Thursday, September 6, 2012

Review: Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake

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.

So, you know that feeling when you read the sequel of a book you read awhile ago, but really loved it and now have a lot of apprehension as to whether or not it will live up to expectations? But then you start reading it and you love it? That feels like seeing an old friend again, remembering the good times with a slight wonder if they’ve changed at all, then you realize they haven’t changed. And then you notice all the things you’ve forgotten with time and never knew you missed until now but it fills you with an amazing, indescribable feeling to know that you now have it back? Yes. That. This book.

I started reading Girl of Nightmares very late one night (maximum stupid to read this before bed, but whatever) and around 4am I had to FORCE myself to put the book down and sleep after I’d devoured the first 100 pages. Now, I feel like this should be obvious, but if you haven’t read Anna Dressed in Blood (my review), I’m going to tell you there might be spoilers by proxy. This should be fairly obvious, but I will state it anyway. Spoilers by proxy. You are warned.

When we left off in Anna (last spoiler warning!) Anna dragged Big Bad into the underworld, thus saving Cas, Thomas and Carmel. Awesome. And we pick up a few months later with a rather dejected Cas who begins being haunted by a VERY creepy and lifeless Anna. One who bleeds black at random times and more than a few times left me in a state of close to bed-wettingness. After a creeptastic encounter with Thomas’ aunt, we learn that Anna is in Hell and Cas is going to save her. Sadly, I don’t want to/ can’t say too much after that cause it gets a wee spoilery, BUT I will tell you that everything that happens after that is AMAZING. After I forced myself to sleep, I woke up and continued reading and snapped at any and all that interrupted it.

Cas is back in all of his snarky glory. So much so that I was literally LOL-ing and getting looks. And if it isn’t Cas, it’s Thomas or Carmel. Really, their little trio has that perfect Harry Potter & Co. vibe. Their sweet friendship and fantastic humor certainly gives a lighter vibe, which is nice, considering all the morbidity floating (pun intended) around. And, seriously, other than just Anna, this book brings the creepy. I was severely creeped out at several times and you all know I love my creepy things, right? Brava, Ms. Blake.

After I finished, I was a little torn, cause that ending was wrapped up rather nicely for a trilogy. Too nice. So I go to Twitter (my trusted book information hotline), only to be told that it is in fact NOT a trilogy. My reaction? Okay, I’m going to drown myself in cheese now. NOT because it didn’t well, like I said, it was perfect. But, I’m now going through SERIOUS series withdrawal. I don’t WANT it to be over! I want more snarky Cas and ridiculously loyal Thomas and even little firecracker Carmel and EVEN kinda shady, but ultimately cool Jestine (yes, she’s a new character - no, I don’t think this really spoils much). I really don’t think I’ve ever like a band of characters this much in a series and all I got with them was two books?! That’s just unfair. They have been ripped from me too soon.

-Reviewed by Jennifer


  1. Jessica@a GREAT readSeptember 6, 2012 at 3:39 PM

    Awesome review! Can't wait to read this one, loved Anna as well! Sadly I already had heard that this was a 2 book series. A "duology" as Kendare said at the book signing I attended.

    But still, I am even more excited to read this book now! So wish I didn't need sleep! Then I could make serious dents in my TBR mountain(s)!

    Once again, great review!

  2. Cant wait to start this series. Thanks for the heads up about no trilogy. I though it was too. Great review...

  3. I love the fact that this series was just a two parter. I'll definitely miss Thomas and Cas and Anna, though. And that part in the forest? Dude, I was sandwiched between a wall and my husband with my warm dog between my legs and I still got the serious creepy-crawlies and I kept peeking at the sliver of open door to see if anything was coming for me :P