Release Date: March 16, 2010
Series: The Body Finder
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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 that 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 the dead birds her cat had tired of playing with. But now that a serial killer has begun terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, she realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.
Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet on her quest to find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved to find herself hoping 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.
It starts with a glimpse into Violet's childhood, showing that she's never been an ordinary girl. Through what she describes as echoes, Violet can sense dead animals and even bodies. She can also differentiate between something that has died naturally or been killed. Luckily for Violet, she has only come across a body once... until now.
I love this book and don't know why I didn't read it sooner. It has some of my favourite genres (YA, paranormal, mystery/thriller, romance) all in one great read. I love the friendship between Violent and Jay as much as I envy it and how it started when they were kids with the possibility now to develop into something more. Jay is such a great guy and very protective of Violet. He is the only one who knows and keeps her gift a secret besides her family. Violet is very sweet and it was easy to feel a connection to her from the beginning. I can't imagine how hard it must be for them to make the transition from best friends to a romantic relationship. Kimberly Derting had fun making me wonder if it would ever become more by teasing me with their hand holding and affection towards each other.
I've been on a mystery/thriller kick lately, but always thought YA books in the same genre might have too many restriction and wouldn't be as thrilling because it's aimed at a younger market. Maybe I was wrong or (and I'm leaning this way) Kimberly Derting writes fantastic plots that anyone can enjoy.
It's a fast-paced thrilling page turner that I can't wait to continue in Desires of the Dead, where I think things are only going to get more complicated.