18 February 2010

The Dead Tossed Waves (Carrie Ryan)

So, remember about eight months ago I read that zombie apocalypse book The Forest of Hands and Teeth which freaked me out, had a bleak, bleak ending and kept me up at night for fear there were zombies in my kitchen? Well I've just read the sequel. Seems I'm a sucker for punishment.

The Dead-Tossed Waves follows a girl named Gabry, daughter of Book One's protagonist Mary. She has grown up in relative safety in the town of Vista, shielded from the zombies by stone walls and ocean. These surroundings are far less disturbing than the isolated village ruled by scary nuns and surrounded by barbed wire that we were introduced to the first time around. At the beginning of the story, Gabry and a few of her friends jump Vista's stone walls on a thrill seeking expedition and are attacked by zombies. A bunch of her friends are locked up, the boy she likes is bitten, her mother runs off... not a great day for her. Lots of intrigue, mystery and killing...

All this sets up what is basically a mirror of Book One - Gabry retraces her mother's path through the Forest of Hands and Teeth from the ocean to the village that used to be run by the scary nuns. This time however, she is more scared of the various groups of humans chasing her than the zombies. I found this one a lot less disturbing than book one, but that could have a lot to do with the fact that I read it in the middle of the day in a brightly lit bookshop, as opposed to at 2 am, in a creaky house. That said, I did still jump a bit when a colleague came up from behind to say hello. The ending is slightly more hopeful than the first book- I am feeling much better about what I now know to be a trilogy after this second book. The story is rounding out more, loose ends which drove me crazy in the first book are semi-tied up, and I can only assume (or perhaps hope) that book three will conclude the story satisfactorily. I feel much more confident telling you to read the series now I see where it is going. I think...

Edit: Reposted 18.02.10 as original post had technical glitch and a big section of text vanished into the ethers. Hope review will make sense this time!
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