Afflicted with a chronic debilitating condition, Suzette Jensen knew having children would wreak havoc on her already fragile body. Nevertheless, she brought Hanna into the world, pleased and proud to start a family with her husband Alex. Estranged from her own mother, Suzette is determined to raise her beautiful daughter with the love, care, and support she was denied.
But Hanna proves to be a difficult child. Now seven-years-old, she has yet to utter a word, despite being able to read and write. Defiant and anti-social, she refuses to behave in kindergarten classes, forcing Suzette to homeschool her. Resentful of her mother’s rules and attention, Hanna lashes out in anger, becoming more aggressive every day. The only time Hanna is truly happy is when she’s with her father. To Alex, she’s willful and precocious but otherwise, the perfect little girl, doing what she’s told. Suzette knows her clever and manipulative daughter doesn’t love her. She can see the hatred and jealousy in her eyes. And as Hanna’s subtle acts of cruelty threaten to tear her and Alex apart, Suzette fears her very life may be in grave danger.
Baby Teeth is an extremely disturbing and downright creepy story about a sweet little 7-year-old girl named Hanna who hasn’t spoken a word since the day she was born. Hanna loves her daddy, Alex, so incredibly much. She worships the ground he walks on. She also wants her daddy all to herself, but there’s one little problem, her mommy. Hanna despises her mother, Suzette, and is convinced that she is standing in the way of Hanna being able to get all of daddy’s love and attention. Mommy must be eliminated no matter what.
Baby Teeth is a book written by Zoje Stage kept me extremely curious about a debut novel. The book is dark and very disturbing, and there are many terrifying and dysfunctional scenes within it. I found myself so completely engrossed and entertained with how devious and manipulative Hanna was towards her mother, and both the mother and daughter, which are our two main characters, are well developed and very believable.
As the story progresses, Hanna’s character turns darker. Suzette homeschools Hanna because she is mute and has been expelled from multiple schools. She is starting to notice more and more that sweet little Hanna may not be so sweet after all. Her behavior is disturbing in and outside the home. But clever Hanna is manipulative enough to never let Daddy see her evil doings. It’s alarming to watch Hanna’s behavior become more sophisticated in the art of manipulating her father, or as she likes to call him, her daddy.
Once Suzette starts mentioning to Alex about their daughter’s behavior he doesn’t believe it. How can his sweet little girl do any of the creepy things that Hanna is being accused of? Even when the schools tell the parents about Hanna’s schemes, Alex isn’t willing to consider it. Suzette, on the other hand, is a woman who has suffered much medical and emotional turmoil in her life and has had to wrestle with a mother of her own who could not care about her. When Hanna finally speaks, she informs Suzette that she’s not Hanna but Marie-Anne Dufosset, a teen accused of being a witch who was burned to death back in history. Suzette questions her parenting while Hanna makes plans and calculates her next move.
I have to say that if I were Suzette I would have no idea what I would do in this situation. A child that you love with all your heart who wants no more than to rip out your very heart and watch you die. I think if this did happen to me I’d have set up a hidden camera and taped some of the creepy ways this kid behaved in and shove it in daddy’s face! A very good book, dark, frightening, and very disturbing, so read at your own risk!
Title: Baby Teeth
Author: Zoje Stage
Published Date: July 16, 2018
Genre: Horror Fiction, Psychological Thriller
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Format: Hardcover, Kindle
Pages: 320 pages
Reviewed by: Sarah Hopkins
Our Rating: 4.2 /5
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