Title: Anna Dressed in Blood
Author: Kendare Blake
Publisher: Tor Teen
Published: August 30th 2011
Series: Anna #1
Source: hardcover (borrowed)
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Summary: Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.
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.
Review: Anna Dressed in Blood really took me by surprise! I wasn't expecting much from this book, I thought it would be amateur and eye-roll worthy. I am someone who doesn't believe in the supernatural and was pretty reluctant to buy this book. Luckily, I saw it at the library so no harm trying right?
Let's get the negatives out of the way first: The first half was scarier than the second half. I usually read at night so it took me quite awhile to get through Anna Dressed in Blood because I had to keep stopping. It really isn't a great idea to read hair-raising descriptions at 2am.
Anyhow, I didn't really like the romance factor here in ADB. I would say that it was forced and weird. There was no chemistry between Anna and Cas, they hardly talked about anything other than how Anna got killed etc. And she is like 70!? Isn't it weird for a teenager to make out with a 70 year old? I didn't really like how Blake kept pushing for the romance that was just non-existent. Also, nothing much was happening between Carmel and Thomas, the romance junkie in me was a little sad. :(
Another thing I didn't really like was that there were a few plot holes here and there that were not explained too well. It was kind of confusing whenever I thought back about it but I guess it wasn't major because the novel flowed pretty well.
Lastly, we knew practically nothing about the other characters which made the book 2D. Only Anna and Cas were interesting, the rest of them were just there...
What I liked:
1) How creepy it was! The descriptions were truly awesome, especially when you try and visualise it *shudders*
2) Anna is pretty kick ass!!!
3) It was pretty entertaining and that is the whole point of reading anyway.
I don't really get why this book has to have a sequel, I thought it was a good ending. I guess I am just not interested in the whole romance aspect. To me this was a standalone, I would most probably not read the sequel.
My prediction for book #2: Anna is going to rise from the 'dead' or whatever since she's already dead. Cas decides to stay in town but he has to answer his calling in life (killing ghosts) so throughout the whole book he struggles back and forth between true love and his calling. THE END. or Anna becomes his assistant and they travel around the country busting ghosts. AND THEY LIVE HAPPILY EVER AFTER.
Recommended for people who don't usually read paranormal.