For What It's Worth

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Review: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

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. (YA)



Just wow.

I don't think I have the words to describe Anna Dressed in Blood adequately. Or maybe I have too many, or maybe just not the right words.

The words that do come to mind are: gruesome,…..gripping…..beautiful…. terrifying…..snarky….. brilliant….

From the first page I was pulled in to this incredible world of ghosts, witches and voodoo mixed with curses, revenge, romance and destiny. I actually found myself holding my breath on several occasions only to be relieved of my tension by a well placed moment of humor.

The writing is just incredible. Intense and vivid, I could SEE everything. I felt like I was trapped in a movie…..I was right behind Cas, seeing Anna through his eyes. Cas is mesmerized by her terrifying beauty and power even though he's there to kill her.

" She's standing above me, the goddess of death….." (pg 77)

"Instead I find a ghost with the strength of a storm…………Persephone back from Hades, or Hecate half decayed." (pg 84)

I was so entranced by the writing that I was often shocked by events even though it seemed fairly obvious after the fact. Anything can happen in Anna Dressed in Blood.

I could go on and on but I won't. Go read this book. Like yesterday. I have no less than 20 post-it notes marking my favorite passages and my phone is filled with comments and notes about everything I loved as I was reading.

A few weeks ago the Top Ten Tuesdays meme question was: Top Ten Books I Wish I Could Read Again For The First Time. I would want to read Anna Dressed in Blood for the first time over & over again.

Rating: 4 out of 4 Definitely made it to my top books of the year list. I'll be re-reading Anna Dressed in Blood and it has a spot on the "keeper" shelf.

Find the author: website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads
Buy the book! Anna Dressed In Blood
Tor Teen August 30, 2011
Source: Lena from Addicted 2 Novels THANK YOU!!! xoxoxoxo


  1. Awesome review, Karen! You're right, you liked it a little bit more than me but I totally get where you're coming from.

  2. Yay! glad you liked it! Have you seen the cover for Girl of Nightmares?! It's fantastic! Can't wait!

  3. I think it's kind of funny how you seem to write less on books you like. I understand you want to avoid gushing too much, but on paper it sounds weird. But it works. Your repetition of it being good and should be bought makes me want it- really, really badly! *Goes away to wallow and also contemplate oddness of situation*

  4. Great praise! I look forward to reading this one.

  5. Yup, Anna is pretty awesome!! I'm glad you enjoyed it too I can't wait for the sequel with it's amazing cover!

    Xpresso Reads

  6. Just WOW O_O Really? Yes I have heard good things but to be honest nothing has really compelled me to think more about the book, so a wow might help

  7. I look forward to reading this one

  8. yeah I read the review, that's all I have to say. Tortuous!!!

  9. I can't tell you how happy I am that you liked this. (Clapping hands in excitement.) I CANNOT wait to read it!

  10. My TBR pile is already so huge, but now I've got to move this one up.

  11. HUZZAH! You loved Anna Dressed in Blood!! YAY!! i mean how could you not!?!? This is one of my favoritest books EVER!! Cas is basically amazing and kick-ass and i want to date him! :P

    I totally agree with you about the writing too! The imagery is so effing fantastic and gruesome and captivating! "Goddess of death" i LOVE LOVE LOVED that comparison! I am SO happy there's going to be a squeal! I NEED more ANNA & CAS!! Great review wifey!! <3

  12. *eyes wide* I know that we established that this was definitely, absolutely, totally not my kind of book. But I kind of want to read it now. Conflict!

  13. I LOVED this book also! Great review!

  14. Glad to hear you loved it as much as I did - I already forced my sister to buy and read it also! haha
    Pabkins @ Mission to Read

  15. It is on my TBR but haven't been able to get to it yet. Great review.

  16. Wow your enthusiasm definitely makes me want to get this book but I am afraid it'll be too scary for me to handle :(.