Violet is still exploring her romance with Jay as the second installment in the Body Finder Series by Kimberly Derting begins. As they try to get back to normal after the terrifying events at the dance at the end of the first book, Violet is attempting to reconcile her ability to sense dead bodies and live a normal teenager’s life. That’s made all the more complicated when she senses another body locked inside a shipping container and, when she lets the authorities know, she may have given herself away.
Mike and Megan, a new pair of siblings moves to town, and suddenly Violet is competing with Mike for Jay’s attention when she needs him more than ever. Violet struggles to maintain honesty in her relationship with Jay as she fears having her ability discovered. When she starts receiving anonymous, threatening messages and learns a secret about Mike and Megan, she has to decide who to trust. If she doesn’t decide soon, they could all be in danger.
Honestly, I was disappointed in this sequel. I was so intrigued by Violet’s ability in the first book and she seems to be a refreshing type of female protagonist. She has both parents who are at home and involved. She has a solid network of friends and has established what seems to be a healthy romantic relationship. She is equal parts decisive and doubtful, as most teenagers are. But she seems to unravel in the second book. She becomes more indecisive and almost whiny. She doesn’t trust anyone, not even Jay, who is the one person who seemed to be a constant in the first book.
In addition to Violet’s unraveling character, the plot in this book seemed weak. I felt it was a little too predictable and the pacing seemed off. I was pretty sure I had it figured out by the time the first message appeared. And, more than in the first novel, Violet seems controlled by the echoes she hears. I always got the sense in the first book that Violet was in control. Here in the second book, it seems that Violet is merely being pushed around by all the different forces she faces. It’s almost as if the plot took over the characters.
All in all, a disappointing second installment. I have to give it a THUMBS DOWN. However, I like Derting’s writing style and the length of her books is suitable for readers who may shy away from longer tomes but are interested in paranormal fiction. I am anxious to see if Derting continues Violet’s story and if a subsequent book will redeem Violet for me. I have heard marvelous things about The Pledge and am hopeful that Derting will deliver with this new book.