“The Dead-Tossed Waves” is the follow-up to “The Forest of Hands and Teeth,” which I reviewed in September of 2009.
Gabry has spent her life with her mother, Mary, at the lighthouse in Vista where they are in charge of disposing of the Mudo – the things that Mary calls the Unconsecrated – that wash up on the beach. Despite the fact that her world is filled with Mudo (zombies) that want to infect all of humanity, Gabry has a pretty good life; she has family, friends, and perhaps the affection of the boy she likes. Until she agrees to cross the Barrier with a group of friends, and everything changes. Now Gabry must figure out who she really is and what she really wants.
Yay! “The Dead-Tossed Waves” made me so happy! I liked “The Forest of Hands and Teeth” okay. I mean, I appreciated the writing and the basics of the world that Ryan created, but I really wasn’t a huge fan of Mary – I thought she was sort of distant and didn’t ever really get a good feel for her – and I thought that far too many questions about the world went unanswered. Part of that was the design of the storyline, but, honestly, it really bugged me. I like knowing what the rules and history of a world are, even if I don’t find out until the end of the book, not ever finding out is not really an acceptable thing in a book for me. And yet, the not knowing is what drew to me pick up “The Dead-Tossed Waves” even though I wasn’t crazy about “The Forest of Hands and Teeth,” because I had to hope that perhaps some of the questions from the first book were answered.
And they were! Yay! There is a little more that I hope she explores in the next book, but even if this is all that I get I am content. I also have to say, that I found Gabry a much more interesting and likeable character than Mary, perhaps because she was so much more vulnerable. She also developed more as a character than Mary did in “The Forest of Hands and Teeth.” Ryan’s writing is, as ever, quite good, and I was ever so pleased to see more of this post-apocalyptic world she has created. Bring on book three!