Saturday, August 25, 2012

Audio Book Review: Girl of Nightmares

Media Type: Audio Book
Title: Girl of Nightmares
   *Series: Anna #2
Author: Kendare Blake
Narrator: August Ross
Publisher: Audio GO
Format: MP3 CD
Duration: 10 hours and 3 minutes
Source: Audio Go
Intended Reading Group: Young Adult
Content Screening: Violence; Swearing
HDB Rating: 3 Keys to My Heart

Add it on: Goodreads / Shelfari / Amazon / B&N
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.

Narrator Review:
Let's start with the things I liked about August Ross. First off I never really thought about what Anna would sound like, so I was pleasantly surprised to find that Ross' voice suits her very well! Anna's background comes through fabulously. I also really liked the variations in voices between Cas, Carmel and Thomas. It makes it easy to figure out who is speaking.

Unfortunately, Ross also reads extremely slowly. It helps a lot with being able to follow along, but a book that I could have read in 4 to 5 hours became over 10 hours long. There is also very little inflection in the reading, so the story drags at points. Overall it was a fairly good rendition of the story, but I would have liked a little more excitement.

Audio Book Rating: 3/5 - It was okay. You might want to actually read this one.


Book Review:
This is going to be a really tough review to write, since I all but flipped out praising Kendare Blake's first book, Anna Dressed in Blood. I was so very excited to see what happened to Anna and Cas after the cliffhanger that Blake left for us in the last book. As soon as I was able to get my hands on a copy of Girl of Nightmares I did! I was eager for more of the stuff of nightmares that drew me in the first time around.

What I found though was a much different book. Anna and Cas are both back. However this time they're so different, and I'll admit that it threw me off a bit. If you'll remember from my review of the first book, I loved Cas' cocky demeanor and lone wolf attitude. What can I say? I'm a sucker for boys like that. The Cas that comes through in this book is a much more lonely and sad boy. Broken, sad, a little like a lonely puppy. Where was my Cas? In the same respect, Anna was there, but also not. I can't explain without spoiling, but I missed her so much.

After a few chapters I finally got used to Cas' new attitude, and was okay with it. Blake does a great job of showing his deep need to find Anna. So I kept reading on, hoping for some scary scenes to keep me up and night and sadly nothing happened. Seriously. There are multiple chapters where nothing exciting happens at all. Now, yes, I understand why. Kendare Blake spends a lot of this book explaining the history behind Cas' athame. She also introduces a new threat in the form of a sinister society with tons of secrets. However without the visceral imagery, the haunting happenings, and the Anna/Cas interaction, I found myself bored. It made for a slow read.

It's actually not surprising to me that I didn't love Girl of Nightmares as much as Blake's first book. I loved Cas as a ghost busting bad-ass. I adored Anna as a vicious yet gorgeous apparition. Everything that I loved about Anna Dressed in Blood was missing here. I applaud the character development, and can't deny that I enjoyed learning about the athame's past. Still, this wasn't my favorite sequel. This is worth a read for closure alone though, especially if you were waiting as eagerly as I was.

Other books in the series:

FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.


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