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The Body Finder

The Body Finder - Kimberly Derting This book started off so well. Derting had no qualms about showing violence and drinking and corpses - it was all slightly gruesome and ultra-realistic. I truly enjoyed the start. But once the annoying teen romance became disgustingly codependent and very unattractive, the flaws started to show. And I'm afraid The Body Finder descended into the deep, dark pit of cliche and boredom.

It's such a shame, because The Body Finder could have been fantastic. I loved the main idea of the novel - a girl with unpleasant superpowers uses her gift in for good! She has parents that understand and support her, a best friend who understands and supports her, and some he-said-she-said romance to look forward to. It could have been a great murder mystery, without any annoyingly-avoidable teen angst.

And it was that, for about 150 pages.

But The Body Finder had some issues I couldn't overlook. Some pretty serious ones. As soon as Violet starts dating her BFF-turned-love-of-her-life Jay (that can't be a spoiler, right? even from the summary, you saw that one coming) he becomes almost parental. He starts meeting with her father to "discuss" her issues, while Violet's sole focus in life becomes the friggin' prom. Sure, the murders which dominated the first half of the book are important, but what-oh-what should she wear? Now let's cuddle on the couch with Jay and consider what a nice guy he is.

My eyes were rolling so hard, something nearly broke.

Perhaps this annoying change in Violet and Jay could have been smoothed over by the excuse of first love and a fascinating mystery to focus on. Except, that murder mystery we'd all been enjoying? It also descends into the aforementioned dark pit of cliche. No motive for the villains - not even a slightly psychotic one. Hell, the villains are so generic, they aren't even named! Literally, no names. "Oh, Violet, I'll never forget the time you caught that murderer... He-who-was-never-named, was it?"

Oh, and we can add The Body Finder to the list of YA books that have sexual assault (not full-on rape, but non-consensual contact) go unpunished - in this case, actually forgiven by the main character. Not cool.

Bottom line? The Body Finder left a bad taste in my mouth. Although the book started off really well, I won't be continuing with the series. However, Derting is a pretty decent writer and I could be coerced into reading something else by her.