Book Review: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
I love a good spook story. I’m not much into horror and gore, even in a book it just makes me nauseous. But I adore the paranormal genre and love ghost stories. That’s why I had to pick up Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake. Well, that and people have been raving about the book ever since it came out in the autumn last year. I can certainly see why! I really enjoyed this book and, for now, it is my favorite book of 2012.
Cas Lowood inherited an unusual vocation from his father: he kills the dead. Cas and his kitchen-witch mother travel the country with their spirit-sniffing cat to seek out those unruly ghosts and ghouls that trouble the living. When Cas travels to Thunder Bay, Ontario in search of a local legend said to kill any person who sets foot in the house she once lived in, he thinks it’s going to be a normal hunt. But when he ends up in the path of Anna Dressed in Blood without his mysterious and dangerous athame to protect him, Cas expects to end up dead himself. But Anna, for some reason, spares him. With his newfound friends, Cas will have to unravel the mystery of Anna Dressed in Blood and confront his past, including the death of his father.
Anna Dressed in Blood turned out to be everything people were gushing about in their reviews. It’s an awesome story and blew me away. On the surface it looks like a simple, really well-written ghost story but underneath that we have layers of events that turn this simple ghost story into something truly fantastic. I enjoyed all the characters, even the token defenseless but surprisingly necessary girl character. (Although, I have trouble taking people with ridiculous names seriously and with a name like Carmel, you might as well tattoo ‘hooker’ across her forehead because that was all I could think about when I read her name.) The characters all drive the story.
Anna Dressed in Blood has ghosts and witches and demons woven into a story about love and redemption. It’s complex and well thought-out. I was very surprised with how well the differing elements worked together in this book. The pacing is good and it never slows down. The book never drags and the reader is never bored. I enjoyed how aware Anna was, so unlike the other ghosts Cas had encountered. None of the characters annoy me and nobody suffers from ‘too stupid to live’ syndrome. It’s hard to write reviews for truly good books because I have nothing to nitpick and I’m trying not to sound like I want to marry this book and have its little book babies. (Which I sort of do.)
Anna Dressed in Blood is the best book I’ve read this year so far. Anybody looking for an exceptional paranormal story will love this book. Whenever I read a paranormal story, I always feel as if I’m reading something that is a little silly. I can’t quite believe in it. But with Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake the elements of the book are so well put together and everything just flows in a way that makes this a true treasure to read. The sequel, Girl of Nightmares, comes out on August 7th, 2012.
Posted on May 14, 2012, in book review, fiction, paranormal fiction and tagged Anna Dressed in Blood, book, book review, books, fiction, ghosts, Kendare Blake, paranormal, paranormal fiction. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.