Author: Kimberly Derting
Genre: Young Adult
Release Date: 03/16/10
Violet Ambrose is grappling with two major issues: Jay Heaton and her morbid secret ability. While the sixteen-year-old is confused by her new feelings for her best friend since childhood, she is more disturbed by her "power" to sense dead bodies—or at least those that have been murdered. Since she was a little girl, she has felt the echoes the dead leave behind in the world . . . and the imprints that attach to their killers.
Violet has never considered her strange talent to be a gift; it mostly just led her to find dead birds her cat left for her. But now that a serial killer is terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, Violet realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.
Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved by her hope that Jay's intentions are much more than friendly. But even as she's falling intensely in love, Violet is getting closer and closer to discovering a killer . . . and becoming his prey herself.
Plot: 5 Stars
Although there are many novels out there involving a heroine with some sort of psychic ability, Violets ability is a very unique one I haven't encountered before. I really liked that she not only sensed the bodies, but could also sense the echoes on the person who was at fault. My favorite aspect of her ability was that each echo was unique to the individual, so as to make it possible to notice multiple echoes. I also really enjoyed that Violet's parents were aware of her ability, when so many other Young Adult heroines keep that aspect from their parents. I also liked how the paranormal aspect of the story didn't overshadow Violet's social and school life. There was a great balance to this novel that I really enjoyed.
Pace: 5 Stars
I couldn't put this novel down. It was filled with one twist after another. Just when I thought I had figured it out, I was thrown for a loop and sent in a completely different direction. The story also had a very real timeline. Summer ended, school started, weeks went by. Too often, three hundred pages encompasses two or three days of power packed craziness. It was nice to have the plot spread over the course of weeks instead of days because it felt real. Also, the chapters dispersed throughout the novel from the villian's point of view were well placed and really added to the suspense.
Characters: 5 Stars
Violet was a very likeable young adult character who doesn't let her ability get in the way. The relationship between Violet and Jay was a nice blend of friendship and growing feelings that I think many people will relate to. I also liked how Violet's parents were involved without being too overprotective. Lately it seems like in many Young Adult novels the parents are either absent or too removed from the story, but this wasn't the case for Violet's parents and it was a refreshing change.
Cover: 4.5 Stars
There seems to be a trend in Young Adult paranormals where the cover has a striking flower on it instead of a cover model. The large blue flower on the cover of The Body Finder was very striking against the black background. While the photo itself was striking and makes for a beautiful cover, it doesn't really have anything to do with the story. Had the title not been "The Body Finder" or something just as descriptive to the plot, I wouldn't have had a clue what the novel was about.
Overall: 5 Stars
Disclosure: I bought this book for my own enjoyment.