Expected UK Release Date: July 5th, 2012
Finished Date: June 20th, 2012
Publishers: Orchard Books
Source: For Review
The Review: “I’ve been Obeahed by an Obeahman? Is this like how the Smurfs say they smurfing smurfed all the time?” -Cas
Well this was deliciously creepy. This is the second ghost story I've read, and frankly the creepiest of the two. It very much reminded me of Supernatural. Cas is a fantastic character and you're pretty much sucked into his life from page one. He's a strong character who does his job well. I always enjoy male protagonists, I find them refreshing because there are so few in YA these days. And to have a male protagonist who is witty and smart, cute and strong pretty much sells the book. He's like a young Dean Winchester. (I know).
Kendare has managed to creep out and intrigue the reader from the get go and as a reader that's pretty much what I want. With all it's creep-tasticness the book was a fab read. If you enjoy creepy YA novels then this is pretty much the book you want to pick up. Anna Dressed in Blood is full of all the gruesome descriptions, all the ghosts and the spooky descriptions of the atmosphere surrounding Cas and his friends. Kendare Blake has a way with words. Her writing seems almost poetic with her dark descriptions and gory details. It really does just flow, you're never really left feeling denied with anything and you're always left with a shiver along your spine.
As far as romance goes. There is some, but it isn't the sole focus of the story. And if anything I was sort of relieved. This may sound a little weird considering I enjoy reading vampire/human romances (they're dead too) the idea of a ghost being a love interest never really got me. I just never understood how that relationship would even work? However, having said that, when the romance between Cas and Anna does start to kindle it is executed beautifully. Which brings me to the ending. One hell of an ending that will pretty much have you thinking WTF?! It's going to make you want to read the next book. Sadly for the UK it isn't released until early next year I believe but US residents will have it in August.
Overall I enjoyed Anna Dressed in Blood a lot more than I thought I would. I wasn't scared like I thought I would be just thoroughly creeped out a lot along the way. If you want to read something fast and are looking for some new YA horror than definitely give Anna a go. You may be pleasantly surprised. Or pleasantly scared.
Note: Thank you to Orchard Books for sending me an advanced copy. Please also note although this is for YA there is some coarse language and a fair bit of bloody horror that may not be for the easily scared or offended.