Source: Bought (the Kindle edition is only $2.99!! I really don't think I paid that price when I bought it!)
Publication Date: Aug 2011, Girl of Nightmares comes out Aug 07, 2012!!!!
Short Synopsis (Goodreads): Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-kills-people story...
Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.
So did his father before him, until his gruesome murder by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father’s mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. Together they follow legends and local lore, trying to keep up with the murderous dead—keeping pesky things like the future and friends at bay.
When they arrive in a new town in search of a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas doesn’t expect anything outside of the ordinary: move, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he’s never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, but now stained red and dripping blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.
And she, for whatever reason, spares his life.
My Review: WOW, just wow. I wasn't expecting to like this book as much as I did. Last year the blog0sphere simply erupted with praise over this book, but I held off...horror isn't my thing. Yes, it was a YA, but a ghost that gruesomely murders people? As my blog name implies (Books Before Bed) I usually read right before I go to sleep and this seemed like the type of book to give me nightmares.
Thankfully it didn't, although I did get the willies once or twice (oh my goodness! That one part where the guy is wrapping something black around his fingers and they wonder what it is but then figure out it's the cats tail !?!? That was by far the creepiest part for me, even more so than Anna killing people!) but that makes an experience more enjoyable and memorable, right?
Cas was a good character to follow. He cares about his mom, wants to do a good job and is pretty competent at his chosen profession. Ms. Blake did a fantastic job of creating atmosphere and yet not going over board with the spooky stuff. She has some really great characters and I ended up falling for Anna and sympathizing with her just like everyone else.
And boy, are there some twists and turns to this book. I really enjoyed unraveling everything and it was all set at a really good pace. Now that we have waited a WHOLE YEAR for the next installment, I'm pretty pumped to see what else Ms. Blake has up her sleeves. Definitely worth the read!