The Forest Of Hands And Teeth

The Forest Of Hands And Teeth by Carrie Ryan
Carrie Ryan
Release Date:

Rating (0 - 10 scale)

Age Level
young adult

Flamingnet Content Rating
Content Rating

Please buy your books through our site. Flamingnet is an Associate member of This means that we receive a credit at for every book purchased through Flamingnet. We use these credits for our expenses and to buy books for libraries that do not have money to purchase books for their collections.

Flamingnet Student Book Reviewer  MDG
Mary's village is the last heartbeat of humanity. Her community, located in the Forest of Hands and Teeth, has endured droughts, disease and the Unconsecrated, flesh-eating zombies that are always trying to find a way into the village. After her parents die and her brother disowns her, Mary goes to live with the Sisterhood, a group of women who know everything about the village. As Mary gets accustomed to life in the Cathedral, she begins to discover things that she can't believe. But Mary's search for answers is cut short when a breach in the fence leads to an Unconsecrated attack. Will Mary and her friends be able to survive?

The Forest of Hands and Teeth is one of the best books I have read in a long time. It is set in the future, after our world collapses from a virus that causes people to turn into zombies, also known as the Unconsecrated. The people in Mary's village are the last humans alive, or so they believe. In a world without hope, Mary still has this gut feeling that there is more to the world than just her village. She is a resilient character who overcomes loss and despair and continues to move forward. Unlike everyone else, she is not content to live out her life in the village; she wants to leave and see if there really is an ocean, like in her mother's stories. These traits made Mary an interesting character. In addition to Mary's character, the plot, details and the rest of the cast were written so beautifully that I can't help but highly recommend this book to all teen readers.

Reviewer Age:17

Reviewer City, State and Country: Aston, Pennsylvania United States


Flamingnet Student Book Reviewer  MBoyd
The Forest of Hands and Teeth is a book set in the future with some clear rules. One of them is to avoid the half dead, called the Unconsecrated, that haunt the edge of her village. The fence that divides the living from the dead also keeps the village safe from the surrounding Forest of Hands and Teeth. When an uncrossable line is crossed, a girl named Mary starts to discover things she didnt want to know about her world. She begins to wonder about the world outside her community and whether or not she could have a future there. A break in the fence forces her to decide whether to stay knowing these things, or venture out into the unknown and face its possible dangers.

While I often enjoy sort of disturbing science fiction books, I found this one difficult to get through. It was extremely well written and descriptive, but the whole story was very dark. Especially at the beginning, the main character/narrator seemed very hopeless and miserable in her life. As the book progressed, Mary becomes a little more optimistic, but the events continued to worsen and I found it hard to read when so many bad things had happened. Even so, the writing is strong and the author made it a memorable story. I would only recommend this to people who like hauntingly beautiful books and dont mind lots of death and sadness.

Reviewer Age:13

Reviewer City, State and Country: Needham, Massachusetts USA


Start a book club!

BOOK REVIEW SERVICES For Authors, Publishers, and Others

Learn More
  • The 2008 YALSA/Sagebrush Corporation Award Recipient
  • SoMIRAC Media Award
Learn More

We are very proud and honored that our sister site,, has been recognized by the American Association of School Librarians as a Best Website for Teaching and Learning.