Author: Kendare Blake
Summary (straight from the flap):
Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-kills-people story. . .
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.
What I Loved as a Reader: The COVER. Did you see that cover?? And the text inside the book is a deep, dark red. It's perfect! And the TITLE! Did you read that title?? It's perfect! And the WRITING! Okay so there's just nothing I didn't like about this book.
But seriously- I haven't read much horror in years, and never YA horror. Back in high school I loved Dean Koontz and Stephen King, but that's been (just a FEW) years ago. I never even think to look for horror anymore. I randomly saw the title of Anna Dressed in Blood and thought, "That sounds cool..." and then when I realized it was the name of a ghost, I was sold. And THEN I saw the cover, and well, you know how that goes.
What I Loved as a Writer: Just like other horror books I've read- this book has some disgusting scenes. People are literally ripped in half. There's a particularly gross scene that takes place in the basement of Anna's house. There are corpses and blood and intestines and oozing and rotting and...ick. But none of the horror I've ever read is like this book. It's like, a literary horror story. Which I just never really knew existed until now.
Favorite Line: I kinda wish I'd never added the "Favorite Line" section. I'm learning that it's entirely too difficult to choose just one.
But hey! Who says I have to choose just one? It's MY blog, and I do what I WANT!
Kendare Blake has a gorgeous way with words. I want to be her when I grow up. Here are a few of my favorite examples:
- The light is starting to get golden, coming at us sideways, and getting ready to turn sunset colored.
- The scenery changes every few blocks, from trees ripe with golden and reddish foliage to streetlights and bright plastic signs, and finally to railroad tracks and stark, unlabeled cement buildings.
- I'm staring up at Anna's house again. The logical part of my brain tells me that it's just a house. That it's what's inside that makes it horrifying, that makes it dangerous, that it can't possibly be tilting toward me like it's hunting me through the overgrowth of weeds.