Baby Teeth

Zoje Stage
Aug 13, 2018

This intriguing and disturbing book tells the story of Suzette, Alex and their 7 year old daughter, Hannah, who has quite literally become a threat to their existence. Baby Teeth is told in alternating chapters between Suzette and Hannah and you quickly realize that not all is right with their world. Hannah is mute and nothing Suzette has done, including numerous schools and eventually homeschooling, has helped Hannah learn to talk. Hannah's thoughts in the first chapter about speaking are: "Words, ever unreliable, were no one's friend. But if she was being honest, there was another reason -- a benefit, her silence is making mommy 'crazy'." Suzette has endured years of abuse from Hannah and she doesn't understand why her husband can't see that something is desperately wrong with their daughter. Alex doesn't seem to believe that Hannah can be the vindictive and violent person described by the schools she has been kicked out of, nor does he want to believe that she continues to torture Suzette by claiming she's a witch that was burned at the stake 500 years ago.

As the situation continues to escalate, and Suzette's own life is threatened, both parents question their ability to care for Hannah at home. They must quickly make a decision that will change all their lives. Is their daughter a sociopath, a psychopath, or a combination of both?

This is a gripping, psychological thriller so believable your heart will ache for all the characters. It might make you question your own beliefs about "Nature vs. Nurture" and who's to blame for violent behavior in children. I am giving it 4.5 stars based on its originality and character development. Give it a shot!!

Reviewed by Library Staff