Thursday, October 4, 2012

Anna Dressed in Blood Review

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

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.

3 out of 5 stars

Anna Dressed in Blood is the first book in the Anna series.

Cas is a ghost hunter. With his special athame, he "kills" dangerous ghosts all over the world. When he hears the story of Anna Dressed in Blood, he moves to Canada to kill her. There's something different about her, though, and he finds that he doesn't want to kill her as much as set her free.

I have to say that I didn't care for Cas, especially at the beginning. Despite the fact that he doesn't have friends and never stayed in one place more than a few months, he seemed to think he was the expert on people and their most stereotypical traits. Not only that, but he judged them all because of it, like he was just so above everyone. As time went on and he actually stopped judging enough to make friends, he became more tolerable but more whiny. Anna was pretty awesome and her story was really interesting. The best part of the book was when we find out what happened to her.

While I didn't care for Cas from the beginning, I thought that the story started off really well. There was murder and evil in gory fashion, however I did not find it scary. I can't really hold that against the book, though, because I just do not scare easily and tend to not think things are scary that other people do. The problem for me was that the story kind of devolved into a more typical YA book a little more than halfway through. I just couldn't get into the Cas/Anna thing because it started making the book feel like an instalove YA. I also didn't really get into the bad guy... maybe because I felt that the back story related to it made it feel like something that should be at the end of the series, not the first book. It seemed way to easy, too.

I was disappointed in Anna Dressed in Blood. I guess I just read so much raving about this book that I had incredibly high expectations. The story sounded awesome, but wasn't nearly as great as it sounded. I was really expecting more horror, but I don't think it really went all the way there. The writing was good, though, and I probably will read the second book.

*Picture and description from Goodreads 

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