The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

bodyfinder

The basics

Title: The Body Finder

Author:

Series: The Body Finder #1

- The Body Finder (March 2010)
- Desires of the Dead (February 2011)
- The Last Echo (April 2012)
- Dead Silence (April 2013)

Add it: Goodreads

Goodreads Summary:

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 that 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 the dead birds her cat had tired of playing with. But now that a serial killer has begun terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, she realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.

Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet on her quest to find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved to find herself hoping 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.

 in short

There are a load of murders and disappearances in Violet’s town. Since she can sense echoes and imprints, she decides to help find the person who has been kidnapping and killing young girls. In addition to that, she’s also struggling with her feelings for her best friend, Jay, who apparently became very hot over the summer.

what went down

  • In the prologue, a young Violet comes across a dead girl’s body in the woods. It is shown that she can hear echoes of the dead, like music. Her Grandma Louise also had this weird gift.
  • Violet goes back to school after the summer. Jay, her best friend, has suddenly gotten HOT. He even has his own little fanclub. Violet kinda likes him in a more-than-friendly way.
  • The killer goes up to a girl with a flat tyre and offers to help. She doesn’t have a cell phone. He knocks her out and puts her in the trunk of his car.
  • Violet is the niece of the chief of police, Stephen. She often babysits for him and his wife.
  • Violet goes to a party at a lake house, and comes across a dead body in the water. She was able to find it because she could see lights coming from the water. It was an echo.
  • A girl called Brooke – who went to a different school to Violet – turns up dead.
  • Violet agrees to go to Homecoming with Jay’s friend, Grady. She only agrees to go once she learns that Jay is hanging out with Lissie, the pretty and popular girl. Jay is also taking Lissie to Homecoming.
  • Violet returns home after shopping with some friends, and her mother tells her that a girl called Hailey has gone missing. Violet asks Jay if he could help her find the murderer/kidnapper by walking around in public places and seeing if she can feel an imprint. Jay agrees.
  • At the mall, Violet senses an imprint. This one tastes of garlic. It turns out to be a young teenage boy, who is way too young to be the killer, and is probably “just” someone who kills animals. For now, anyway.
  • Since Jay is avoiding Violet after the mall incident, she asks Grady to take her to the cemetery to see Brooke’s grave. Violet goes and memorises Brooke’s echo, which sounds like bells.
  • Violet goes to a party and comes across a drunk Grady. She offers to drive him home, but when they get to the car Grady starts to kiss her. He doesn’t stop when Violet tells him to. Jay turns up and pulls Grady off of her, and hits him. He drives Violet home, and kisses her. Naww.
  • A girl called Mackenzie, who was at the same party as Violet was, goes missing. Violet joins the search party to try to find her. She hears Brooke’s echo – the bells – and traces them to a man in the search party. He also has the imprints of the other girls on him. He also seems to be guarding another body – that of Hailey. Violet calls her uncle over and he arrests the killer.
  • Violet and Jay get together. Woop!
  • Stephen fills Violet in on what happened with the killer. It turns out that he owns a farm nearby and has lived there his entire life. The thing is, he didn’t confess to the murder of Mackenzie, yet he confessed to all the others. Stephen takes Violet to the killer’s house to take a look around.
  • It turns out that there is a second killer! Spine-tingling stuff. This second guy watches as Violet searches the farmhouse with the cops. He decides that Violet needs to die.
  • Violet goes for a run. The second killer follows her. Violet hears his imprint. She runs and falls over, but Jay finds her. Violet is taken to hospital, is treated for an injured ankle, and she tells everyone about the guy who was following her in the woods.

how did it end?

Violet goes to Homecoming with Jay and her friends. They’re all having a great time – Jay even bought a new car in time for the dance – until the second killer shows up at the school. He encounters Violet when she’s alone in the hall. Violet tries to act clueless, but the killer tells her that he’s done some research on her. He knows that she’s found bodies before. He also says that Mackenzie’s body has been buried where Hailey’s was, to trick the police. The killer wants to kill Violet.

Jay realises that Violet’s missing and goes looking for her. He finds her and the killer in the hall. Violet tries to lie to him to make him go away, but Jay is having none of it. Jay and Violet start to run, but Jay gets knocked out. Then Stephen arrives and shoots the killer, killing him. It turns out that the killer was one of Stephen’s police officers. The cops find Mackenzie’s body. Stephen now has his own imprint – a bitter dandelion taste.

anything else

Echo – What Violet senses on dead bodies. It can be related to either taste, scent, sight, or sound.
Imprint – What Violet senses on people who have killed animals or people.

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