a group of kids sneak out of the town one night,  across the Barrier into the abandoned amusement park, and is attacked by the Mudo.  Gabry manages to get away, as does her crush Catcher, but is racked by the guilt, fear, and confusion that comes with the attack.    As Gabry and the rest of the town wait to find out what will happen to the ones who broke the law and crossed the Barrier, Gabry’s mother, decides to leave and return to the Forest of Hands and Teeth. And just like that, everything in Gabry’s life has changed and suddenly she finds herself having to grow up and discover the mystery of her mother’s past, if she hopes to find her own future.

Honestly, I think reading this book fast, without stopping, was the way to go.  I was immediately sucked into the story and it wouldn’t turn me loose.  It also helped me ignore the… how do I put it… annoying… writer… hmm… this is hard to say because I really like Carrie Ryan and her work and her story… but… aw heck; I’m just going to go ahead and say it.  The writing is lazy.  If there is one thing, ONE THING, that is a pet peeve with me and writers, it is writers who use fragmented sentences.  And Ryan is the queen bee of writers who use fragmented sentences.  They drive me crazy.  It’s just lazy people, lazy writing.  It’s one thing to talk that way, it’s a whole different thing to write that way.   However, DTW had something going for it too.  Mary, the main character of FHT, was not a favorite character of mine.  While I loved the story, I just didn’t like her that much.  She was one of the most selfish characters I’ve ever met.  Gabry, the main character of DTW, was much easier to like.  In fact, I liked all the characters this time around; which is saying a lot since Mary reappears in this story.  It was great to see how her character had grown and changed through the years.  I was very happy with her.  Oh the whole, DTW is what it is, a Young Adult, paranormal, not the best written, but still  very exciting, book.  I enjoyed the heck out of it and I can’t wait for the next one in the series, The Dark and Hollow Places.  I will be getting it as soon as it comes out as well.  I’m hoping it’s near the time of next year’s read-a-thon.

Read an excerpt

The Dead Tossed Waves
Carrie Ryan
Category: Young Adult/Paranormal
Published by: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 416 Pages
On Sale: March 2010
ISBN: 978-0385736848

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