The Dead-Tossed Waves, by Carrie Ryan.

Or, in RoySpeak:  The Sea of Dead People in the Waves.

Gabry lives with her mother in Vista, a small Barrier town.  There, she’s always been sheltered from the larger world and mostly safe from the Mudo, though one of her mother’s main duties as the lighthouse keeper is to decapitate any zombies that wash ashore during high tide.  She’s comfortable in her town, she loves her mother and her friends.  She knows who she is, and where her life will lead.

[Movie Trailer Voice] But then one night, due to a single moment of rebellion, everything changes. [/Movie Trailer Voice]  Suddenly, all of her friends are dead, missing or imprisoned.  She discovers that everything she’s understood to be true… isn’t.  That not only is her entire life a lie, but that everything she understands about the world and everything she understands it to be… is wrong.

The Dead-Tossed Waves.

I was really looking forward to this book.  I was a huge, huge fan of The Forest of Hands and Teeth, and I was looking forward to another story sent in the same world AS WELL AS some answers to the many, many questions that the first book raised.

On the day the book arrived — back in, well, a long time ago — I ripped the package open, tossed it (the package) over my shoulder, and started reading.  I made it ten pages in before I shut the book.

The next day, I tried again, with the same result.

Not a good sign.

Verdict, in brief:

For me?  No.  Just… no.  My reasons are below the cut and will contain spoilers.

For other readers?  It depends.  If Bella Swan’s self-loathing wasn’t an issue, and Zoey Redbird’s inability to focus on MORTAL DANGER because she’s so busy thinking about her love life wasn’t an issue, and their shared ability to attract every single straight male in the vicinity despite their equal-yet-different lamenesses wasn’t an issue, well, then you’re a leg up on me already.

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Post-Reliable Wife reading.

A Reliable Wife.

After finishing A Reliable Wife (Which was crazypants in the best possible way, and which I will write about at length SOON), I put in three book requests at the library.

Coming, hopefully soon, will be:

  1. Classified: The Secret History of the Personal Column, by H. G. Cocks  (According to Amazon, the author’s first name is ‘Harry’, which could either be the Worst Thing Ever or the Best Thing Ever, depending on the career of the person so named.  I mean, it would be a great name for a porn star.  Or, I guess, for someone who writes about the history of sexuality.  Which Cocks has.  But I’m going to stick to thinking of him as H. G., because it’s way less distracting.)
  2. Another one about the classifieds:  Strange Red Cow: and Other Curious Classified Ads from the Past, by Sara Bader.
  3. And Robert Goolrick mentioned this last one in his Acknowledgments (well, he called it his Beholden, but if I did that I’d be worried that people would think/call me pretentious):  Wisconsin Death Trip, by Michael Lesy, which sounds nightmarish but also fascinating.

Sea of Dead People in the Waves


The Dead Tossed Waves


Are zombies dead?  Really?  Because they’re moving. And if they’re dead, than what are dead people that aren’t moving? What about a person that is infected but not stumbling around all crazy-like?  Is he dead? Because if he is dead, then what is Stumbly McMoanypants?

Though these questions are discussed at length, not one of them is answered in The Dead-Tossed Waves.  Not being one for philosophical blatherings, that suited me just fine.

To start, it’s only called a “companion” to throw you, and this becomes evident if you’ve read The Forest of Hands and Teeth.  There are tons of hints.  It’s clearly a sequel, though it picks up many years after TFOHAT.  In other words, things are not exactly what they seem.  OooOOOOOoooooOOoooooo.

(Moderate spoilage to follow.)

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