• River of Teeth

  • River of Teeth Series, Book 1
  • By: Sarah Gailey
  • Narrated by: Peter Berkrot
  • Length: 4 hrs and 1 min
  • 4.0 out of 5 stars (161 ratings)

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River of Teeth  By  cover art

River of Teeth

By: Sarah Gailey
Narrated by: Peter Berkrot
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Publisher's Summary

In the early 20th century, the United States government concocted a plan to import hippopotamuses into the marshlands of Louisiana to be bred and slaughtered as an alternative meat source. This is true.

Other true things about hippos: They are savage, they are fast, and their jaws can snap a man in two. This was a terrible plan.

Contained within this volume is an 1890s America that might have been: a bayou overrun by feral hippos and mercenary hippo wranglers from around the globe. It is the story of Winslow Houndstooth and his crew. It is the story of their fortunes. It is the story of his revenge.

©2017 Sarah Gailey (P)2017 Tantor

What listeners say about River of Teeth

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Demented fun

This was a fun, strange, and engrossing story about a different type of caper. Um, I mean "operation."

I was almost immediately drawn into the alternate history author Sarah Gailey created in River of Teeth. The characters are well rounded and interesting, even the hippos. If I had to choose a favorite character though, I would choose Archie. I would love to either be her, or have her on my side. Hero is a close second, but each of the crew, even Neville, made me smile at times.

Peter Berkrot did an excellent job narrating this story.

5 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Tombstone meets queer Firefly set astride domesticated hippos!

In this cowboy caper (sorry, ‘operation’), all the rollicking, gunslinging, mercenaries of your favorite Wild West tropes spoil for revenge, riches, and love in the “Wild South”.

**Spoilers Ahead**

When I first heard of River of Teeth, I was prepared for an interesting and fun take on history; and early on in the book, I eagerly anticipated an amusing Merry Band of Scoundrels cast of characters.

I was NOT prepared for such golden nuggets as a deadly lesbian assassin who just so happens to be heavily pregnant; a brilliant non-binary chemist who is also the central love interest; an unapologetically bisexual Clint Eastwood hero; and our ragtag group casually noticing not a single “white boy” in their group.

If you love westerns, alternative history, or casual queer & POC representation, set yer sights on The River of Teeth!

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Disappointment

Story premise has a great subject. I considered this a good bet but was concerned that the story was on 4 hours. Once I started listening I found the narrator to be shallow and southern accents were offensive. In spite of the narrator the story proved to be more make believe situations than what would be expected. My only comment to this is that a hippopotamus is a vegetarian and attaches mainly for protection of its area or herd. The actual riding of a hippo was ok except for the reality of the hippo having to continuously submerge in water to prevent dehydration. I felt this situation was poorly explained and poorly described.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A good time filler for a rushed plot

I went into reading this with an open mind, I thought to myself “cowboys but with hippos.” And for a while it was a fun story. If I could go back I would add a few thing so or take a few things out. When it came to final climatic battle I felt it was Luke warm at best. The full feel of the romance itself felt forced or pushed. “Diversity for diversity” sake.

Overall. It was a good time filler while I’m at work. But nothing I’d give a second listen to.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Best audiobook ever.

This is the best audiobook/performance I've ever listened to. Buy it. Do it now. Love your best life.

1 person found this helpful

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good premise, mediocre writing

narrator was great but the story was fairly weak due to the mediocre writing. I really appreciated the premise but I felt like the story didn't tie into the setting enough. But overall it was a fine way to spend a few hours. not my favorite book but it wasn't bad and I don't regret reading it.

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  • M
  • 05-20-22

Fun and Short

the narrator was PERFECT for this book.

a hippo is my spirit animal so I had to read this. I was not disappointed.

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Not what I was expecting. So much better.

I'm always dubious of alternative history. Often they try to play with the politics and recreate a world they believe is superior to this one.River of Teeth does none of that, leaving the political and the Historical out of it and delving into the real life of the world these characters live in. Each person I met in the story felt like I could meet or read about in history books. While I want to know so much more about Hero, the listener/reader is given just enough to keep them interested and to care for them. I cannot wait to listen to Taste of Marrow.

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Hippo Caper

This story is just really fun, fast paced and compelling. I loved Upright Women Wanted and this story is just as good. My only complaint is I felt that this could have been a longer story but there is a sequel so it’s not that big of a deal. If a hippo cowboy caper sounds like your cup of tea, this is the story for you.

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  • Owen
  • 06-29-21

Enjoyable adventure

An enjoyable and well-performed narrative with a rollicking good adventure at its core. At times, it may seem corny as it seeks to parody the classic Western in some ways, but this is only a mark its success in parodying an already corny genre and does not detract from the tale. Worth trying.

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  • Tim
  • 05-22-21

Action packed, nuanced characters, fresh world

This was a writing group recommendation and I really loved it. It's an action-packed caper of an adventure (even though the main character would disagree), with a diverse cast of characters who live on a nineteenth century Mississippi River populated by hippos!

I got on very well with the writing style, which is accessible and tightly-paced, and extremely visual and sensory. It has a nice balance of action and dialogue.

It has the edges of steampunk to me too, and is a truly inventive take on alternate history. The plot is a gripping revenge tale full of intrigue and with nice twists and turns. The ending was satisfying, and makes we want to read the rest of the series.

Other things: Love the names of the characters. The voice actor also really captures their unique voices.

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  • L
  • 05-02-18

Fantastic & Fun!

A great opening to this rip-roaring story, with adventure, betrayal and extremely compelling characters! Berkrot really brings them to life too, with his mix of accents and voices. The premise is top notch, and the story delivers.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-11-18

Not bad...

I wanted to like this a lot more than I did. I like my books trashy and fun with just a wisp of gravitas, but this one was missing that all-important wisp. A hit and a near-miss.