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The Body Finder

(The Body Finder #1)

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  55,233 ratings  ·  3,984 reviews
A gripping tale of a girl with a morbid ability that could lead her to a killer . . . and the boy who would never let anything happen to her.

Sixteen-year-old Violet Ambrose is grappling with two major issues: Jay Heaton and her unusual so-called gift. While her confusing feelings for her best friend are new, she has been able to sense dead bodies—or at least those that hav
Paperback, 329 pages
Published February 15th 2011 by HarperCollins (first published March 16th 2010)
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Average rating 3.92  · 
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 ·  55,233 ratings  ·  3,984 reviews

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Sarah MacLean
May 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: debs2009, young-adult
scary thriller + yummy romance = book that made me miss my subway stop.

yes. it's that good.
This review has been edited since its original posting.

I normally won’t touch books that I didn’t finish because I think it’s unfair for me to judge without thoroughly examining the product. The Body Finder is one of the rare exceptions because I hated this book so much I just need to – and I mean need to - a) warn my great Goodreading friends to stay away b), get this piece of work out of my mind for good and c) vent. But just a little bit.

So, I’ll skip the intro and get right to the dirty:

It's a little bit difficult for me to rate this book.
Don't get me wrong, I did enjoy it in parts and it was definitely not boring (I finished it in a few hours), but I had expected more.

Violet can sense echoes; feelings, smells, colours or sounds left behind by murder victims, which not only make it possible for her to locate dead bodies but also to find their murderer.
So far, she mostly had to deal with dead animals, but when a cruel serial killer is on the loose in her hometown, she believes
Sara Grochowski
Jul 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own

Okay, I realize that it is ridiculously early to be posting a review of this book, but really, with a book this good, who cares?

I am, quite simply, in love with this book! I read it three days ago and I'm still in love with it. I'm considering rereading it - I RARELY EVER reread books!

The Body Finder has so many elements that really appealed to me. Firstly, I found the serial killer and murder mystery aspect of the book really well done. I'm a big fan of show
Aug 05, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed, 2012
The Body Finder is an unfortunate example of wasted potential. I am sad to say that, because I feel that Kimberly Derting throws out some great ideas, ones that could have been amazing, but inevitably fell short and got buried under a nauseating romantic plot and a sea of characters who were nothing more than stereotypes.

I loved the beginning of the novel. We start off with a young Violet finding the body of a dead child. If the whole story had followed in the footsteps of the prologue/first cha
Feb 28, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No One
This book sucked.

I won't go into great detail about how badly this book sucked, because if you're drawn to it, you'll probably have to find out on your own. But suck it did.

Derting's book has an interesting premise; her main character, Violet, can sense the location of murder victims. Her gift is hereditary, and she inherited it from her grandmother. Everyone in her family, and her best friend Jay, know about the gift. As a small child, she found the location of a murdered girl. For some time af
Two stars because it was compelling enough for me to finish, although I wouldn't recommend it to anyone else. There's a lot of telling in this book. Whole scenes are told to you instead of actually occurring in a way you can read about them. The author would benefit from a basic writing class or twelve. There are numerous interactions between Violet and a boy who is not her love interest but rather an obstacle before her love interest. This interactions are unimportant, at least according to the ...more
2.5 stars

This is a hard one for me to rate. First off, I flew through it - it's an easy and fairly addictive read - but I don't think it's a book that will linger or be a favourite.

For a serial killer book, it wasn't that creepy and there weren't clues for the reader to feel a part of the investigation (which is part of the thrill for me as a reader). I can't help but think of books in this similar genre in Adult fiction which pack a lot more punch, and maybe it's unfair to compare a YA novel wi
Dec 04, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Bella Swan
I don't remember what inspired me to add this to my TBR list, but possibly I was swayed by all of the 4 & 5 star reviews. Unfortunately, there are sooo many reasons I disliked this book, that I don't even know where to begin :( So, rather than writing a proper review, I'm just making a list of issues, starting with:

Violet's "power" We learn that Violet, the protagonist, has the ability to sense dead people & animals. Basically, she feels an overwhelming pull in a certain direction and will be le
Annie Brewer
Nov 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Every freaking one!!
Recommended to Annie by: Vee-you rock!!
Ohhhhhh. Emmmmm. Geeeeeeeee.! This is my new favorite series!!!! Holy crappadoodle!!! Fdgdrtesacvnkoyessxcnooyrecbhtrd hfdh. Yea that's what I said! Review to come as soon as my head clears!! This book left me speechless!!!!!

Okay, I think I am composed enough to write this review now. Sorry, my head was reeling from the events that took place before my very fearful eyes. WHEW!!!! It was a whirlwind for sure. So, upon reading this, I had bought this book along with its sequel about 3 months ago.
Oh. My. Goodness.


It took forever for me to finish this book, and I don't enjoy a mere second of it. Yes, reading The Body Finder is as painful as having my teeth pulled out one by one.

Get the picture now?

You may want to know, just how bad The Body Finder actually is?

Well, let me tell you one thing: You just know something must have gone terribly wrong with a book when you would rather read about an evil serial killer kidnapping and hurting innocent girls than rea
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Me for

Bear with me for a moment as I gush fanatically about how much I loved THE BODY FINDER like some crazed Twilighter who has just caught a glimpse of Robert Pattinson. I loved this book. Absolutely, totally, completely loved it. I want to, as I used to say when I was seven, marry this book. If I could, I would erase it from my memory and go back and read it all over again, just to experience it anew. And, right this minute, I would gladly give up either of my chi
If I were to compile a list of the times characters in books make ridiculously stupid decisions, Violet Ambrose would fill several slots in the top 40 or so. There are at least 10 conversations in this book about how Violet should never go anywhere alone and they ALL end up with her being somewhere alone almost directly after each one. I wanted to punch her in the face. But, as you can see, I gave it three stars. Why? Well, mostly because Jay is a pretty adorable character. I liked their friend ...more
Melissa Marr
Mar 21, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The blurb sent to the editor: “The romance and the mystery in The Body Finder were intense enough that I didn’t know whether to hold my breath or scream. I did know I wouldn’t be getting anything done until I read the whole book.”
This book is readable & will probably appeal to some teens. That makes me sad.

Sorry to those of you who liked it, but this book has more flaws than I can count. The premise of a girl with a supernatural ability to sense (hear, smell, see, etc.) murder victims and their killers was a cool one. The problem is that the mystery had flaws. It was not solvable by the reader - despite reading occasional mini-chapters from the killer's point of view - because the reader doesn't really meet the killer an
Apr 02, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
What the hell? Why is this book rated so highly? All I read was a boring and undeveloped typical YA PNR. The protagonist was a walking blob with no personality and almost as dull as that chick from Fallen. The only redeeming factor I found was Jay, who is the only character the author seemed to have put much effort into. The mystery was an absolute fail, and I was not creeped out in the least. Does laughing hysterically at the stupidity of this count?

That's all I have to say. I got this for $1.9
The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

You know, books like these really make me stop and ask book lovers like myself a really important question. WHY OH WHY DID IT TAKE ME SO LONG TO READ THIS? SERIOUSLY! This book has been sitting on my shelf now for months. I remember it being on my to-read list for god knows how long and how excited I was to read it but after I bought it, I just didn't pick it up again. And now that I have read it...I have to say that I am amazed!

I mean, when I first started reading this, my rating for the bo
The Body Finder is the story of Violet Ambrose. Violet is a normal high school student in every way but one: She can find the imprint of dead people and she can sense people that have had contact with the dead. This gift becomes handy because there is a serial killer on the loose in her town. At a party by the lake, Violet and her best friend Jay find one of the killer's victims in the lake.

Let me say a few words about Jay. Jay is the perfect best friend and later on the perfect boyfriend, prob
Another great debut to add to the list!

The Body Finder is one of those can't flip the pages fast enough novels. And the point of view chapters from the serial killer added a creep factor like no other ya novel I've read! It was enough to make afraid to be out alone at night...!

I loved the relationship between Jay and Violet. It's so very obvious that they both have feelings for each other and watching their relationship progress was probably my most favorite aspect of the novel. It really balanc
Liza Gilbert
I consider the main theme of this book to be Priorities Out of Whack, or Which Story Am I Reading?

Story 1: Violet has the ability to find dead things, especially things or people that have been murdered. When a serial killer strikes and then starts stalking Violet, she must act to save herself and those she loves.

Story 2: Oh. My. God. Jay is Sooooo HAWT! I know he's my bff, but suddenly I want him.

One would rationally think that having a supernatural power and being caught up in string of murder
Sep 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
WOW! I cannot believe that I waited so long to read this! This is the second book that I have read where the two main love interests have known each other since they were anklebiters and I am loving this concept. Violet and Jay are one of my favorite couples of all time and really I could squee and gush about them forever.
The story is far from simple. Violet ever since she can remember has been able to sense death in a variety of ways. She sees, tastes, or feels an "echo" from a dead body or fro
Nov 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first book I read on my Kindle and I enjoyed it immensely. At first I thought the story was pretty predictable, because after a few chapters I was so sure I figured out who the killer was. (I'm such a clever girl *beams*) Turns out I was absolutely wrong, thank god. ^^

I would have liked to read more about the motive behind the killings. They are explained, but very very briefly. This will make me sound like total wack job but serial killers are interesting people if you look at them
Chelsea ❤Peril Please❤
*4.5 Stars*

A quick, fast-paced read that I almost finished in one day. I literally had to slow down so I didn't have two reviews to write in the same day because I was just reading THAT fast. TBF was one of those stories that while it wasn't anything new or groundbreaking, it was fun and took me away from the real world for a bit. It was an escape from reality and it was a change of pace-it came at the perfect time.

He reached out, capturing her hand in his. He laced his fingers casually through
Oct 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Isn't Jay the perfect boyfriend ever? :D

I just LOVED the romance in this book. It felt real for once, you get know why Vi loved Jay - and it was not just a silly crush over his messy hair, or deep eyes or any other thing like that - and you get to love him too for being such a sweet guy. That's because he is so nice to her, always supportive, understanding her (no need for words) and so romantic, and funny.. They are perfect for each other and you get to feel that. For the first time I felt
Nov 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
4.5 stars!

Oh my gosh!

I loved this book, so much. I didn't know what to expect going into this, all I knew was that the blurb had me intrigued. The body finder had everything I look for in a book; a little bit of romance and not only were the main characters amazing and the plot intriguing, but Kimberly Derting's writing style really added to the thrilling side of the novel.

I really enjoyed the romance within the book and liked how it wasn't insta love or rush and how it intertwined with the p
Michelle, the Bookshelf Stalker  Queen of the Undead
This book is a young adult book. I'm in my thirties. Okay, so maybe I'm not giving the book a fair chance. So, I took my 14 year old daughter, and read some of the dialogue between the two main characters (both in their teens). She laughed and said "who in their right mind would ever talk like that". Ok, so maybe it was because I was reading her the dialogue out of context. I don't know.

The book seemed like many of the suspense books I read years ago. The "body finder" angle didn't even seem or
Amy Plum
Someone warned me I would fall for Jay. They were right. What a sweet "first love" story (with lots of kissing!). Add a horrific murder mystery and a new paranormal mythology, and it was definitely a page-turning fun read. I'm definitely buying the sequel! ...more
Kami Garcia
A great and original novel, with a strong female protag and a believable romance!
Morgan F
Sixteen year old Violet Ambrose is like any other teenager except she has the ability to sense the murdered. Whether it is a mouse that her cat killed, or the girl she found buried in the woods when she was little, the murdered and the things that killed them are tainted by echoes, which can be sounds, sights, and smells. Despite this morbid ability, Violet has always had the support of her family and her best friend, Jay. But now there is a serial killer loose in town, one that is killing young ...more
Jan 12, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
1.) Do not sprain your ankle when there is a killer on the loose and he has pegged you as his next victim.
2.) Do not go into an empty washroom located in a dark, abandoned hallway when there is a killer on the loose and he has pegged you as his next victim.
3.) If your boyfriend pins you down and forces you to tell him you love him, you may want to re-evaluate your relationship with him.
4.) If your friends lead you towards an empty washroom located in a dark, abandoned hallway wh
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Kimberly is the author of the award-winning THE BODY FINDER series, THE PLEDGE, and THE TAKING trilogies. She is also the co-author of the popular "Loves Science" picture book series, featuring our favorite science-loving superstars Cece, Libby, and Vivi!

Her books have been translated into 15 languages, and both THE BODY FINDER and THE PLEDGE were YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults selections.


Other books in the series

The Body Finder (4 books)
  • Desires of the Dead (The Body Finder, #2)
  • The Last Echo (The Body Finder, #3)
  • Dead Silence (The Body Finder, #4)

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“He loved her.
Jay Heaton, her best friend since childhood was in love with her. He didn't say it but she knew that it was true.
And the part that really freaked her out, the part that caught her completely off guard, is that he wasn't alone. Because even though she'd been denying it for a long, long time, it had always been there... waiting beneath the surface of their friendship. And now that it was out there was no going back.
And it was so weird to even be thinking it but...... she was in love with him too.”
“What are you doing here?" she asked as she slowed from a jog to a walk and placed her hands on her hips. It would take her a few minutes to get her breathing back to normal. Longer if he kept smiling at her like that.
He shrugged. "I couldn't sleep. What about you?"
She opted for the obvious and filled her voice with as much sarcasm as she could. "I live here, actually”
More quotes…