Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Body Finder

Kimberly Derting

I read this one pretty fast while I was on vacation.  A good sign, as it kept me turning the pages pretty much all the way through until the end.  The Body Finder is a paranormal romance with some scary moments mixed in, featuring Violet, who has the ability to detect dead bodies.  She doesn't speak to ghosts, like is typically done in this sort of story.  Instead, she can sense echoes of the deceased, whether it's a strange taste in her mouth, a sound, or something visual.  Either way, her senses are drawn to where the bodies are found, and often grow quieter when she gives them a proper burial.  And the bodies she can sense are only those who have been murdered.  If someone dies naturally, she won't be able to find a trace of them - it's like the murdered souls are not at rest, and so give off these echoes.  Anyways, the same echoes that Violet finds on the corpses are also attached to the murderer of the body, which makes it kind of handy to identify a killer.  Which is what Violet pretty much decides to use her abilities to do in her sleepy little town, where several area girls have turned up dead.  While all of this spooky stuff is going on, Violet also tries to make sense of her personal life, especially when it comes to her best friend since elementary school, Jay, who has grown into the sort of boy that every girl has a crush on, including Violet herself.  As she grapples with her feelings, danger surrounds her in this riveting tale, Derting balancing the supernatural and romantic aspects of the story like a champion.  The Body Finder may not be reinventing the wheel here, but it's a very solid, really well-done thriller.  Very engrossing with really fun characters.  The dialogue throughout is really great too, as Violet has quite a few sarcastic friends who play off of each other nicely.  If you like your stories a little on the scary side, this is a good book for you.

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