Violet is sixteen-years-old and has a unique gift. She has the ability to sense the residual "echoes" of the murdered and is...drawn to them.
While the dead have a distinct echo of sound or vibration, the murderer carries the exact same imprint. Violet can immediately tell who is the killer, and since she was a young girl, she has been an unwilling tracker of the murdered. When young girls begin to go missing in her small town of Buckley, Washington, Violet is pulled into it when she finds a body in a lake. She knows she has to find the killer. Which doesn't make it easy for a teenage girl who would rather think about her best friend, Jay, instead.
This Young Adult book is structured with each chapter from Violet's perspective. Every now and again, however, the thoughts of the unknown killer are shared - and it is most assuredly creepy. Surprisingly, it was the same unsettling feeling I had while reading Robert Bloch's Psycho (which was turned into Hitchcock's infamous film). In the book, Norman's thoughts are shared, and his rationalizations for his "mother" and how she is killing was unnerving. The Body Finder has the same pull to the dark side as you read the killer's thoughts.
Although I thought there was much too much love tension between Violet and her best friend, Jay, I kept reminding myself that I wasn't the right audience for this book. A much younger market with their emotions in a turmoil wouldn't mind all the teenage love tension and drama; I, however, wished that it was shored up a bit and a lot of it cut from the final version. But, the bottom line is I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I don't normally read a lot of Young Adult, paranormal-esque type books (but I think I might read more now), this decidedly kept my interest and I loved the creativity of Violet's ability and the thrill of the hunt as she was the one who was tracking the killer, instead of the killer finding his next victim. Flipping from one page to the next, I cheered her individuality and also felt her fear of her skill was genuine. Kimberly Derting has creatively rooted her place in the YA world with this engaging, dark, and riveting story.
Note to parents
As I think most would when recommending a Young Adult book, I suggest you read it first and make a determination if it's appropriate for your teenager to read. There are fairly intense moments of passion while Violet and Jay are together, swear words are casual, and not to mention, there is a serial killer on the loose who is seeking out young girls. It's a lot in a YA book, and while I enjoyed it, I'm also in my *ahem* late thirties, so I didn't mind reading it at all.
Sweet Nook Color Deal
Thanks to see scoot read, I downloaded this book for $1.99 on my Nook Color. In checking this morning, the same rate still applies, so go pick it up for a quick and fast read. I read this in one day while traveling on business to Charlotte, NC and I'm glad I did. Turns out it's the first in a series, so I'm going to have to get Desires of the Dead next. I can't not finish a series.
Coffee and a Book Chick