Throwback Review from 2011!
Anna Dressed in Blood is a YA paranormal ghost story by author Kendare Blake.
Cas is a teenage ghost killer. He has inherited his father's powerful athame, the knife he uses to send deadly ghosts out of this dimension, after he died. And with each kill he is training himself to hunt down the one that brought down his Dad...
His Mom is a kitchen witch, selling mystical stuff on the go, and helping to keep the two of them safe. She's along for the ride somewhat reluctantly, but she knows that just like with her husband - this is Cas's choice, and he's good at it. They move from place to place following legends and leads - and the latest brings them to a town harboring a ghost that is more dangerous than ever - Anna Dressed in Blood.
She's unlike any other ghost he's encountered before. She's fascinating, extraordinary and wears the same dress she was wearing in 1958 when she was brutally murdered. And it drips, neverendingly, with blood. Cas witnesses what she's able to do - how she kills mercilessly with rage.
No one who sees her ever lives to speak about it.
But yet... she lets Cas live.
And there begins Cas's toughest mission yet.
Anna Dressed in Blood has a fantastic, creepy, sad, yet fun opener that gives you a hint at how awesome the book is going to be. The best part? The book follows through!
Cas is an excellent protagonist - he's witty, intelligent, and savvy - fun and interesting to follow. He's like a mix of the hot guys from Supernatural and something entirely new.
Twisty, freaky, and legitimately scary - if Anna Dressed in Blood were a movie, the gore would make it R-rated. Yet Cas's sarcasm and unflappability keep it from becoming too much. The writing maintains a fun and entertaining tone, but allows a deliciously dark edge.
Anna, our title character, is a ghost unlike any other and she astounds both me AND Cas. We are presented with our hero's dilemma and mystery - all of which is very, very intriguing. There's an addictive, but intensely spooky, feel as Cas's obsession with Anna washes over to the reader. It's hard to say too much without giving anything away...
Anna Dressed in Blood is obstinately original, wonderfully bizarre, refreshing, and extremely well-done. It's deeper than you'd initially expect, but does provide you with depth and gravitas to make it even more enjoyable. The end was a little rushed for such an amazing buildup, but it was still great.
This is the kind of story that YA paranormal lovers will fall for - and adult fans as well! Everybody else? Well, you should still give it a shot because there's always a chance you'll be surprised and find that a genre that you didn't think you were a fan of convinces you otherwise!
And me? Well, I am just hoping there's going to be a sequel!!!