I thought it was okay/pretty good. For what it was written for (a young adult novel about a girl with raging hormones and keen intuition) it wasn't that bad. I only marked a few places where the writing offended me. This sentence drove me crazy, "After scrutinizing herself in the mirror and noting the dark circles beneath her eyes, she once again thought about how badly she wanted to crawl back beneath the mound of already cooling blankets that covered her bed like an inviting nest" (pg 6). Um, okay. Also the dialogue from Greg Ambrose to Violet on page 67 didn't sound like dialogue at all--just information worked into dialogue. "When you were little, we were worried when you first started finding dead animals....blah, blah, blah." Changing point of view on page 302 was a little disjointing, "Claire wanted so badly to join in on the catty conversation, but she was terrible at finding other people's flaws...still she gave it her best shot." Then there were those sentences that just didn't make sense. These sentences usually occurred when Jay and Violet were making out. It was so confusing I couldn't even picture what the heck those two love birds were doing exactly--which was totally okay with me, btw. The adverbs also got to be a little much. On pages 306-307 I read nine adverbs: momentarily, instinctively, casually, perfectly, immediately, thoughtfully, really, tightly, and violently." I just wanted to say, "Ok, ok, I get it, I get it."
Also, I don't know if anyone else felt this way while reading the book, but sometimes I felt like the author was reliving her glory days. I wondered if maybe some of the events and places she was describing came from her own life experiences and even her journal. Call me crazy but I felt this way at least a few times. The way she described her beater car and the Homecoming dance and some other things, I just can't think of them right now. They felt like a journal entry to me. (Anybody else think this while they were reading?)
Not only were the descriptions overkill, the idealistic nature of Jay and Violet's developing relationship was darn near irritating. It seemed that everything about Jay and he and Violet's relationship was "flawless" and "absolutely perfect." Those are heavy words that you don't want to drop casually. After a while the making out got to be a nuisance and I wanted to throw up toward the end of the book. Ok, so he's the most perfect boyfriend in the whole world and you two couldn't be happier. Okay, I get it. I liked it better when you guys were sexually frustrated. (Or maybe I'm just jealous since my husband and I are way past the fun, lusty days of teen infatuation).
That brings us to my biggest pet peeve. JAY. There is no such thing as the perfect guy. No guy expect Edward maybe. Or Peeta. And that's just because they're both so freaking cool. Peeta and Edward have both earned their stripes. They are amazing and awesome because we know who they are and we respect them, not because they are flawless characters. I liked Jay a lot, but he just didn't feel real to me. At least not the way that he was written. How could a guy of his age really understand and appreciate a girl like he does? What has happened in his life to make him realize that Violet is the one for him? Why is it that a young man at his age is so good to her? I never got that.
Overall I thought the pace was good. Also, the suspense was pretty good. I did laugh a few times when I knew the writer was trying to keep us in suspense when I knew all along that the officer she ran into in the woods was the other killer and that it was her uncle who shot the guy in the back and that Jay was alive.
There were a few things that didn't make sense to me like why didn't Violet feel an echo from Mackenzie Sherwin when she was so close to her killer and so close to her body? I also thought it was funny that nobody guessed that maybe the other killer had seen Violet at the house identifying dead things. Other than those things I really liked the book and I enjoyed reading it. Well, most of it. I admit that I did skip over the pages written from the killer's point of view. Too creepy for me. Besides I read the book at night and I didn't want to give myself bad dreams. In fact, I would have finished the book in one sitting but once I got to the part where she was being chased in the woods I put the book down so I could finish it in the morning. Overall, great, fast read, really enjoyed it. Thanks Markie.
So there you have it. My absolutely perfectly perfect review of The Body Finder, by Kimberly McPerfect Derting.