Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

Violet can sense dead bodies. Not any dead body, only those that have been murdered. They give off echoes, colors, sounds, and other sensations. Those that are responsible give off corresponding echoes.

She can also sense dead animals. She can barely stand to be around her cat (which, to me, begs the question, why does she keep it?!) I must say I had something of a problem with this, only because I don’t think that animals hunting and killing other animals ever constitutes murder (in my notes I went on at length, be thankful I spared you). So anyway, I decided to go with Violet being able to sense violent endings. Ahhh, yes. Much better.

Enter a serial killer, who is killing young ladies in her town. Girls she’s known and grown up with. Violet feels compelled to seek him out using her special skill set. When is this ever a good idea? Oh, that’s right – never! Violet soon finds herself in increasing danger.

There was some really great suspense in this book. Interspersed with Violet’s narrative are chapters written from the killer’s point of view and they are flat out creepy. We see how he picks his victims, how he traps them, but thankfully not what happens after – which would have been too much. Leaving that to the imagination makes it even creepier in my mind. There were some great plot twists in here too that were unexpected.

All in all though, this book was not for me. Violet has a special power, but still needs to be rescued by the various males in her life. Part of this I understand, yes, she has a special power, but she hasn’t really explored it and this whole serial killer situation thing is totally new. So it isn’t like she’s a super hero or anything. But still, Jay was a little too protective for my taste. I found him stifling. I wanted to tell him to back off. And there was that little matter of a sexual assault that happened on a date Violet has with a school friend. It wasn’t spoken of in those terms and that is exactly the problem I had with it. Or I could be overreacting. It just seemed like it was a serious thing.


Do killers really ever burst into a detailed explanations, doing everything but tapping their fingers together like Mr. Burns and letting off evil laughter (muahahahahaha) before they are going to kill you? Do they? I mean, I guess it’s possible. It just doesn’t seem realistic. It seems like a way for an author to info-dump on the reader. I would have preferred Violet to learn of the ins-and-outs of the methods from her uncle after the fact. Oh and the fact that he dressed up in camo complete with camo face paint to chase her through the woods was just too much for me. I kept thinking of the episode of Arrested development when Tobias followed Lindsay on her date with the homeless dude dressed up in blue-man makeup all the while blending into walls and vending machines. I do not blame this on the author in any way – this is the type of thing my brain just does. It makes it hard for me to take things seriously. I had a similar problem when reading The Road when they were eating babies. So, yes, very much a personal problem.

***end of spoilers***

So my conclusion? The romance is steamy and the suspense will keep you turning the pages. I think teen girls will like it.

Book Source: Library Copy

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