Grade 9 Up—This story begins with an intriguing and promising premise: violent deaths leave a unique imprint on the victim and the killer, and Violet Ambrose can sense them. Add in the facts that her uncle is the local police chief and that a serial killer is on the loose, and you have the makings for an exciting suspense/horror novel. Unfortunately,The Body Findernever lives up to its potential. Instead, most of the book deals with the relationship between Violet and her lifelong best buddy, Jay, who has suddenly blossomed into the junior-class hottie. Does he know that she is attracted to him? Does he feel the same about her? Is he really oblivious to all of the girls throwing themselves at him? Could they, should they, will they be more than friends? These questions are mulled over ad nauseam. And when they are finally answered, the writing devolves into near-bodice-ripper style. "She surrendered to the onslaught of his deep, fervent kisses..."; "She heard herself moan and could feel the throbbing of her own pulse flickering hotly through her veins." There is a mystery and some suspense here, but the compelling scenes are too few and far between to redeem the book. Melissa Marr'sWicked Lovely(HarperTeen, 2007) and Rachel Vincent'sMy Soul to Take(Harlequin, 2009) are much better choices.—Anthony C. Doyle, Livingston High School, CA
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