Monday, August 6, 2012

Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake

Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake
Release Date – August 7 , 2012
Publisher Website –  Tor Teen/Raincoast Books
Publisher Social Media -  Twitter
Pages -  336 pages
My Rating- 4.5/5
**received from publisher for an honest review**


Here is the Goodreads synopsis
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.
Letting go of a loved one that has died can be hard. It can feel like they haunt us, and our grief can make us do irrational, impulsive things sometimes.

Cas is haunted by what happened to Anna, and is literally being haunted by her. She is appearing to him in various visions filled with torture. Cas quickly realizes that he can’t leave the ghost girl he loves to experience this hell for an eternity and sets off to rescue her. Those who loved his snark and voice will be happy to hear that they are both present in abundance in this novel. He is fiercely determined, no matter what the risk, to save Anna. At the end of it all, he’s just a guy who lost the girl he loves and is struggling with letting her go. That pain and heartbreak is something everyone can understand.

The tone of this novel is just as creepy and horrific as the first, but in a different way. The stakes for Cas and the gang feel higher, and much of that has to do with Cas himself. He is distracted, and it all comes back to Anna. The distraction makes for much more peril filled ghost hunting. I will admit that the chapters dealing with the suicide forest are some of the creepiest I have read. Kendare knows how to provide the laughs and the chills in equal measure.

Carmel's strength becomes evident in this novel. It’s easy to see why she became part of Cas and Thomas’ gang and while she may not have powers like they do, she is capable in her own right. I enjoyed her much more in this novel.

Kendare takes the characters from the first novel and had the events that happened to them actually impact them in the second. They behaved in realistic ways and changed from those experiences. It is challenging to make this feel authentic. Balancing this needed change, while still keeping the characters true to what they were presented as in the first novel is something Kendare does masterfully.

I have often read second novels where the plot is a re-packaged version of the first, but this is something different. The author not only makes it feel like one seamless story, a true continuation, but she changes everything - the location, what they are dealing with, and surprisingly, limited appearances by Anna.

There were a lot of questions that needed to be answered, especially about the athame and it's creation. Kendare Blake handles this wonderfully, and manages to show us the answers as part of the story, rather than simply tell us.

The ending of Girl of Nightmares is quite bitter sweet, but it could not have ended any other way. It was touching, heartbreaking, and both Cas and Anna can finally be at peace. Leaving their story at this point feels right, even if it did bring some tears.


  1. i seriously need to buy this this really is interesting....great review.

    Le' Grande Codex

  2. Just judging on cover lone, I need to buy this book! Also, what you've said about the ending is a real drawcard for me - just the kind of book I like.

  3. Hadn't heard of these before, but they sound awesome! Thanks for the review! (Love the cover, too!) :D

  4. Aw gosh, I know this ending will make me teary too. I mean... ghost girl... human boy... the words 'future' and 'together' don't always compliment this scenario well. I am so eager to see how Kendare concludes their story, but I don't want it all to end just yet! :(

    AMAZING review, this sounds just as good as the first book, bringing everything we loved and MORE to the table. I'm happy to hear the creepy elements are still present (you have me so intrigued by these suicide forest chapters) and I can't wait to see how Cas and the gange grow. So, SO excited!

  5. Some tears? I sobbed at the end T_T


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