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Preview — Sharp Teeth by Toby Barlow
An ancient race of lycanthropes has survived to the present day, and its numbers are growing. Bent on dominance, rival factions are initiating the down-and-out of L.A. into their ranks. Caught in the middle are Anthony, a kindhearted, lovesick dogcatcher, and the object of his affection: a female werewolf who has abandoned her pack.
about the good things in life
and the bad.
Oh, you know:
Blood, sex, death, hunger, frenzy
Is to structure his story
as 308 pages
of free-verse poetry
whose style this preview crudely mimics.
Oh gentle goodreads friend
I haven't even told you
the best part.
What do you call something
that defies all genres?
follows the lives
of A PACK OF FREAKIN' WEREWOLVES
raping, feeding, and pillaging
in present-day L...more
The pack feels something’s up
things feel different, shifted
Knowing someone isn’t coming back
doesn’t mean you ever stop waiting.
He would follow. He would, honest,
but when he held her, dancing,
everything felt good but
not everything felt right.
Love and hunger
Her appetite has become tremendous in every way
they make love in the kitchen, the living room,
and she eats huge plates of pasta.
Her teeth hit his neck
The last things he sees...more
They are not really werewolves or at least they are not your daddy’s were...more
he wanted to breathe real life into every memory
but still somehow let go,
he wanted to become something else
while holding onto everything he had.
Maybe it is because I wasn't really expecting too much from this book that I was as blown away by it as I was. Sharp Teeth sort of reminded me of The Suitors (Karen's review of The Suitors is much better than mine for a feeling of the book).
At first the format of the book felt a little gimmicky. The...more
In this awesome, exuberant, first book Toby Barlow strips away the city's thin veneer of civilization and lays bare its raw, violent, lycanthropic underbelly. It's the cross-species love story between dogcatcher Anthony and his damaged werewolf lover, which unfolds against a backdrop of drugs, murder, revenge, and the battl...more
a fan of verse even free verse. I like proper grammar and
paragraphs and commas. So I was wary
reading this book when I saw
crazy staggering lines of text wandering around my nook screen.
a friend's review made me reconsider
and so I read the book and I mostly liked it.
Mostly because I still don't like verse
even when it's free. Also because I want to see the picture that is
being painted not just be told
what it's of. I feel like too much
of Sharp Teeth was
I sure hope Quentin Tarantino is not too busy the year they decide to make this movie, because this is perfect for him. What the movie will lose – the book’s musical language – Mr. Tarantino could replace with his intense visual rhythms. It could be awesome. A noir-ish tale of werewolves in L.A., crime bosses and drug lords, a kindly dogcatcher, rival gangs (not human), and some sociopathic revenge. Lots of violence,...more
When I was assigned to read this book, I was told that it was a book about werewolves written in verse. Immediately, I knew that this concept could either be really cool or be really pretentious and annoying. Unfortunately, it was the latter for me.
Usually when I dislike a book, I can still kind of understand why it appeals to people. This is one of the few books that, no matter how many positive reviews of it I read, I just … don't really get it, to be honest. It's not t...more
Then I opened the book and thought "Poetry? WTF? I thought this was paranormal-romance-ish book about werewolves... Oh well, I'll give a try."
And I am glad I did. The story is fairly typical but the style in which it is told makes this book rate so highly with me. The free-verse format reminded me of the Ellen Hopkin...more
Or they don’t like things that rhyme unless it’s rap or some children’s story, which of course means they like it b...more
If you're anything like...more
Mr. Barlow, I applaud you. You wrote an epic poem about werewolves. Well done, sir. Well done.
This book is really weird, but I really liked it. I suppose "epic poem about werewolves" is, by definition, going to be bizarre. So I'm not terribly surprised that it was weird. It was also really well done - there's a lot of great imagery and lines that really stuck with me. It didn't always read like a poem, but it didn't bother me in the le...more
To hell with that. It's probably hard to imagine a well-written book about werewolves, but you'll have to read to understand. Definitely inventive and an entertaining page-turner, but moving and beautiful at the same time. It'll transport you to a different (yet familiar) world while you're reading it.
Maybe it's my chemically-regulated hormones speaking, but...more
Barlow tells the story of werewolves, drug dealers, pounds, and true love in free verse.
The craziest thing is that it works.
While not as good a poet as say Coleridge or Browning, there is something powerful in some of Barlow's verse.
"Anthony in love is unlikely/in its grace/like a drunk with a magic trick./There's no reason it should work, but it does."
Strangely in book that shouldn't work, Barlow comments deeply on the human condition.
What I love about this book: There's nothing better than a weird-ass premise. This one is sublime. I beautiful flow of words drew me right in. I like that you begin with a song and end with a song. I enjoyed the characters, every one, and related to them despite their foreign circumstances because you made them human.
What I love best is the poetry itself. A writer can make...more
In fact, the book's format turned out to be one of its greatest strengths, as I quickly gathered after the first few pages. The line breaks and pronounced rhythm of poetry make it perfect for emphasizing a choice phrase or idea, and the relatively small amount of text on each page contributes greatly to the feeling of motion.
The book is ostensibly...more
The book reads like a noir thriller in an epic poetry style. It is one of the more quotable books I have read, and the reviews on the dust jacket deliver additional praise. And this is a first novel for the author, Toby Barlow. There are books that you start reading and don't want...more
Glücklicherweise gibt noch Autoren wie Toby Barlow, die sich vorgenommen haben Bücher mit mehr Anspruch und vor allem mehr Biss zu schreiben. Obwohl hier auch die Romantik nicht zu kurz kommt.
Kurz zusammengefasst geht es in "Sharp Teeth" um Werwolf-Gangs, die sich i...more
I think there is quite a lot of talent about to burst forth from this young writer.
I think the format was a little distracting. I know next to nothing about verse, but it seemed less to be a novel in verse than non-traditionally formatted prose. I appreciate the effort in this and had no trouble reading it; however I do wonder if it took a bit away from the punch of the characters. Perha...more
It's just as well that I didn't realize it, as I'm usually turned away by anything even remotely resembling poetry. But this didn't read like poetry at all. It had a certain flair to it, but I just read it without trying to...more
Now that I got my one-liner out of the way, Sharp Teeth is an original horror tale that never lets the reader off. I read it in two sittings, interrupted only by the fact that my wife and I had tickets for a jazz concert and she wouldn't let me stay home and read the book! The use of free verse was a bit daunting to me at first but after a few pages I got into the rhythm and stayed entranced. The book sometimes reads more like an organized crime no...more