The Forest of Hands and Teeth
Mary dreams of a world beyond her village. But she also knows how impossible that dream is; according to the Sisters, no other village still exists. The Unconsecrated, the undead who claw at the village's fence, have infected everyone outside it. But one day the impossible happens: a normal, healthy-looking young woman emerges from the forest outside the village. Her presence gives Mary hope. It is hope she needs when, soon after, the Unconsecrated breach the village fence. To survive, Mary must escape from the village into the Forest of Hands and Teeth.
JLG Release: Apr 2009
Awards & Honors
ALA Best Books for Young Adults 2010
Praise & Reviews
Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, Book List, Publishers Weekly*, School Library Journal*
Junior Library Guild
After her mother becomes Unconsecrated and disappears into the Forest, Mary is haunted by her memory. But she finds joy in new love. Mary has been sent to join the ranks of the Sisterhood, the religious order that rules the village. One night, Mary’s friend Travis is brought to the Cathedral, requiring medical attention. Mary treats him and prays with him, and, over time, they secretly grow closer, even sharing a stolen kiss. But tragedy strikes again when the Sisters forbid her to see Travis and expel her from the Cathedral. Alone, Mary has no choice but to accept a marriage proposal from Travis’s older brother, Harry, who has loved Mary all his life. However, when the Unconsecrated break through the fence, Mary, Travis, and Harry are all members of the small party that escapes into the Forest. Even as they flee for their lives, heartbreak follows them.
Suspenseful and sensitively written, The Forest of Hands and Teeth breathes new life into the genre of the undead.
5 1/2" x 8 1/4"
Level 5.8; Points: 14;
Scholastic Reading Counts
Level 6.2; Points: 21;
Potentially Sensitive Areas
Zombies, Belief, Loss, Grief, Marriage proposals, Responsibility, Fences, Death, Choices, Childhood stories, Convents, Injuries, Love, Secrets, Outsiders, Duty, Vows, Secret passages, Dreams, Invasions, Escape, Survival, Infection, Roman numerals, Villages, Safety, Isolation, Preparing for a disaster, Curiosity, Photographs, Rivalry, Killing, Fear, Sacrifice, Fire, Taking a risk, The ocean, Rescue,