Release Date: August 30th 2011
Series: Anna Dressed in Blood #1
Genres: Horror & Ghost Stories, Paranormal, Young Adult
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. Anna Dressed in Blood is a 2011 Kirkus Best Teen Books of the Year title. One of NPR's Top 5 Young Adult Novels of 2011.At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.
I’ve never really written a review on a horror novel, this is also the first Young Adult horror novel I have read. I personally believe in the paranormal, although I am not crazy about it. I recognize that there could be something else out there. Our main character, Cas, certainly does as well.
Cassio Lowood is our hero of the novel, although he is definitely not a stereotypical hero. He kills the dead ever since his dad died killing the dead. He takes it upon himself to continue this “family legacy” that was left behind for him. His quest leads him to follow a tip for a ghost dubbed “Anna Dressed In Blood.” Anna is a local legend that sends the weak at heart home crying to their mothers, and a story teens tell around campfires at parties. Cas finds out Anna is no mere legend, and goes after her. His first encounter with this girl dressed in blood is frightening, and horrific. Lives are taken. But Cas is spared.
ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD is a wild ride you’ll want to read in daylight. I loved the characters, I loved the way it was written, and I can’t wait to read the sequel! Another thing I loved was the humor in the novel, I like a nice laugh to kind of bring me out of dark seriousness of the book. This is definitely one checking out, except if you’re really squeamish! I still am replaying an unfortunate scene with a body being torn in half.
I usually don’t like reading books with a male POV (don’t kill me!) but I really got into Cas as the narrator, I think he is a well written character with depth.
The ending! Oh, that ending! It will make you want the next book at your fingertips!