So there I was in the middle of Borders on Thursday, wandering through the YA section when my eyes darted up. Hey, says brain. You know that cover. And I do. It’s a cover I’ve seen and loved for what seems like forEVER waiting for the book to come out. A cover who’s contents weren’t even supposed to BE out til Tuesday. It was The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan. It took a moment for my hands to acknowledge what my brain was telling me "IT’S THERE IT’S THERE!!! GRAB. ITTTTTTT!!!!" which I promptly did, with a loud "SQUEEEEEE" audible all the way over in Poetry, beyond Travels. I made it even worse when I added, "Ohmygodforestofhandsandteeth!" reverently and to no one in particular. I then stood there clutching the book with the kind of smile I only use when something totally joyous has occurred, the one that usually scares my friends. The smile faded. This book, it wasn’t supposed to be out yet. What if they tried to take it back?
I watched the cashier, trying to gauge the distance from the counter to the door in seconds. If she tried to take it back, could I snag the book and just send carrie_ryan a check? But then it happened…. Borders clerk? She HANDED. ME. THE. BOOK!!! I did kind of a side step wary shuffle (zombiesqe?) to the doors, waiting to be ambushed by security. I opened the door, paused…nothing. Huzzah! Early copy of FHT was MINE!!!
I was very pleased with my restraint. I made it all the way to the car before I cracked it open…yanno, just a few sentences while I turned the key and sipped my coffee and got ready to drive.
….and here’s where things get strange. You know how there are those people on the weird scifi shows that talk about aliens and losing time? I get them now. Because I opened the book, started to read and the next thing I remembered thinking was "Wow, it’s hot in here." By that point I was on Chapter 4. With my car idling. In the parking lot of the bookstore.
That’s pretty much how the rest of the book went. I’d sit down for "just a chapter" and wind up devouring fifty pages. I sat down to eat, looked at the clock and thought "You can read til 8 then back to work." It was about quarter til. A "few minutes later" I looked up at the clock. Still about quarter til 8. Did I find it odd? Nope. I went right back to reading. It was quite awhile, and my third check of the clock when I realized it was impossible that I’d read that long and no time had passed. Check clock again….still quarter til 8…but the second hand was doing that little bouncy stuck thing. Real time? 9:30pm. OUCH. Of course by this time there was no escaping. I COULD NOT put the book down. I HAD to find out what happened to Mary, what the deal was with the Sisters…and the Unconsecrated.
Guys, you have to read this. I actually had nightmares. The good kind that wake you up terrified and checking shadows and listening for zombie moans. With all the hype I was worried it wouldn’t live up, but Carrie not only delivered on a wonderful read, her world was so well written it left me with nightmares. This book, in short, ROCKED my socks. Well done, Carrie!!
If you need MORE convincing (srsly??) check out her awesome book trailer: