The Forest of Hands and Teeth

The first words I spoke upon finishing this book–about fifteen minutes ago–were ‘I can’t believe I read that entire book for that ending’.  My husband asked ‘it was THAT bad?’–and no, it wasn’t ‘that bad’.  I guess not, anyway.  It was a good book.  It held my attention for the past two days, and I finished it quickly–that typically means that I liked it.  And I went online to find out when the companion book–not sequel, companion book (see below for an explanation of that)–comes out.  So I must have liked it.  Right?

Here’s the problem with ‘Teeth’.  It was utterly unbelievable at times.  And it was a story that takes place under unbelievable circumstances; a basic summary of the book would be…girl lives in post zombie apocalypse, and living in a post zombie apocalypse, well…it sucks.  If this sounds like it is a horror novel, well, you’re wrong.  The zombies don’t seem to bother anyone–so much so that even while being pulled at by said zombies (though they ARE behind a fence) and even after watching your own mother turn into one (don’t worry, this is not a spoiler, it happens in the first ten pages), the main character still has time to contemplate why the boy she likes does not like her back.  So NOW you’re thinking ‘oh–well it is a funny story, then’.  Wrong again.  This book really takes itself seriously, even when moaning zombies surround a house harboring a teenage girl who is excited about her first kiss.  I mean seriously?

Ok.  Maybe I didn’t like the book.  Except that I DID like the book.  I am so torn.  I don’t know.  Read it yourself and come to your own conclusion.  Clearly I don’t have one of my own.

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Carpe Diem

I bought this book months ago–right before I got my Kindle–and right AFTER I got my Kindle, reading books ‘the old fashioned way’ seemed so 20th century…so I didn’t even pick this book up again until last night.  And I’ve already finished it–so that says a lot!

This is the story of a girl named Vassar Spore–in case you didn’t know, Vassar is an extremely competitive college in New York (state, not city); the character was ‘named after’ this college.  Her mother is a life coach and her father is an efficiency expert, and she states her main life goals in the first chapter, which include but are not limited to graduating with a 5.3 GPA (this is actually possible–I looked it up) getting in to ACTUAL Vassar, and marrying a surgeon or lawyer.  She’s almost–ok totally–unbelievable as a character in the first third of the book.  But she’s forced to loosen up–and thus becomes more believable–when her grandmother blackmails her parents into letting Vassar (well, MAKING Vassar, really) accompany her on a summer-long trip through Southeast Asia.

I really liked this book–as I’ve said, I read it in less than one day–but am interested to hear if actual teenagers like it at all.  It seems like the kind of story you need a little life perspective to appreciate, but then again, a lot of young adults have much more life experience and perspective than I do, and I’m an ‘old lady’! To be fair, I cannot imagine anywhere I’d less like to visit than Southeast Asia, but halfway through this book I found myself google image searching the ruins of Angkor Wat (which is in Cambodia–I’d already checked out my globe to locate Cambodia!).  It looks like this…

Maybe this is a trip I will take some day.  And if a book can get me to want to visit Cambodia, well, that’s some book!