Cover Image: What Big Teeth

What Big Teeth

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Member Reviews

I loved the last third of this book. I did not love the first two thirds of the book. I think there was a big pacing problem at the beginning. I felt like I had all of the info I needed to get what was happening, but since it just kept going I started to doubt what I knew. Once this shifted and more information was revealed it was a much more engrossing read. 

Things that worked well for me: Atmosphere - SO CREEPY, Shirley Jackson vibes - especially in the last few chapters. Big We Have Always Lives in the Castle vibes, creative narration styles at the end.  

Things that didn't work for me: Pacing, I didn't love any of the characters - Rhys and Miklos were probably my favorites - but I did not like Eleanor. The vague time period (post WWII?)? 

One other big thing to note is that this is not a werewolf book. The title gives off Little Red Riding Hood vibes, and werewolves/wolves are a part of the story, but there is a whole magic system and creatures outside of that as well.
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This was an intriguing and enjoyable read.   It kept pulling me along, as I waited to find out more about what Eleanor or Grandmere were, as well as Arthur.
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Szabo does an excellent job of establishing the mood in her impressive debut, leaving the reader wary and often terrified of what's hiding in the dark corners of the Zarrin house. She quickly strikes an excellent balance between confusion and avoiding alienation; we don't have all the answers to questions developed in the first few chapters until the very end of the book, but Szabo manages to pull us in so quickly that you don't mind going along for the ride. I wish we'd spent more time with the other side characters - Eleanor's mother, sister, cousin, and grandfather all have pretty convenient reasons for not spending much time with Eleanor, and while they all serve a role in the book's emotional resolution, the oft-repeated theme of the importance of the Zarrin's family survival would have been more impactful if we actually spent more time with the Zarrin family. That said, the atmosphere Szabo creates is the star of this novel, making this perfect for anyone looking for a break from the common YA traditions.
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Rose Szabo's debut WHAT BIG TEETH is a bit hard to describe. It's a bit of "What if Rian Johnson's KNIVES OUT met werewolves and magic in a historical setting?" but also not that at all. 

It is the story of Eleanor Zarrin, a young woman who was sent away from her family to a boarding school for much of her childhood, and is returning home after a bad incident at school. Once home, she faces hostility and confusion in a family that moved on without her. After a family member dies, Eleanor must learn how to help run her family's household, taking manners into her own hands. Ultimately, she gets more than she bargained for, and not only has to fix her mess, but learn who she is in the process. 

This book is one that I enjoyed, but felt like I was being kept in the dark while reading. This story takes place from Eleanor's POV, and both she and the reader spend a lot of time not knowing what's going on in the household. We are also given a somewhat incomplete picture of the setting and the warewolve-ness of the situation. This element ultimately made the book often confusing. 

On the other hand, this was an incredibly unique read. I've never really read anything like it and doubt that I will read anything quite like this again, and for that I am grateful. It was interesting, and when the action picked up around 65% of the way through, it was a tough book to put down!! 

All in all, this is a book I would recommend, because why not!
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This was an interesting read. Not exactly what I was expecting, but I definitely enjoyed it. Was hooked from the first sentence.
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Right from the first page, this story just jumps right in. I love how the author - they just keep with the storyline and sprinkles in character development, backstory, and tid bits of information for the reader. There has many stories with themes of acceptance from family. Whereas this novel dives deeper into themes of childhood memories, control, and closure. 
I have been blown away with this debut book from the author. I enjoyed the story but especially the writing style. They have an authentic voice and quality in telling a story. I love it when its least expected from a new author and who ever did the cover - did an amazing job. I can not wait to see what they write next! This review is my own honest opinion. Thank you publisher and Netgalley for the e copy.
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What Big Teeth is a fascinating tale that turns Little Red Riding Hood on its head. The reader is given a very informative glimpse of what Eleanor is and why her Grandma Persephone sent her to boarding school. It raises a lot of questions when you read it and Szabo reveals only a little information at a time, leaving the reader wondering what is going on in the Zarrin family. The plot is spectacular and the characters have the potential to be deeply interesting, but they are not as fleshed out as they could be. What Big Teeth is a quick read, so I think the story had the time to spend and would have benefited from  those explorations.
We see a lot of how Eleanor view’s her family’s opinion of her, but some glimpses into her family’s true feelings would have been an effective addition in building to the climax. While we learn more about the abilities of the other family members, it would have been interesting to explore through Eleanor’s eyes as she gets reacquainted with her estranged family members. 
The writing is inconsistently atmospheric, which is predominantly highlighted by how effective it is when it is present. Overall, it is a fun, fascinating read and I would recommend it for any readers that have an interest in classical fairytales and their re-imaginings.
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This book nails the gothic atmosphere which I found highly enjoyable. The characters were more hit or mess, especially the main character. The plot takes way too long to take of for my taste, and some of the storytelling gets wonky toward the end of the second act.

Having said that, the lore wrapped up in this story was creative and fun. I could have lived without that romance, though. 

Overall, a quick interesting journey into a gothic landscape. I would read another book by this author in a heartbeat.
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Unfortunately, I didn't enjoy this book at all. I loved the weird family aspect and them being werewolves and such, but the protagonist was really dull. Not to mention that it was very slow-burn and slow-moving that it started to become dull, honestly. Maybe others would enjoy it but I didn't.
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The beginning of this book is great. Really good set up of the mystery and introducing our main character. The book kind of falls apart as the family is introduced. Some characters, who I think I'm supposed to like, are just completely unlikable. I wish the last 2/3 of the book had been as strong as the first third.
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When I first picked up this book, I wasn't sure where it was going, but I soon found I couldn't put it down! I haven't read much gothic horror in YA books so I was unsure if it would really work, but it totally does! For fans of horror, they won't be disappointed, and there are plenty of mysteries that intrigue the reader as the plot unfolds.
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For a debut novel What Big Teeth took me by surprise – I was consumed with the need to know what was going on. So much of Eleanor and her family are shrouded in mystery. I went into this thinking (from the title) that it might be something along the lines of Red Riding Hood – that was not the case. It was so much better, so much more weird and creepy.

We slowly figure out the state of Eleanor’s family with Eleanor herself, who doesn’t recall much of her time spent with her family as a child. I will say one thing though, wolves are Eleanor’s least concern and nothing is what it seems in this family. I was NOT expecting the reveals towards the end of this book and yet I STILL have questions, which I cannot give voice to since I don’t want to spoil the fun for anyone.

What Big Teeth was such a wild ride from beginning to end and most of the time I had no idea what was going on or what would happen but I enjoyed every minute spent reading this book. I would highly recommend this book to readers who enjoy Gothic, ya, horror, low fantasy, and Rory Power’s books. I will be on the lookout for more books from Rose Szabo, to say the least. A huge thank you to Xpresso Book Tours, Rose Szabo, Farrar Straus and Giroux, and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this bizarre gothic fantasy! All opinions are my own.
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I loved the sort of feminist approach to this story. The mystery was great, and that cover... whoa. If you like a good horror novel, and if you want books like WILDER GIRLS, pick this one up. It is weird, wild, and wonderfully consumable.
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What Big Teeth is a debut gothic fantasy about Eleanor Zarrin and her monstrous family. After an incident at boarding school, Eleanor runs home to her family, hoping to find a safe haven from her mistake. What she finds is not quite what she remembers, and she finds it hard to fit in and discover her purpose amongst her strange relatives.

I have been wanting to add more horror and thrillers to my shelves, and I was really excited to read this one when I received an e-ARC for a book tour. When I first started it, it seemed like it was exactly what I was looking for: a mashup of horror and fantasy. I was so thrilled and I couldn’t put it down! Sadly, it didn’t stay that way. For most of the book I found I was often very confused and just plain bored. I really wanted to like this book, so I stuck it out until the end. It did improve a little, but I still didn’t love it. 

Overall, I did still like What Big Teeth at some points. It wasn’t what I was expecting, but there were still some parts that I enjoyed. The beginning and the end were the best parts, but I wish there was a bit more action in the middle. I would still like to try more books from this author if they continue to write, and I look forward to seeing what they write next.
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What Big Teeth is just the gothic novel that I was looking for. It is so dark and imaginative. It's like nothing else I have ever read. I love that Rose Szabo doesn't really tell you want anyone is, she describes them in great detail and your imagination takes over and builds the house and the family. It makes it so much more enjoyable! Eleanor and her whole family have such an interesting dynamic and no one is exactly as you think they are. It was very well written and I would love to read more of Rose Szabo. If you enjoy Tim Burton films, this would be the book for you!
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What Big Teeth is for fans of the show The Haunting of Hill House.  The same level of dark, eerie, creepiness is in this book.  It’s so strange that I don’t think your average teen will stick with it after the beginning unless they really like horror.  One must be in the mood for something unusual and monstrous.  The plot slows as one struggles to grasp what kind of world we are in, but if you can stick with it, the ending is strong.  You will not have read anything like this book.
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Eleanor has been at boarding school and away from her “wild” family for years. When she flees after a horrific accident, the only place to go is home. She’s never felt like she belonged, but her dying grandmother entrusts the family’s wellbeing to Eleanor, and she’ll have to keep these monsters together and embrace some of the wilder parts of herself if they’re going to survive.

Not gonna lie. I 85% chose this one because of the cover. I mean, look at it’s horrifying beauty. Beautiful colors, elements of a monster underneath. SOLD. I really enjoyed this one. It moved quickly, there was lots going on, and at its heart is the mystery about who Eleanor is and what she’s running from. Lots of twists and turns, family struggles, that are sometimes universal, whether you’re a monster, a human, or something in between.

I did get a tad lost a couple of times, because there are just so many characters in this big family and small town, but for the most part, I was able to stay on track, and it made for a nice treat to listen to during the workday. It’s out now, so if you need a bit of horror in your YA, check it out!
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What Big Teeth has to be the strangest book I’ve ever read. I honestly have never read anything like this, and the dark and bizarre atmosphere had me flipping pages to figure out what was going on. First off, let’s just take a moment to admire one of the creepiest, but most amazing covers out there. The cover is what first drew me in to this book and after the first chapter which was so weird, I knew this was going to be a wild ride.

Eleanor Zarrin, the main character, runs away from boarding school back home to her family in the woods. An incident happened at school, so she did the only thing she could she went back home. Right away we find out her family is not a normal family. She has been gone for years and her family acts like nothing has changed. Oh, and her family? The weirdest, strangest, most bizarre family ever, but I just loved how weird they were. Eleanor’s grandfather, father, sister, and cousin are all wolves, well they shapeshift into wolves. Eleanor’s grandmother is a witch, and her mother spends 90% of her day in a bathtub because she has polyps all over her body. Eleanor’s aunt does not speak at all and spends her days cleaning and cooking for everyone. The strange, but likeable family friend Arthur, always seems to be around and never leaves the property. Her family is a family of monsters. I think the best part about this family is that they are all normal in their eyes, they kind of remind me of the Addam’s family. No one bats an eye when grandfather turns half into a wolf to eat dinner, or that her mother sits in a tub wherever she is.

Shortly after returning home Eleanor’s grandmother dies and her dying words were for Eleanor to keep the family safe and don’t let any strangers in. No one in the family really likes Eleanor, but she wants to do what her grandmother asked so she starts taking control of the household. Her family seems somewhat disappointed in her because she isn’t a wolf like them, but she does have something strange about her. Eight years ago, her grandmother saw her do something and sent her away and to never come back. Since being home, we get to slowly figure out what Eleanor did eight years ago, as well as, what incident occurred at the boarding school.

Honestly, this book was a whirlwind full of just very strange things happening. I think it wasn’t until after fifty percent of the way through that i started to understand where things were going. The story did wrap itself up in a good way and I felt like a lot of my questions were answered. I just had trouble with needing more information throughout the book. I am not kidding when I say so many bizarre things happen in this book, but a lot of it is never in depth. It just occurs and then is never brought up again. I spent the majority of this book confused and frightened, but somehow it worked for me. It was over the top, and I still don’t really know what the point of the story was, but I did enjoy it. If the purpose was to be a completely off the wall book that had me completely intrigued to read it almost entirely in one sitting then it did the job.

I don’t even know if my review made sense, but if you want a totally peculiar book full of crazy and weird characters and an even weirder plot, I would highly suggest What Big Teeth.

3.5 stars rounded up to 4 stars.
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I was not prepared for how intense this book was going to be. It's chilling and dark, and kept me turning pages from beginning to end.
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I liked this book which is about a girl named Eleanor who leaves her boarding school after a terrible accident and tries to fit in with her monstrous relatives. She learns that she must keep the family together and to tame the darkness in her. I enjoyed the dark writing of this book and getting that cold feeling inside of you. The beginning was a little slow but the book started to pick up and got interesting. The pacing was off but I enjoyed the setting. It was kind of like The Adams Family but with wolves.

I enjoyed the characters in this book. Eleanor is the main character and I enjoyed reading about her. I liked her character development and seeing her connect with her family throughout the book. There were some amazing characters in this book but especially I loved the antagonist. Really didn’t see it coming. There is no romance with the main character but there are some side romances with the side characters.

I enjoyed this thrilling book that had so many family mysteries. There were some minor flaws but overall it was a good read. I can see why book boxes are curating this book. I recommend this book to those who love The Adams Family and The Wilder Girls.
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