Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake


Anna Dressed in Blood was one of my favourite books so far this year, so I was really excited to read the sequel. 

From the blurb:

Cas Lowood used to kill ghosts – until he fell in love with one.

Anna Dressed in Blood sacrificed herself to save Cas’s life – but life without her isn’t worth living. So when Anna begins haunting Cas’s nightmares he decides to track her down. Trouble is, Anna is trapped in the depths of Hell. 

And she is not alone.

Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-gets-sucked-into-Hell story. 


Cas has stayed in Thunderbay, and is finishing the school year in the same place he started it, which is almost unheard of for the teenage ghost hunter. 

Cas’s mom is settling into their new home despite the loss of the family cat (poor Tybalt), and Cas has grown really fond of junior ghostbusters Thomas and Carmel. Carmel has even tried setting Cas up with her friends. 

Life is going surprisingly well for Cas, but he can’t forget Anna Dressed in Blood. Despite the curse she was afflicted with, Anna sacrificed herself for Cas and his friends. Cas somehow knows that Anna is suffering, and when he starts to see visions of her, tortured and in pain, he knows he has to try and save her. 

Cas starts to investigate his athame, the magical ghost killing knife he inherited from his father, and discovers that it has links to a mysterious organisation known as The Order of Biodagh Dubh. Cas hopes to find someone who can help him get to Anna, before it’s too late to save her soul…

I hoped this book would be amazing, but I may have set my expectations too high. Anna Dressed in Blood was sooo good, it’s fair to say it’s a hard act to follow.  This book seemed to have lost the dark sense of humour that ran through the first book, and which set it apart from other YA novels.

I didn’t like the introduction of “the order”; to me, the shady, semi-religious cult took something away from the storyline. I felt that Cas’s mom, or Thomas’s grandfather could have provided Cas with the occult information he needed, to be able to reach Anna. 

The characters travelling to the UK also seemed really out of place.  Some of the British cultural references were off and made me cringe.

Some of the best bits in the first half of the book were really creepy and suspenseful – for example when the characters were investigating creepy abandoned barns, or visiting people who just didn’t seem quite right.. those parts were brilliant! It was really sad that it just seemed to run out of steam halfway through. I also really loved the ending. Overall I gave Girl of Nightmares 3/5 stars on Goodreads.

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Cheerio!

Stephani Xxx

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