Review: Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake
Girl of Nightmares
by Kendare Blake
Series: Anna #2
Published by Tor
on August 7th, 2012
Genres: Horror, YA
Pages: 332
Goodreads

 

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.


Girl of Nightmares picks up a few month’s after Cass, Thomas, Carmel and Anna had their big show down with the Obeahman. Thomas and Carmel and ready to put the ordeal behind them and move on but my sweet Cass can’t let go of Anna. He wants to know that she is where she belongs, that she is ok. It doesn’t take long for Anna to “show” up and show us just how not alright she is.

This is where I would like to stand up and clap obnoxiously loud for Blake because her imagination and gift for detail is amazing. Gore isn’t exactly a genre I seek out but when Blake begins to describe the horrible things happening to Anna I can’t look away. It’s like a train wreck. Your eyes can’t leave whats happening and in the back of your mind you sort of want to look closer.

But Girl of Nightmares just didn’t give me the same rush or feelings of surprise and wow that Anna Dressed in Blood did. The story was still very detailed and imaginative but it felt different. It felt normal and a bit “run of the mill”. The main thing I loved and praised about the first book was how ORIGINAL it was. Nothing about the plot, the writing, or the characters was what you would see in other YA novels. It was a fresh take that surprised, please, shocked, and excited me. But I sort of feel like a lot of that kind of went out the window with this book.

Our fearless leader Cass goes from this “I’m not a superhero”/”I do what I have to do” guy to this love sick “I’m going to Hell for her” blob. I’m all for true love and I felt it was brave and (kind of) sweet that Cass was willing to go through such lengths to make sure that Anna was ok. But I was a bit aggravated by his tactic, and blind trust. Then Carmel does the unbelievable and I actually had to push myself through a chapter. I liked Carmel because even without “powers” she was still a brave force to be reckoned with! She’d beat a ghost head in with a baseball bat all for her friends and then she just turns around and does that?! And her reason? I call bullshit! Thomas was the only one of the group that actually showed growth and stayed true to the character I grew to love in the first book. Even Anna was a new character this time around. I completely understand why and I know that the “dark goddess” is still a bad ass, but I guess I was just a little disappointed but her change. It was bad enough that I barely got to see her in this book and then the few times I do she’s like that! I still love Anna and she still scares the bejesus out of me but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a little disappointed.

I don’t regret adding Girl of Nightmares to my shelves though. In fact all in all the book was still a solid scary read with good character and good (yet slow) plot, that had me looking over my shoulder and turning on all the lights. It just didn’t hold me tight and rattle my insides like the first book did. Maybe I was still riding the high of the first book and expected too much of the second book. Whatever happened I can only say that while the first one blew my socks off Girl of Nightmares was a 3.5/4 star read for me, and I seriously don’t understand how that happened when the story had so much potential.

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3 thoughts on “Review: Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake”

  1. I loved Anna Dressed in Blood but I couldn’t get into this one. I mean, it was going to be the same all over (chicken feet, spells, and stuff).
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  2. The chicken feet stuff was one of my favorite things about Anna! It showed (to me) that even the supporting character can be strong. But I definitely loved the first book more. 🙂
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