Review: DEAD-TOSSED WAVES by Carrie Ryan

TITLE: The Dead-Tossed Waves
AUTHOR: Carrie Ryan
GENRE: Young Adult, Horror/Zombies, Fantasy, Apocalyptic, Romance
March 9, 2010 - Delacort 


(Courtesy of Goodreads-No Spoilers!)

Gabry lives a quiet life. As safe a life as is possible in a town trapped between a forest and the ocean, in a world teeming with the dead, who constantly hunger for those still living. She’s content on her side of the Barrier, happy to let her friends dream of the Dark City up the coast while she watches from the top of her lighthouse. But there are threats the Barrier cannot hold back. Threats like the secrets Gabry’s mother thought she left behind when she escaped from the Sisterhood and the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Like the cult of religious zealots who worship the dead. Like the stranger from the forest who seems to know Gabry. And suddenly, everything is changing. One reckless moment, and half of Gabry’s generation is dead, the other half imprisoned. Now Gabry only knows one thing: she must face the forest of her mother’s past in order to save herself and the one she loves. 


After reading DEAD-TOSSED WAVES, the companion novel to THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH  it seems more like a sequel than just a “companion.” I love seeing storylines fill in from one book to another. She satisfied my curiosity with another good story. She weaved another tale around a post-apocalyptic world infected with a sickness killing people. They raise from the dead as zombies and walk around hungry for human flesh. They aren’t hunting, they’re mindlessly hungry to bite and infect. This story is told from the point of view of Gabry. I won’t spill any spoilers but I’ll suffice it to say, she has an intricate story to tell about where she’s going and where she’s from.

This story is layered with opposition. There is so much conflict that it feels as though she left no idea unimagined about “what is the worst that could happen?” The Mudo (zombies), the government, the Recruiters (army-like), the Soulers (cult), more and more. This book isn’t without suspense and worry.


I’d say it was a good read but a bit depressing. (But what zombie-world isn’t depressing?) This one is harder to read than the first book. There isn’t much optimism pouring from this character whereas the main character from THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH at least hoped for things. Gabry is the opposite; hopelessness and despair fill the pages of this book. If you can handle the lack of hope, you’ll love this book.(I’m nauseatingly optimistic, so I need to be fed hope to remain sane.) On that note I wanted to rate this book a 2. But it is in fact a really good story. *My favorite part is why she chose this TITLE. Awesomely icky! I’m rating this at 3: A Pretty Good Read.


Like I said with Book 1, this is listed as a Young Adult novel. I think it would be rated “R” in movie ratings because of descriptions of the gore (zombies) and mild sexual content but there was no bad language. It is so frightening, that I would probably warn my teen NOT to read it.

More Books by Carrie Ryan: