Friday, 31 October 2014

Review: Anna Dressed in Blood (Anna #1) by Kendare Blake Synopsis:
Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.

So did his father before him, until he was gruesomely murdered 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. They follow legends and local lore, destroy the murderous dead, and keep pesky things like the future and friends at bay.

Searching for a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas expects the usual: track, 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, now stained red and dripping with 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.

Yet she spares Cas's life.

Everything about this book had me dying to read it; from the title, to the gorgeous cover, to the intriguing tag line “Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-kills-people story”.

And I’m so glad I did! It had moments when the horror aspect definitely took hold of the story and some of the descriptions were definitely cringe-worthy but that only made me love it more, and if you’re also a horror-junkie then this is definitely the book for you.

Romance also played a big part but wasn’t nearly as noticeable as everything else going on, particularly since Cas was doing the boy’s thing and denying his feelings right till the end… *sigh* I thought he was a great character and easy to understand with how the ghost-hunting side of his life distances himself from living a “normal life” with “normal” (or simply not dead) people.

At first I didn’t understand how this could be something Cas and Anna relate on but I think it worked perfectly and also gave a lot more depth to Anna’s character. She wasn’t simply a demonic murdering ghost, though no one can deny that she has brutally killed her fair share of people.

Along with these main protagonists there were a lot more side characters which I didn’t expect and they were all great in their own ways; I even warmed up to Carmel (who I kept reading as Caramel, probably because it was late at night and I was hungry…) after I found out she wasn’t interested in Cas. Otherwise I might have set Anna Dressed in Blood on her.

In the end this book started and finished with a bang, so I am once again dying to read the sequel.
Favourite Quotes:
“Don’t be afraid of the dark, Cas. But don’t let them tell you that everything that’s there in the dark is also there in the light. It isn’t.” 

“But hey, at least we’ll have this strange story to tell, love and death and blood and daddy-issues. And holy crap, I’m a psychiatrist’s wet dream.” 

“Land of the Dead? Is that what you dream about?” she asks. “Boy who kills ghosts for a living?”
“No. I dream about penguins doing bridge construction. Don’t ask why.” 

“You make me want things I can't have.”

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