Author Info: Website / Twitter / Facebook
Publisher: Orchard Books (UK) / Tor Teen (US)
Release Date: July 5th, 2012 (UK) / August 30, 2011 (US)
ARC: 367 pages
Genre: Young Adult - Paranormal
Read it in: 10 days
Challenge: TBR Pile, Book Blogger Recommendation
Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-kills-people story...I've been wanting to read this for a long time, so once I saw it on the review list from Orchard Books I knew I had to get it! I'm so glad I had the opportunity to review this, even though it took me forever to read it once I started it. That had nothing to do with the writing or anything either, more the fact that I was a chicken and wouldn't read it at night if my hubby was working and I was also reading an eBook at the same time. So it took me ten days!
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.
I don't know where to begin with this book. It was downright creepy. I looove creepy things, but this nearly gave me nightmares! Which, of course, I did love! This is such a unique idea and I fell in love with it. Sometimes I have trouble getting into reading through books that have male point-of-views, but I didn't have an issue with this book at all. I got dragged in from the start.
Cas, the main character, is sarcastic and such a great guy. Yes, his occupation/hobby isn't normal for someone his age, but that makes him so interesting. He doesn't have a lot of friends, but he knows how to make his way to the top if he has to. Which really helps when he's looking for information on the "ghost stories" around his new town.
Cas makes two new friends when he comes to Thunder Bay: the beautiful popular girl, Carmel, and the scrawny outcast Thomas. When Carmel came into the picture, I thought she'd be the stereo-typical annoying popular cheerleader, but after a few events happen in the book she becomes a lot more than that and you actually see real personality there and I really liked the REAL side of her.
I really liked Thomas' character and his grandfather, Morfran. They added a lot to the story and Thomas is very helpful and a great guy. Him and Cas are hilarious together.
Anna was really creepy at first and I didn't like her. I just wanted her gone so we could continue with the story. But she WAS the story, which even though the title IS after her, I thought that by the end of the book she'd be dead and boy was I wrong! By the end of the book she wasn't as creepy, she could have her moments, but she was a great character and I'm glad we got to know her a bit.
Overall, this was a great book and I'm dying to read the sequel. I definitely recommend this to those who love a great story and a great creepy type novel. There is even a little bit of romance in it! I'm definitely adding Kendare Blake to my author watch list because she definitely knows how to write and definitely knows how to creep someone out. Great job Kendare Blake! I love your name too, by the way!
The sequel to this is called Girl of Nightmares. It will be released in the US on August 7th, 2012.