Book Review Of “Baby Teeth” By Zoje Stage @stmartinspress
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 (Photo and Synopsis from Goodreads)
Thank you to St. Martins Press and Netgalley for the free copy, in exchange of an honest review. All Opinions are my own.
Here is my blunt honesty. I am torn with this one, at first I loved it. I loved crazy Hanna, she creeped me the hell out, I had dreams the first night I read this, about my own four-year olds behaving like Hanna. I liked Suzette, I enjoyed watching her struggle with Hanna, and I found her reactions to Hanna, completely realistic. I mean hell, if this devil child was mine, I’m pretty sure I’d be freaking out. I strongly disliked Alex, I did not agree with his character, choosing to believe his daughter over his wife, and turning a blind eye, and simply living like ignorance is bliss.
The things Hanna does to her mom, are horrifying. There is one point where they all go to an urgent care, and Alex (the father) is accused of abuse, and once they found out the daughter was actually the monster, the Doctors and Nurses drop the subject and rush the family out. Now where is the justice in that? Quick to turn on an adult, but want no part in it, when the child is abusing the parent? I wonder how likely that would happen in real life?
So at one point in this book for about 100 pages or so, I became insanely bored, I’m not sure why, other than I wanted to find out the outcome, was Alex going to realize his wife was right? Was Suzette going to die at the hands of Hanna? What was going to happen to all of them? I felt like it became drawn out. And then it caught my interest again, and then it was over. And I still don’t know how I feel about the ending, part of me thought it was brilliant, and part of me thought it was terrible.
Was this book original, and creative? Yes it was. Was it executed well? I think it could have been better. But I still enjoyed it, even when I felt it lagged. It was a creepy, tripped out story, that little girl really freaked me out, and it was nice to read something different.