Saturday, June 30, 2012

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Published: August 2011
Publisher: Tor Teen
Pages: 316
Copy Provided by: Bought
Summary: Goodreads


Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead. 

So did his father before him, until his gruesome murder by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father’s mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. Together they follow legends and local lore, trying to keep up with the murderous dead—keeping pesky things like the future and friends at bay.

When they arrive in a new town in search of a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas doesn’t expect anything outside of the ordinary: move, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he’s never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, but now stained red and dripping blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.

And she, for whatever reason, spares his life.

I've been meaning to read this for such a long time and happened across a copy on Google Books for only $3.99 so I purchased it on my phone.  I'm so easily influenced!  Turns out, it was a great purchase!  There is a reason why Kendare Blake won so many awards last year for this title.  She has won the YALSA 2012 Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Readers, YALSA 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults and was nominated for a Cybil Award for Fantasy & Science Fiction for Young Adults in 2011.  Goodness that's a lot of recognition for such a young writer!

Anna Dressed in Blood certainly held an A+ for creep factor.  It was like reading Supernatural for teens at one point (minus two older hunky men).  If you enjoy scary titles and can handle the gruesome and violent, this one should be to your liking.  I would caution younger readers because of the content and also the language.  It is freakishly scary but very enjoyable.  Kendare Blake has a wicked sense of sarcastic humor and an oh so elegant way of presenting it. 

"There's a blue light special on territorial jock in aisle four. "

We follow Cas through his newest Ghostbusting adventure in Thunder Bay, Ontario (go figure). Where he has a terrible time trying to rid the town of one of it's ghosts?  Why?  Because he's falling for her.  Take a little horror, mystery, swirl in some romance and bang!  You have Anna Dressed in Blood.  As the story progresses, the reader finds out why Anna is haunting her old home and how her story meshes with Cas's own story.  It's a read I would highly recommend, especially this summer before book #2 comes out in August.

***Warning - Spoiler**

As a girl, how does Carmel NOT notice that Cas has a thing for Anna?  Isn't it obvious?  Yes, it is odd having  a crush on someone who is dead...

Also, how is it that he can reach out and touch her?  My impression is that a ghost would be transparent rather than solid.

Lastly, what's up with the Dasani water references?

**Spoilers end**

Girl of Nightmares (Anna #2) is expected to come out in August 2012.  Please say hi if you see me waiting in line.  :D  I may just have a new favourite series here....

Hey, have you checked out our Canada Day Blog Hop yet?  We are giving away a copy of either - The Calling by Kelley Armstrong or Starling by Lesley Livingston.  This contest is international.  What are you waiting for??

1 comment:

  1. Great review. I don't remember the water reference...Can't wait for the sequel to this one! Loved it.