REVIEW: The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

book Title: The Body Finder (The Body Finder series, #1)
Author: Kimberly Derting
Format: hardcover, 327 pages
Genre: YA Paranormal
Source: library
Published: March 2010 by HarperCollins

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 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 dead birds her cat left for her. But now that a serial killer is terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, Violet realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.

Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved by her hope 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.

Why I Read this Book: The Body Finder had a very interesting premise. And if that weren’t enough, this quote from Claudia Gray on the book’s cover sealed the deal:

“You’ll be drawn in by the love story – and kept up all night by the suspense.”

Now that’s what I’m talking about! Most of the time, another author’s quote doesn’t really influence my reading a book but in this case, Claudia Gray got me hyped!

What I Liked: Violet possess an unique and interesting paranormal gift: she can find dead bodies (hence the title). She mostly finds dead animals but sadly, she finds dead human bodies as well. Violet is a likeable character. I like her relationship – and how it developed – with Jay. There’s great character development, not just with the main characters but with the secondary characters as well. I really got to know Violet and her friends.

The author has a great writing style; she kept me engaged the entire way and I never once lost interest. The author also did a superb job with the way things ended. She kept the suspense going all the way up to the very end. The prologue was effective in that it gives the reader some background information to Violet’s gift and it also ties in to the main part of the book. Basically, the author did a phenomenal job with her debut novel.

The Body Finder was told from a 3rd person narrative, which felt like I was getting the overall story on all the characters. There was just enough information without any overload. There were also a few brief chapters from the serial killer’s POV mixed in. I love when an author includes small sections from the bad guy’s POV. It keeps the momentum going and keeps the reader in the loop just enough without giving too much away (when done right). These small bits of the story told from the serial killer’s POV were incredibly haunting, dark and gritty. It’s seriously disturbing and eerie to read what is going on in the serial killer’s mind as he hunted his prey.

What I Didn’t Like: The Body Finder was a good read. I can’t think of any problems I had with the book.

Overall Impression: The Body Finder possesses 3 elements I enjoy finding in books: it’s YA, it has a love story and there’s suspense. Put those 3 elements in the same book and color me tickle pink! The Body Finder finishes without any loose ends so I’m curious to see what’s going to happen in Desires of the Dead. Clear your afternoon when you pick up The Body Finder; you won’t want to put this book down once you start.

The Book Vixen’s Rating:

4 Frogs 

About Brianna: Supermom by day, naughty reader by night. Addicted to chocolate, Twitter, her iPad, her Kindle, and 99¢ Kindle deals. You can follow Brianna on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and Instagram.


  1. I've actually just started reading DESIRES OF THE DEAD. I was surprised by how much I ended up liking THE BODY FINDER, and Jay and Violet have become one of my favorite book couples. :) I liked that Jay remained his own person and wasn't a door mat (not that Violet would have wanted that).

    Jennifer (An Abundance of Books)

  2. Oh I'm so glad you loved it. I was hesitant to pick it up but I absolutely loved it in the end! Can't wait to start Desires of the Dead!!!

  3. I liked your review. I will have to try and get this book soon! I love that there are parts told from a serial killers perspective, sounds intriguing. Love it!

  4. This was a great review. I've been wondering if I should read this one. I think I will now!

  5. I read this not too long ago and loved it as well! Desires of the Dead is a GREAT followup as well. Kimberly also recently mentioned that there will be 2 more books to the series!!

  6. Greta review, and the title does make sense to me now. Not a gift I would like to have at all

  7. I plan to read this. Sounds really interesting. I read the series by Charlaine Harris that had a similar concept but I didn't like them.


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