A girl lays on the sand as the ocean waves wash in around her.

About the Book

Title: The Dead-Tossed Waves (The Forest of Hands and Teeth #2)
Published: 2010

BFF Charm: Meh
Talky Talk: Straight Up
Bonus Factors: Carnivals, World War Z
Relationship Status: Annoying Sidekick

The Deal:

Gabry leads a quiet, sheltered life by the sea. Her mother, Mary, has been Keeper of the Lighthouse since she appeared in seaside Vista sometime several years ago. Gabry has grown up safe and protected, a marked contrast to her mother Mary’s childhood in The Village.

But, nothing safe can last, because teenagers are kinda dumb, as a rule. And so Gabry joins her bestie Cira, and her bestie’s hot older brother, Catcher (one day, one day! there will be normal names in a YA book again.), over the walls of Vista to the closed-off carnival beyond. Which. Can you blame them? Roller coasters! But, disaster strikes, as you knew it would, in the form of a Breaker, the fast-paced zombies that we were first introduced to in The Forest of Hands and Teeth. (And yes, that Breaker was called Gabrielle. And yes, that means Mary named her kid after a zombie.)

Catcher is bitten, Cira is caught by the Protectorate (kinda like the cops of Vista) and Gabry, who made a break for it, is forced to leave her home in order to save Cira and find Catcher before he dies and Returns.

The journey is made even more confusing with the appearance of hot skinhead Elias (he’s not really a skinhead), who may or may not recognize Gabry from sometime in the past. Not to mention that Catcher? Um, kind of isn’t dead . . .

BFF Charm: Meh

BFF charm with a :-| face

I was like the only human alive who liked Mary in The Forest of Hands and Teeth. Everyone else thinks she’s selfish but, um, it’s the ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE. If you guys think I’m going to wait around and bake you cupcakes when there is someone clawing at the door trying to EAT MY BRAINS, you got another think coming. Sorry! I’m looking out for number 1! I will eat all the cupcakes!

So, like I said, it didn’t bother me that Mary was selfish, because I would be too. But on the whole, Gabry is much nicer than Mary, and that’s BORING. She’s not as bad-ass as her mom (Mary beheads zombies with a shovel. Twice a day.), but I will say she knows how to step up and Get Things Done. But I found myself wishing this were another book about Mary, frankly. I just find her more interesting, probably because she is so imperfect. So, yeah, I’d probably hang out with Gabry, but only in a Stacy’s Mom sort of way.

Swoonworthy Scale: 1

Okay, Carrie Ryan, this is An Official Plea. Can it with the love triangles. You know what? I’m sort of sick of love triangles. Has anyone ever been in an actual love triangle? THEY SUCK. For pretty much everyone involved.

And the thing is, the book doesn’t need a love triangle! It’s got action and adventure, and lots of clever riddles and backstory. It doesn’t need a love triangle! It doesn’t even need a relationship!

Anyway, Gabry, Catcher, Elias. Take your pick of the best guy for the job, because I can’t bring myself to care.

Talky Talk: Straight Up

Something that I love about this series is that I have NO IDEA when it takes place. Pretty much all the tech has been destroyed by Our Zombie Overlords, and because people are so isolated, they have very particular ways of speaking. In Vista, everyone is pretty straight forward in their speaking, i.e. not whackadoo-olde english like in Mary’s village in The Forest of Hands and Teeth. But, I guess the normal speaking is an exchange for normal names because WHAT KIND OF NAME IS CATCHER??

Bonus Factor: Carnivals!

Fair/carnival lights at night and a spinning swing ride

Come on! Who doesn’t want to ride a roller coaster with a cute boy? So what if the penalty is DEATH?

Bonus Factor: World War Z

Rick from Walking Dead stands in front of double doors that say "Don't Open, Dead Inside".

World War Z is, for me, the ultimate zombie book, even beating out such favorites as Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Zombie Begins With U, which is a short story I wrote in the 8th grade about how the protagonist’s best friend started the zombie apocalypse and it was in no way a metaphor for how my actual best friend totally dumped me and led the school in chanting about how ugly and weird I was. Ahem.

Anyway, like I was saying, WWZ is an awesome zombie book, because it accurately details the total destruction and loss of self that the zombie apocalypse brings. The Dead-Tossed Waves had a lot of really great moments about what it means to be a human and what defines a soul.

Relationship Status: Annoying Sidekick

I don’t mean that this book is my annoying sidekick. I mean that I would be its annoying sidekick! Cause when the zombie apocalypse happens – AND IT WILL HAPPEN, PEOPLE – then I want to hang around with people who are good with shovels (Mary), figuring out riddles (Gabry), considerable strength of will (elias) or immune to zombies (Catcher). Or TOTALLY FLIPPING CRAZY (cira), so that I feel more sane.

And I defintely think I’ll still be hanging out with this series when the third book, The Dark and Hollow Places, comes out. I feel like I definitely need to stick around to learn how best to defeat the hoarde of Mudo who are trying to gnaw off my face!

Extra Notes: I want to thank FYA commenter and awesome blogger, Talya, for sending me the ARC for this book! It made a particularly difficult and long weekend fly by much faster than it would have otherwise!

FTC Full Disclosure: I received my free review copy from the publisher via a friend. I received neither money nor cocktails for writing this review (dammit!). The Dead-Tossed Waves is available now.

Erin is loud, foul-mouthed, an unrepentant lover of trashy movies and believes that champagne should be an every day drink.