by Kimberly Derting
Okay, remember when I held a contest for this way back in March? I chose this book because it was a book that I wanted to read, so I was beyond excited when my library finally got it in (yeah, that's right, I use the library). Anyways, I read this all in one sitting! Wow.. I totally missed a huge chunk of my review... including picture and summary :P whoops! Here it is!
A serial killer on the loose. A girl with a morbid ability. And the boy who would never let anything happen to her.
Violet Ambrose can find the dead. Or at least, those who have been murdered. She can sense the echoes they leave behind... and the imprints they leave on their killers. As if that weren't enough to deal with during junior year, she also has a sudden, inexplicable, and consuming crush on her best friend since childhood, Jay Heaton.
Now a serial killer has begun terrorizing Violet's small town... and she realizes she might be the only person who can stop him."
My Expectations: I thought this was gonna be fantastic! I held a contest for it, didn’t I?
Delivery: Met my expectations in enjoyment level, but maybe some afterthought it might have fallen a tiny bit.
Put-down-ability: Low! Read in one sitting, 2/10
Let’s just say I really, really, really liked this book. It started off with the remarkable premise of Violet being able to sense dead people, which to be honest, drew me into the book right away. Her friendship-or-something-more with Jay sucked me further in and by the time the girl’s body was found I was in over my head.
The writing in this novel is extremely strong, despite being wordy at times. I was okay with the choices of words (my friend is a thesaurus-peruser) but sometimes the vocabulary doesn’t fit perfectly and things sound awkward. Other times it helped the story flow with intricate detail and sensory adjectives. The third person POV was well executed and not distracting.
I think there are two strong points in this novel, the mystery and the romance. The chapters from the serial killer’s POV were extremely intriguing and just fascinating to read, not to mention reminiscent of my favourite TV show Criminal Minds. I loved how the mystery followed Violet and the way it progressed the plot without overpowering it.
However, the romance part I was iffy on. Definitely not because I didn’t like the characters—I did—it’s just the way it was handled lacked…something. One thing I felt made The Body Finder stand out was the fact that Violet was already crushing on Jay, and it didn’t become the whole girl-who’s-clueless-about-her-best-friend-who-loves-her that is overused-- Violet is actually aware of her own attraction. However, as the romance unfolded I thought it lacked the extra oomph that makes romance go the extra mile.
**Minor Spoilers Below**
You’re wondering why, right? For me, it was because of Jay. Now don’t get me wrong, he is always there for her, the best friend possible, so perfect…too perfect. The spark between the two was undeniable, but Jay was just too one-dimensional with a twist. Come on, readers, name a single flaw of Jay’s (excluding jealousy)! There isn’t one, and I thought he was too much of a knight-in-shining-armor; I wanted a more realistic love interest, not someone who is completely flawless.
However, I thought Violet was a strong protagonist- she went out and tried to figure out the mystery instead of saving her own ass. I liked the way she acted around her friends, was independent, and could stand her own ground. Apart from my admiration for Violet, I felt most of the characters in the novel lacked depth, which was disappointing. Oh, and thank you for including regular parents, Ms Derting, it was refreshing because they are there, but don’t dominate the story or suffocate (too much) Violet.
Parting thoughts- I would definitely recommend this to people looking for thriller-romances, this was such a joy to read!
Book in HP terms- Exceeds Expectations
8.7/10- I wanted to give this a 9, but I thought the weak character development held it back. Despite that, the story itself is extremely addicting and will keep you flipping pages to find out what happens next. A healthy dose of romance doesn’t hurt and I found myself rooting for Violet and Jay the whole time. The deaths and the scenes from the serial killer draw you back to the suspense and mystery, and descriptive action/chase scenes keep you glued to the page. 8.7/10 is an A-.
Definitely recommended for those seeking an action-y romance YA novel, this one you can’t miss! And a must-read for lovers of crime-drama TV, especially Criminal Minds :P