Book Review: The Dark And Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: The Dark And Hollow Places by Carrie RyanThe Dark and Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan
Also by this author: The Forest Of Hands And Teeth, The Dead-Tossed Waves, Daughter of Deep Silence
Series: The Forest Of Hands And Teeth #3
Also in this series: The Forest Of Hands And Teeth, The Dead-Tossed Waves
Published by Random House LLC on 2012
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Horror & Ghost Stories, Love & Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 376
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon

There are many things that Annah would like to forget: the look on her sister's face before Annah left her behind in the Forest of Hands and Teeth, her first glimpse of the Horde as they swarmed the Dark City, the sear of the barbed wire that would scar her for life. But most of all, Annah would like to forget the morning Elias left her for the Recruiters. Annah's world stopped that day, and she's been waiting for Elias to come home ever since. Somehow, without him, her life doesn't feel much different than the dead that roam the wasted city around her. Until she meets Catcher, and everything feels alive again. But Catcher has his own secrets. Dark, terrifying truths that link him to a past Annah has longed to forget, and to a future too deadly to consider. And now it's up to Annah: can she continue to live ina world covered in the blood of the living? Or is death the only escape from the Return's destruction? From the Hardcover edition.

The Previous Books:

Book One: The Forest of Hands And Teeth
Book Two: The Dead Tossed Waves

The Dark And Hollow Places is Carrie Ryan’s third book and the final read in her zombie trilogy. I thought The Dark And Hollow Places showed real maturity in writing. It feels like Ryan has hit her stride and given her readers a book of depth, darkness, and of course UNCONSECRATED.

Annah has lived on her own in the Dark City for three years, after Elias left to join the Recruiters. With a dark past and what seems to be a bleak future, Annah merely survives. Her day to day routine changes when she spots a girl who has her face, her twin Abigail/Gabry. Elias has returned with Annah’s twin and Catcher. Annah must decide is there still hope? Is life worth living in the face of so much death, cruelty and evil?

I totally dig characters like Annah. She is tough as nails and refuses to be cornered. Not only that, but she has this intense longing for freedom, which I think teens feel. I mean, who wants to be trapped under mom and dad’s rough when you are so close to independence and college? Yet, despite her rather tough exterior and the walls she has put up around herself, she cares very very deeply for those she loves. Annah is different from Gabry, in that she is initially brave. Bravery is not a trait she needs to develop. Rather, Annah is in deep need of help when it comes to her self-esteem. Covered with scars, Annah has very poor self-image. Again, something teenage girls can relate to. And I think therein lies the appeal of Annah to me. Although I am not surrounded by Unconsecrated, I can still relate to Annah on a deeper level.

Not only is Annah an awesome part of The Dark And Hollow Places but guess what this book is missing?? A contrived love triangle! Yes, that’s right, there isn’t a love triangle. Instead, the relationship has a chance to develop naturally — given the conditions. Friends, it is awesome. I really felt the relationship between Annah and a certain boy, use your brain and you can guess who, has a depth. Perhaps that depth comes out of this whole zombie nation thing, but whatever, I liked it.

Furthermore, The Dark And Hollow Places is a great adventure. As a reader, I was constantly asking myself, will the fabulous foursome make it out alive? What is up with that horde? And eeeeep, complete darkness. Those are hints. Just hints, no crazy spoilers.

Ryan takes the reader to some very dark places. I will admit, this book is more disturbing than the previous two, The Forest of Hands and Teeth and The Dead Tossed Waves. What the Recruiters do for fun on Sanctuary is chilling. Yet, do not let this detour you from reading The Dark And Hollow Places. It’s like they say in Batman, it is always darkest just before the dawn, and there are your moments of light. What I personally think is that when these scary parts happen it makes me appreciate the beautiful parts even more. Spoiler: Especially the image of the hot air balloons in the sky.

The Dark And The Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan is an excellent read. I wholeheartedly recommend it. Honestly, it ties with The Forest of Hands And Teeth for my favorite in the series. I honestly can’t wait to see what Ryan comes up with next, but I am sure it will be wonderful.

Other Reviews:

I haven’t seen any yet. If you review this, please drop me your review link so I can add it!

Purchase The Dark And Hollow Places here.

About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. Three cheers for a lack of love triangles!
    I still need to read Dead Tossed Waves, but I’m definitely looking forward to The Dark and Hollow Places. Annah sounds like such a great character!
    Lauren recently posted..Clarity by Kim HarringtonMy Profile

  2. Sara Dabel says

    I cant wait….going to buy it right now! These books are great! I loved them.

  3. Fantastic review! I am glad there wasn’t a love triangle too. It seriously annoyed me that after the first book, there was a love triangle in book two as well.

    I agree with you that this one had a darker tone. It reminded me of Mockingjay at times but in the end it felt more hopeful. It is sad to leave this series behind but I think Carrie Ryan saved her best for last. Annah was definitely my favorite heroine of the trilogy.

    Here is my review of The Dark and Hollow Places if you’d like to check it out.
    Christina T recently posted..Waiting on Wednesday 46My Profile

  4. Thank you for the great and non spoiler-y review. I’m dying to read this book and love reading all the great reviews!

  5. I really loved this book 🙂 read it less than a day! Honestly, i dont know why people say this book is darker or scarrier, its worse than the forest of hand and teeth, but the same as the dead tossed waves. I loved it 🙂 <3

  6. Love this review. This is probably my favorite out of all three. 🙂 Annah is such a sad but strong character, and I loved what she did at the end. I wanted for her to prevail so bad that I couldn’t stop reading until the end. So awesome. This book also reminded me of why I loved dystopian novels in the first place. I just posted my review. 😀
    Tina recently posted..The Dark and Hollow PlacesMy Profile

  7. Great review! You’re right about the book being a great adventure–something about Ryan’s writing makes me so invested that I can’t wait to find out what happens next.

    I reviewed this book this week, and that review can be found here:
    Clementine Bojangles recently posted..24 Book Review- This Girl is Different by JJ JohnsonMy Profile

  8. Great review!! I still need to read dead tossed waves, but the forest of hands and teeth was very good. My friend was reading the forest of hands and teeth and I thought she was insane, reading a book with such a strange, creepy and ominous title. Somehow she managed to convince me to read it- and I’m so glad I did. This book was really good.


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