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?"
Now, yes, this book is from a girl's point of view, but I still think that boys would appreciate this book. It's got zombies in it and some great, well written heart-pounding scenes throughout the book.
Ryan's debut is simply remarkable; it is a gripping, post-apocalyptic tale that's hard to put down. Mary is such a well-written, multi-layered character and it's so easy to get emotionally invested in her, eagerly turning the pages to read more of her story. This book is about much more than zombies, which in turn makes it more than just a run-of-the-mill horror zombie novel. One of the things I enjoyed about this book was that everything had already happened- in the small amount of zombie books I've read so far, they seem to be more about how the infection starts and spreads, and how people cope with it and try to fix it. In this story, the infection has already spread and no one has been able to stop it, just protect themselves from it in being within their enclosure. And, in the end of the novel, the infection has still not been stopped. Nothing is tied up neatly in a bow at the end; sacrifices have been made, tons of lives lost, but it's not all bleak. At the end, there is still a sense of hope, of perhaps something better to come. I am excited to read the sequel when it comes out.
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