Kimberly Derting's site
Series: The Body Finder #1
Copy obtained: won from Sarah at Feeling Fictional. Thank you!!
Publisher: HarperCollins (US), Headline (UK)
A Girl with a morbid ability
When a murder is committed it leaves a unique echo...on both the victim and the killer. Most people are unaware of the these echoes but Violet Ambrose has always been able to sense them.
A serial killer on the loose
Now that Violet's town is in the thralls of a serial killer the echoes of the local girls he has murdered are haunting her.
And the boy who would never let anything happen to her.
The only shining light is Violet's best friend Jay. She's started falling for him and his fierce protectiveness gives her hope that he may feel the same way...
With the police at a loss, can Violet use her ability to stop the killer or is she in danger of becoming his next victim?
I was so excited to win a copy of this book! It's a book I'd had my eye on for a while. It sounded a little different and very good, with a lot of great reviews floating around for it as well. And I did love it. I barely put it down once I'd started! I just got sucked straight in to Violet's world as we hear a little about her discovering the body of a teenage girl when she was just 8. Out for a walk with her father she was 'called' towards it by the echo bodies leave behind. I already knew I was on to something I'd love by the end of that prologue. A child's innocence matched with creepiness that had me wondering instantly about what was going on. The story then jumps forward to the present day where Violet is in the first few days of her junior year of high school. When Violet starts feeling the tug of an echo and it leads her to another dead teenaged girl, things start taking a turn for the worse.
I fully admit to being a complete sap for the love story in this book. I loved the relationship between Violet and Jay from the moment we first meet him. They've been best friends pretty much their whole lives, but now things are changing. I love the way it builds, that it's not all straight forward and simple. And that despite not always being on the best terms with each other, Jay is there for Violet no matter what. His easy going, protective nature is sweet and awesome. Both his character and Violets are really well developed, neither of them are perfect, in fact Violet in particular makes some pretty dumb decisions. But it fits with her character, the story and she learns from them. The way the relationship develops between Jay and Violet though is pretty perfect. I think this is one of my favourite romantic plots I've read. It's beautiful, passionate, not all easy, and they fit together so well!
Aside from the romance, the serial killer/echoes side of the book is just as captivating. The suspense and tension just build and build. It's a very carefully woven story that balances perfectly between the romance and the danger. There are some little sections from the POV of the killer which got really very creepy! They added nicely to the tension because honestly, I had no idea who the killer was until the very end and the reveal. I couldn't figure it out. I also really like that while Violet is involved with the case a great deal, it's not one of those books where the teen figures it all out themselves with no cop, or even parental, involvement. There is a strong adult presence in The Body Finder which I'm glad of. Something that lets a lot of YA's down, is no adult involvement when there really should be. Family is important and it's shown here. I love the support Violet has, particularly from her parents.
The Body Finder is a beautifully written book and like I said at the start, one I barely put down! It's beautiful, intense, creepy and I loved every moment of it. It's very well paced as well, not rushing towards a finish line or moving slowly, but giving the chance to savor each moment. I honestly wish it could have been longer cause I wanted so much more of these characters! I can't wait for book 2, Desires of the Dead! Its out Feb 15th in the US, March 17th in the UK (I have a feeling I will not be waiting the extra month for this one if I can help it at all...that would go against my 'buy less books' plan for the year but oh well!). Awesome book which I highly recommend!!