Friday, October 21, 2011

Review: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
Publisher: Tor Teen
First published: August 30th, 2011
Source: Won
Pages: 316
Goodreads Summary:
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. 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: 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.

But she, for whatever reason, spares Cas's life.

My Rating: 4.5 / 5

First thoughts:
It didn't take long for me to fall in love with Anna Dressed in Blood. This novel has amazing characters, a unique storyline and an ending that leaves me wanting more. Kendare Blake has conjured up a perfect Halloween story that can be read all throughout the year. You should pick up this book, because you won't be disappointed.

More detailed:
Usually I don't read novels that might be too scary or can be classified as horror stories. But all the positive reviews made me want to read Anna Dressed in Blood and I definitely wasn't let down by the hype surrounding it. It is a very lovely and at some points a quite gory story that will stay with me for a long time.

Anna Dressed in Blood is told from Cas' point of view and it was really refreshing to read a novel from a guy's perspetive. A few months ago this probably wouldn't have appealed to me, but now I love to read a book written from a male perspective from time to time. Cas is a wonderful character and I really enjoyed to see the world from his angle.

Anna was a very interesting character as well. It's amazing to realize that as a reader you're feeling sorry for a character who has murdered many people brutally and that you're hoping that they will get a happy ending. Just like her, the secondary characters like Thomas and Carmel were awesome and I hope to see much more of them in the sequel.

The one thing that made me not give this a five star rating is the fact that Cas and Anna's relationship is developing very slowly. While it works like this very well with the basic storyline, I was a little bit disappointed by the lack of romance at some points and hope that this will change in the second novel.

All in all, Anna Dressed in Blood is a novel which is creepy and gory, but won't cause nightmares. It has wonderful characters, a great storyline and is very well written. I'm dying to see how the story will continue and I'm crossing my fingers for Cas and Anna to be happy. If you haven't read this novel yet, you should do so soon.

Following novel of the series:
2. Girl of Nightmares (2012)

Have you read Anna Dressed in Blood? What did you think about it?


  1. I'm so glad you enjoyed it! I love how much I liked Anna, just because of that. It's impressive how you can twist the story so you feel with that kind of character!

    I agree about the romance moving slowly, but I guess I can understand why. I'd have loved some more though! Great review!

  2. Great review! I'm glad to see you enjoyed it. I adored Anna Dressed in Blood. Cas is a great character. I agree with you though that I did want to see a bit more romance between Cas and Anna but I can understand why their romance is moving at a slower pace.

  3. So glad to see another Anna fan! I kinda enjoyed that the romance came on pretty slowly. I think the way it happened was pretty successful, but I usually do like it when the romance doesn't overshadow the more immediate plot elements. I admire that Kendare Blake could make readers, through Cas, have sympathy for a murderous spirit even before we really get to know her whole story. Nice review!

  4. Wonderful review! This was absolutely one of my favorite reads this year. Anna was such a brilliant character. Like you said, it's not often you find yourself empathizing with a murderous ghost!

  5. I've seen reviews of this book popping up all over the book blogosphere so I'm making it a point to get a copy to read soon. Thanks for the review! :)

  6. I have this on my shelf waiting to be read, I might need to shuffle my TBR pile a bit now although I like a bit of romance with my gore!

  7. YAY, I'm glad that you enjoyed it! It's one of my top favourites of the year!

    I found the slowly creeping up romance suited the book and I enjoyed it from a lot of the BAM insta-love books out there, but that's just me and I can see where you could get annoyed with it ;)

    I can't wait for The Girl of Nightmares to come out in 2012!

    Great review!

  8. thanks for the review! :) hav not read it yet

  9. GREAT review!! This book has totally become one of my favorites, and I agree with your statement... I'm SO hoping for MORE romance for Cas and Anna in Book2!! GOSH I love these covers and this series<3

  10. Yay! So glad you gave it a chance. Anna is awesome! I, too, fond the romance a bit lacking and kind of weird. In love with a ghost? It was a bit o_O to me. Awesome review, Carina!

    Xpresso Reads

  11. Oooh I'm glad you enjoyed it. It does sound great. I picked it up this week and am looking forward to reading it too.

  12. I actually don't mind a lack of romance, or even just slow development (I'm thinking of Bloodlines by Richelle Mead... I really liked how believable it is!) so I'm hopeful that I might like that part about it :)

    I'm not a huge fan of gore, but nothing can be as bad as Gossip Girl, Psycho Killer lol! And I like creepy/horror books.. I haven't read enough of them. I was actually wondering if it was more of a Halloween read, so I'm glad you added that it's a good all-year read.

    Thanks for sharing, Carina!

    I had the exact same concerns as you did about the music aspect of it! I'm not a huge music person, so I was afraid that it would be difficult for me to relate to it. Maybe I'll still give it a shot, but we'll see.. I do keep eharing such good things about it (such as your review)...

    Thanks for sharing! You've given me some things to think about now lol

    Brenna from Esther's Ever After

  13. I read it - I loved it - I thought that it was right for the "romance" to be slow because quite honestly I didn't go into this book expecting a romance and I'm very happy that it wasn't one.
    Pabkins @ Mission to Read


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