Thursday, June 13, 2013

Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake Review

Title: Girl of Nightmares
Author: Kendare Blake
Published: August 7th, 2012 by Tor Teen
Book rating: 5 stars
Cover rating: 5 stars
Format: Hardcover, 332 pages
Source: Library
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.

There is no way for me to write this review and not spoil events or give clues to what happened in Anna Dressed in Blood, the first book of this series. So if you haven't read the book or don't like spoilers don't read this review until you've read the first book.

It's rare for me to read a 'scary' YA book and actually be scared or even remotely creeped out. When I read Anna Dressed in Blood back in November Kendare Blake managed to use such beautiful descriptive details about Anna and her psycho scary self that I was in fact scared and creeped out. Right after I read ADiB I was dying to get my hands on Girl of Nightmares and for whatever reason I didn't for clearly a long time. So here I am again beating myself in the head for waiting to read book two, just like I did after I read book one. 

Girl of Nightmares starts off about six months after ADiB ended, with Anna still stuck in hell and Cas still not dead. At least not physically. Cas is pretty much a walking zombie throughout the first 100 pages or so because he misses Anna and doesn't know how to help her, he just knows he needs to. I liked the build up to the part where shit hits the fan. I didn't realize how much I missed these characters until I was spending time with them again. Cas, Thomas, and Carmel are seriously the best ghostbusting gang ever. I didn't really enjoy seeing Cas feel so awful without Anna but I think it was necessary for him in the end to make the right choices. Even though he was feeling like shit throughout a good portion of this book he was still his witty, smartass, hilarious self and he reminded me why I fell in love with him in the first place. Thomas was his same nerdy little loving self and I enjoyed every single scene he was in, even the heart breaking ones. He never fails to amaze me with his loyalty to Cas and I feel like anyone would be honored to have him as a best friend. Carmel and I's relationship didn't change much from what it was in the first book. Some parts I absolutely freaking loved her and others I was absolutely frustrated with her even if I understood what she was doing and why. I applaud her for trying to help the boys when she could, for being so brave, and for never being afraid to be real and straight up with any other character she came across though. In the end I can say that I love all three of these characters more than I can explain.

Like I said above, ADiB was scary. Girl of Nightmares was even scarier to me. Any time the characters were forced into a sketchy situation with some whacked out scary ass ghosts I could feel their fear and terror. Kendare's writing had me on the edge of my seat throughout several scenes in GoN. I couldn't put it down, unless I forced myself to sleep, and I was always laying there wondering what was going to happen next. The ending just about killed me. It was so bitter sweet and I can't explain all the feels I have. I'm just in my little world with all of these emotions. Sadness because this series has ended and I'm going to miss my gang, happiness because the ending was so beautiful and perfect. If you haven't started this series for whatever crazy reason I'm now mentally shoving you to read this book, right now. It was absolutely beautiful, heart breaking, and haunting and I will never forget it.

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