Baby Teeth by Zoje Stage

Mon, 07/30/2018 - 1:33pm -- JGranatino

Baby Teeth updates the "evil child" trope of Rosemary's Baby, The Omen, and The Bad Seed with a truly frightening story of a seven-year-old girl who has all the hallmarks of a future serial killer. Hanna is an intentionally mute girl whose refusal to talk comes not from any physical or psychological disability, but from her feeling that most people are too stupid to bother talking to. The novel alternates from chapters told in Hanna's cool, calculating point of view as she develops her plan to get rid of her annoying mommy to chapters that follow Suzette, Hanna's guilt-ridden mother, who wonders if bad parenting caused Hanna's problems. Hanna's voice seems more sophisticated than the average seven-year-old, but then, average seven-year-olds are probably not adopting the persona of a 17th-century French girl executed for witchcraft. Whether it's entirely realistic or not, Baby Teeth is a darkly engrossing summer read that will keep you up waiting to see who wins the power struggle: conflicted mother or amoral child. 

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