Saturday, September 8, 2012

Girl of Nightmares (Anna #2) by Kendare Blake: review + GIVEAWAY

Goodreads rating: 4.25
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published August 7th 2012 by Tor Teen 
Series: Anna #2
Source: ARC from ALA

It's been months since the ghost of Anna Korlov opened a door to Hell in her basement and disappeared into it, but ghost-hunter Cas Lowood can't move on. 

His friends remind him that Anna sacrificed herself so that Cas could live—not walk around half dead. He knows they're right, but in Cas's eyes, no living girl he meets can compare to the dead girl he fell in love with.

Now he's seeing Anna everywhere: sometimes when he's asleep and sometimes in waking nightmares. But something is very wrong...these aren't just daydreams. Anna seems tortured, torn apart in new and ever more gruesome ways every time she appears.

Cas doesn't know what happened to Anna when she disappeared into Hell, but he knows she doesn't deserve whatever is happening to her now. Anna saved Cas more than once, and it's time for him to return the favor.

I didn't realize until I started reading Girl of Nightmares that this series is a duology, which made me sad because I loved Anna Dressed in Blood. But it made complete sense one I thought about it. Everyone assumes Anna is gone for good now from the ending of the first book. She sacrificed herself for hell in order to take down Cas' dad's killer ghost. But it didn't turn out like everyone had hoped. And Cas just can't let her go. He starts seeing her everywhere and sensing her. But no one else can see her; they're telling him to leave it alone and forget about her. But he's in pain because he knows she's in pain, and he won't stop until he helps her. There wasn't much of a romance, but you could tell how much Cas cared about Anna, and how much Anna wanted to be with Cas. But you know it can never be a happy ending with a ghost and a human. Cas starts to realize this, but at some point he realizes that he just needs to save her from whatever torture she's enduring and know that she's safe, and then he can try to move on with his life.

I've always enjoyed the subtle mythology mixed with gory ghoulishness of these books. There's more voodoo magic and even someone like Cas, who's going to take over for him if he decides he doesn't want to kill ghosts anymore or kicks the bucket himself. And Cas doesn't really want this life anymore. He just wants to help Anna and he'll do anything to do it. And in comes Jestine. She's the one meant to replace Cas, and we're introduced to her when she attacks Cas and his partner in crime who's name has completely left me. I'm so bad with names. It turns out there's this whole secret society that has been watching Cas and tell him that he's supposed to be sending ALL ghosts back, not just the bad ones. And Cas doesn't exactly agree with that (Exhibit A: Anna). We also learn that the athame isn't just an athame. I mean, we kind of knew that already, but we find out that it's been sort of like a beacon for Anna on the other side. It's also starting to freak everyone out, and we find out later that it can do much more than send the bad ghosts to hell.

Cas doesn't want to admit that he needs people's help, but his friends make him realize that he does. The other character's (even the new ones) were well-developed, and I enjoyed the reprieve of their drama from Cas' depression. Cas is so out of sorts in this one that it was weird seeing such a confident ghost killer getting unsure of himself because of a girl. And a dead girl no less! But ghost books are tricky, and I think Kendare Blake did an amazing job with it. And hearing a book from the guys' perspective was refreshing. I can't wait to see what Blake comes out with next, which I hear is a Greek mythology series. Should be awesome!

I loved the ending of this duology! Want a copy? Here's your chance to win an ARC!

The only catch is that it's signed to me, but as long as you don't care (you can Sharpie it, tear it, sneeze on it, whatever you want!) I don't care.


Fill out the Rafflecoptor.

Must be 13 years or older to enter.


Ends 9/29


  1. I really loved Anna Dressed in Blood. I have not read very many ghost books, but I think this one will remain my favorite for awhile=)

  2. I personally loved Wherever You Go by Heather Davis it was wonderfully written and made me both sad and happy.

  3. Project 17 was so scary to me!

  4. I love R.L. Stine's books on ghosts. :)

  5. Wonderful review! I have been wanting to pick up a copy of this book for a while.

  6. Also a book I like is Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark by Alvin Schwartz =)

  7. I actually don't have a favorite book about ghosts. I really loved "The Changling" movie back from how knows when and "The Hauting." Both got my heart pumping.

  8. Well, I think Anna Dressed in Blood is my favorite one! Can't wait to read this one! :)

  9. When I was a kid I was obsessed with Casper. I watched the movie approximately a million times lol.

    I really enjoyed Anna and can't wait to read book 2! Thanks for the chance to win!

  10. The Lovely Bones... I'm counting that as a ghost story even if it's not technically true lol.

    Thanks for the giveaway

  11. Most of the ghost stories I have read are short stories in anthologies :)
    I really enjoy the Victorian ghost stories, but I'm sure there are oodles of contemporary ghostly tales I haven't gotten to yet lol

    And thank you for the sweet giveaway <3
    Mary DeBorde M.A.D.

  12. My favorite books about ghosts (or at least with ghosts in them) is the Evernight series by Claudia Gray.


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