Saturday, March 13, 2010

Gabry searches for meaning in DEAD-TOSSED WAVES by Carrie Ryan

OK Junkies, I had been waiting for Carrie Ryan's next installment in her post-apocalyptic, dystopian, zombie series (at least I hope it's a series, there better be more where this came from Ms. Ryan!) and now that I've finished Dead-Tossed Waves, I can't wait to tell you all about it.

I loved Ryan's first book, The Forest of Hands and Teeth and you can read my post about it here.
Dead-Tossed Waves is a companion to The Forest of Hands and Teeth and the main character is Gabry, Mary's daughter.  At first, I was afraid this book would be Zombies: The Next Generation--the same story only with new characters and a slightly different setting.  I'm so glad I was wrong.

Gabry is very different from her mother.  While Mary is brave and was willing to risk anything in pursuit of her dreams, Gabry is terrified of the world outside the walls.  While Mary felt trapped by the fences surrounding her village, Gabry welcomes the safety the walls around her provide.

The Forest of Hands and Teeth starts slow and thoughtful, building up to the blood, violence, death, and decapitations that plague the zombie-ridden world.  Dead-Tossed Waves begins with a bang.  Characters are attacked, infected, and killed as soon as we meet them.

What I loved about Dead-Tossed Waves was that the entire story is set in motion by Gabry's decisions.  In The Forest of Hands and Teeth, so much seemed to happen to Mary that was out of her control.  Other people's decisions and outside occurrences created the conflict.

Gabry and her choices are the driving forces behind Dead-Tossed Waves.  Ryan did such a good job of creating Gabry's character and setting up her decisions that I was yelling at the book each time Gabry made a choice.  I think my new barometer of how good a novel will be whether or not it makes me holler at it).  

Gabry is a perfectly flawed heroine and some of her decisions in the beginning drove me nuts.  I found myself intermittently shouting at her for being a pathetic coward and for taking dangerously stupid risks.

And that's part of what this book is about.  We all make mistakes, that's what makes us human--something that's easy to forget with Mudo pushing themselves against barriers, waiting to infect anyone who missteps.  Dead-Tossed Waves is so much more than an action-filled love story surrounded by zombies.  The book asks us to examine the distinctions between surviving and living and asks us to think about what it means to be human.

Dead-Tossed Waves is an amazing book that kept my heart racing and my mind whirring.  I really hope there is a sequel.


  1. oh i've been hanging out to read this, sounds great can't wait to get my hands on it!

  2. yes! i got it on my reading list.

    P.S. have you read any Tamora Pierce books? ALL of her books are based on female protagnists (Keladry of Mindelan is my favorite)

    i also loved Reggie Halloway from the Devouring by Simon Holt <3

  3. Cassie, thanks for the suggestions, I'll have to check those out!

  4. I am reading this book now, and will definitely post another comment after I am finished. I do agree with your comment about the second generation. I was sure that was what this book was going to be. So far, I am rather surprised that isn't the case! :) More to come later...

  5. I really want to read this one. I loved Serena from "Undone." I've got a review of that book here: