Teeth by Hannah Moskowitz
A gritty, romantic modern fairy tale from the author of Break and Gone, Gone, Gone. Be careful what you believe in.
Rudy’s life is flipped upside-down when his family moves to a remote island in a last attempt to save his sick younger brother. With nothing to do but worry, Rudy sinks deeper and deeper into loneliness and lies awake at night listening to the screams of the ocean beneath his family’s rickety house.
Then he meets Diana, who makes him wonder what he even knows about love, and Teeth, who makes him question what he knows about anything. Rudy can’t remember the last time he felt so connected to someone, but being friends with Teeth is more than a little bit complicated. He soon learns that Teeth has terrible secrets. Violent secrets. Secrets that will force Rudy to choose between his own happiness and his brother’s life.
Publishes in US: Jan 1 2012
Source: Simon Pulse
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I was drawn to this book because I liked the sound of the premise, a sick brother and secrets of his new friend that might make him have to chose between saving the two.
Teeth delivered on so many levels, though I must say, this is a strange book. And being in Rudy's head felt pretty choppy at times... or maybe it was her particular writing style in this book. Because I felt like there really weren't a whole lot of transitions, it was from one thing to the next... but with Rudy, the main character's state of mind, it very well could be intentional.
This is not my favorite that Hannah wrote, but I still think it was definitely worth my time to read it. It took me on a journey and made me question what I would do if I were in Rudy's position, or Diana's mom's, or especially in the character Teeth's places. For me it wasn't a book that I could just read in one sitting, because it was dark, Rudy had a fairly dirty mouth, and it was deep stuff that I was reading.
Teeth is a modern day fairy tale, and it has mystical or fantasy elements that are at first a little hard to believe, but Rudy had a hard time with it as well, so that's doable. There is something special about this town that heals, and once Rudy meets some of the strange people in the town, like Teeth, he is forced to make some very hard choices, and I wondered many times how or if there would be a happy ending.
In this very dark book, the ending didn't come how I would have wanted, but I think that it is the only fitting way to wrap the story up. Though I was still left with questions because I wasn't really sure how things were left between Diana and Rudy and Rudy and Teeth. I had many ideas, but none of them were really confirmed. I see a lot of clues in the story to make it point to one thing, but it never really said.
Bottom line: Strange but worthwhile book about tough issues and choices.
Could you hurt someone else to save your brother (or close family if no brother or sister)?