I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Baby Teeth by Zoje Stage
Published by St Martin's Press on July 17, 2018
Sweetness can be deceptive.
She’s the sweet-but-silent angel in the adoring eyes of her Daddy. He’s the only person who understands her, and all Hanna wants is to live happily ever after with him. But Mommy stands in her way, and she’ll try any trick she can think of to get rid of her. Ideally for good.
She loves her daughter, really, but after years of expulsions and strained home schooling, her precarious health and sanity are weakening day by day. As Hanna’s tricks become increasingly sophisticated, and Suzette's husband remains blind to the failing family dynamics, Suzette starts to fear that there’s something seriously wrong, and that maybe home isn’t the best place for their baby girl after all.
5 shining stars for Baby Teeth!
Wow, what an intense read. I realize that this book is meant to be shocking with it’s disturbing content. With that being said, it still had amazing writing, well thought out and complex characters, and a very gripping story. In this review, I think it is important that I disclose that I am not a mother. I do not have children (just fur babies) and that may be why my review is the way it is. I don’t know if I would feel the same way if I had children, especially in the age range that Hannah is supposed to be. Although I am rating Baby Teeth 5 stars, I would not add it to my favorites shelf. I enjoyed my time reading the book and will definitely be recommending it to friends and family that I think may enjoy it but it’s not one that I would read again. The content can be difficult to read through and I know that a lot of people will not agree with me.
Normally, I do not like alternating perspective’s in books but it worked here. My favorite perspective to read is Hannah’s, I loved how the author wrote her chapters as though they truly were through the scope of a child’s mind. Hannah is a very imaginative child and her chapters reflect the vast extent of her intelligence and creative mind. When read mixed with Suzette’s chapters you realize that although intelligent, Hannah is still a young child and her interpretation of events that occur is not always how they appear through her lens of thinking.
Suzette’s chapters were heartbreaking to read. I can’t imagine what it was like being in her shoes, first with her own medical issues and then with the calculated attacks against her life by her child. I enjoyed seeing her work through her emotions and being let into the inner workings of her mind. Although not a mother myself, I was still able to connect with her as a character and really feel that inner conflict between wanting to love your child but at the same time, hating them with all you have. I was at times frustrated with Suzette not fully disclosing to Alex everything that was going on at home but I also understood her lack of desire to, especially if he wasn’t going to believe it anyway. I am sad that it had to get to the point that it did before he was willing to accept what everyone had been saying as truth.
The pacing of the book was done really well. I did not want to stop reading and each end of a chapter made it so you didn’t want to stop. So you would read the next chapter hoping that it will be a better stopping point and then the cycle would start again. This book is definitely a page turner, you never know what Hannah is going to do next.
As Hannah’s actions became more and more violent, I found myself racing through the book. Desperate to finish to see how the author could possibly end this book, because I knew that there was no way that this situation could end well. When I reached the end, I found myself dissatisfied with how it turned out. It is obvious that the intent is for a second book to tie up all the loose ends but I was kind of hoping that Baby Teeth would be a standalone.