The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie RyanDystopian/Zombie Fiction
Wow! The book blew me away! It gripped me on the first page and just didn't let go. This was one of those books I just wanted to go on and on. I wasn't ready for it to end. My only consolation with the book ending is that there are two more but, honestly, I almost cried when I knew the main character wasn't in them.
The story takes place in a futuristic world where a zombie-plague has decimated society. The infected live behind enclosures and fences, constantly alert for a breach that might destroy them all. Mary respects the fence but questions the overwhelming fear, until her own mother wanders too close. Now, Mary is on her own in a world that has no place for an unclaimed female and orphan. When zombies overrun the fence, Mary's village and entire way of life is destroyed in minutes and she is forced to flee into the Forest of Hands and Teeth (was there ever a scarier name for a forest?). As she flees, Mary has to make some agonizing decision for survival, the most profound and heartbreaking that of choosing to be truly loved or choosing to love truly.
Ryan's writing style is haunting and beautiful. It is so difficult to convey true horror to a reader but this was perfectly done. Ryan has a writing style lush and rich enough to marinate in. So addicting!