Book Review of The Forest of Hands and Teeth (Forest of Hands and Teeth, Bk 1)

The Forest of Hands and Teeth (Forest of Hands and Teeth, Bk 1)
reviewed on + 25 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2


I am not sure where to begin about the awesomeness that is this book! I devoured this young adult fantastical story in 24 hours. What a heartbreaking, emotional roller coaster of a story.

Mary is a young lady who lives in a village surrounded by fences strong enough to keep out the Unconsecrated - aka - flesh eaters! Her village has been around for many generations and the Sisterhood has taught the villagers that there is nothing beyond the fences but death. However, Mary dreams of what life has to offer outside the confines, constantly remembering the stories her mother told her of the ocean that existed before the Return. Mary has obligations to her family and her people, but she continues to long for something better, something more.

The Sisterhood, or the village's Godly body, created the laws the villagers live by. At times, these laws seemed so unfair, but if you are the last bit of humanity on earth, they are understandable. You either get married to procreate and rebuild humanity, or you become a Sister. Oddly enough, it seems as though the Holy Sisterhood has been keeping secrets from the villagers ...

After the walls to her village are breached by the Unconsecrated, Mary's curiosity, selfishness and determination lead her and her loved ones on one hellish, horrifying, emotional journey.

The story is intense and exciting, full of betrayal, secrets and lots of danger. But most of all, it is full of hope - the hope that Mary carries with her until the end. A very compelling tale. Of course, there is a love story. It is heartbreaking and really draws you into an intense emotional relationship with the characters as they fight to survive in the Forest of Hands and Teeth.


Carrie Ryan is a good writer, plain and simple. She developed Mary's character quite well, and it's hard to think of her as a teenager because she was very mature throughout, but also terrified, hard-headed and selfish. Ryan also never describes what happened to create the Unconsecrated, which leaves the plot oddly interesting and mysterious.