The Last Echo by Kimberly Derting, published by Headline on 29th March 2012
Violet kept her morbid ability to sense dead bodies a secret from everyone except her family and her childhood-best-friend-turned-boyfriend, Jay Heaton. That is until forensic psychologist Sara Priest discovered Violet’s talent and invited her to use her gift to track down murderers. Now, as she works with an eclectic group of individuals—including mysterious and dangerously attractive Rafe—it’s Violet’s job to help those who have been murdered by bringing their killers to justice.
When Violet discovers the body of a college girl killed by “the girlfriend collector” she is determined to solve the case. But now the serial killer is on the lookout for a new “relationship” and Violet may have caught his eye....
This is the third book in the Body Finder series by Kimberly Derting. I'm a massive fan of this series and have been eagerly anticipating the release of 'The Last Echo' for months. I'm pleased to say that it didn't disappoint at all and I think it might actually be my favourite so far.
Violet is now working for Sara Priest's organisation. It was interesting seeing her having to adjust to other people knowing about her abilities outside of her family and Jay. She wants to try and use her ability to prevent people from dying, rather than just finding their bodies after their deaths. She has her toughest job so far to face when she tries to stop a serial killed nicknamed The Collector. The book is interspersed with chapters from his perspective which made for some really creepy reading.
Now that Violet is part of a team, the story focused much more on her relationships with her new friends and colleagues, rather than her romantic relationship with Jay. He is still present in the book but is often on the periphery. There are still plenty of sweet, romantic moments between the two which made my heart flutter plenty and I have no doubt in my mind that they belong together, but Violet is also having to face up to the feelings that she may have developed for Rafe. They do after all share something that Jay can never experience and it's this which seems to draw them together a lot. There are some intriguing revelations about Rafe in the book and sufficient time is given to developing his character further but I couldn't help wishing that there was less of him and more of Jay.
Violet has always been one of my favourite heroines in ya-literature. She's grown and developed so much throughout the series so far. Sometimes she does rather recklessly put herself in danger but she always does it for a good reason and you can't fault her for her desire to want to help others.
The story itself was absolutely gripping and a real page turner. Clear your day because once you've picked this book up you won't be able to stop until you've reached the end! Kimberly Derting has pulled out all the stops to create a plot which is thrilling, heart pounding and exciting. The final page by itself is jaw-droppingly good and I'm thrilled that there's set to be another book in the series.