The Body Finder by: Kimberly Derting
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.
OH MY GOSH! What an amazing book! I have only praise for this book!
Violet has a secret power, or curse, depending on who you ask. Dead and murdered things, being animals or humans, call out to Violet, and she can find them if she follows the ‘echo’. When she senses a murdered girl in a lake, the chase begins as more bodies begin piling up. Violet knows she can use her gift to help catch the killer. In addition to finding a murderer, she has to deal with her growing feelings for her long-time best friend, Jay. Every time he is around, she feels butterflies in her chest and longs to be near him. Violet has to balance falling in love and dealing with the deadly killer.
I really loved Violet. She is smart but carries a lot of weight with her because of her gift. She has to deal with her new and weird emerging feelings concerning her best friend, Jay. She was stubborn and hilarious when she is dealing with Jay. She is blind and cannot see how much he loves her. I was like pulling my hair out the whole time, screaming, “BUT HE REALLY LOVES YOU! DON’T THINK HE DOESN’T! BE STRONG AND TELL HIM HOW YOU FEEL!” I love her cluelessness.
I thought Jay was perfect. After their sophomore year summer, Jay has grown into a man. He is no longer the lanky boy and he’s now… hot. Girls flock at him at school, but he always relies on Violet’s friendship. He is sweet, attentive, and again, clearly loves her. He would to anything to protect her.
I liked the secondary characters as well. Her parents were really sweet, but I absolutely loved her uncle, the police chief. I liked her friend Chelsea because she was funny and outspoken. The reader also gets a glimpse into the mind of the serial killer, which was insightful but also awfully creepy.
The plot was so interesting. I love books that have mysteries in them, and this mystery was written really well. I could barely put the book down because I was so engaged. I read it in two sittings (which would have been only one if I didn’t have to work the next day…) Violet and Jay’s romance is one of my favorites ever. It was so unique because the best friend is the love interest, whereas the new, mysterious guy usually is. It worked really well.
I cannot wait to read the 2nd book, Desires of the Dead! I know it’ll be equally as amazing!
Favorite Swoon-worthy Quote: “I was just waiting for you to want me as much as I wanted you.” His words were quiet but carried one hell of an impact. “I knew we were going to be together; it was just a matter of time. I kept hoping that you would figure it out. But for a smart girl, you’re a little dense, Vi. I kept bringing up Lissie Adams, and showing you the notes she was leaving me, hoping that you’d get pissed enough to finally admit how you felt about me.”