Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead. So did his father before him, until he was gruesomely murdered by a ghost he sought to kill. Now armed with his father's mysterious and deadly atheme, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. They follow legends and local lore, destroy the murderous dead, and keep pesky things like the future and friends at bay.
Searching for a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas expects the usual: track, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage. She still wears the dress she wore in the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, it is now stained red and dripping with 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. Yet she spares Cas's life.
©2011 Kendare Blake (P)2012 AudioGO
I really wanted to like this book because I have a hard time finding new good books for my high school library. Unfortuately for this book, I listened to it right after listening to Terry Prachett's "I Shall Wear Midnight," which is outstanding. "Anna" is just time-killing brain candy; although that's sufficient for some students. The reader of "Anna" focuses so much on pronunciation that he sounds robotic, and he's not very good at creating different voices. In short: don't expect much.
It was certainly fun and entertaining. Nothing exceptional, and I doubt I'll read the sequel, but I enjoyed the story throughout. I don't feel like my time was wasted, and I don't regret the purchase, though in retrospect I'd opt for another medium than the audiobook. I have to agree with the previous reviewers that the performance left much to be desired.
The writing and horror imagery was fun and creepy, and the plot was overall well-constructed. To be honest, it's the sort of story where the more you think about it, the less sense it makes. But it's forgivable because the book's goal is to be entertaining, funny, and a little bit unsettling, and it succeeds on all three fronts. I laughed out loud several times, cringed at the gross-outs, and found myself eager to discover what happens next.
As for least interesting: I felt the characters were underdeveloped, and sometimes unbelievable in their willingness to sort of go with the flow, despite the over-the-top paranormal events occurring around them.
When he was reading the narrative, he did a fine job. Character voices, however, came across as cartoon-like and annoying. Carmel sounded like a dumb valley girl, and I found myself disliking her solely as a result of Ross's reading. Similarly, he assigned pretty much every member of the supporting male cast this "dumb jock" voice, even in cases where it didn't make much sense. I mentioned above that I felt the characters were underdeveloped and unbelievable, and I feel the performance contributed that that impression. I wonder what I would have thought of them had I read, rather than listed to, Anna Dressed In Blood.
I don't regret it, but I unfortunately can't recommend it.
I'm kinda sad that I already bought book 2 girl of nightmares in audio format. I'm not sure I can stand to listen to this guy for another book. The story is pretty good but this guy can't complete a sentence without pausing. Seriously a fifth grade class could produce better with just an iphone.
my 8 year old son could do better
It depends on whether or not you're able to get past the production and listen to the story.
His voice was distracting from the beginning and the production had a slight tin can quality. His character voices were all pretty bad. He couldn't even do a good second man's voice. Anna's voice was supposed to have a Finnish accent, but it sounded like a little girl with a lisp.
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