Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Last Echo, by Kimberly Derting

- The Body Finder #3
Release date: April 17th 2012
Published by: Harper Collins
Genre: Young Adult
Rating: 3/5 stars
Find it on: Goodreads, Amazon, Book Depository

In the end, all that's left is an echo...
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....

 My thoughts:

The Body Finder and Desires of the Dead were adorable books. I loved the story, the characters (even when Violet turned into a Mary Sue sometimes), and the romance. The Last Echo had it all, but not as strongly as I thought. Of course, the mystery behind the girls' disappearance was still there, Violet was still struggling with her powers, and the FBI team was an important part of the story. But maybe that's the problem.

In The Last Echo, Violet doesn't deal with relationship issues. She doesn't even deal with family issues. Most of the story is focused on Violet herself, and her ability to use her gift as something good, and not let it control her, or dominate her life. Sara Priest and her team, specially Rafe, help Violet with this. It's obvious, form the beginning, how the author wants us to understand Violet's gift, and go right along with her everytime she has to use it. Which would've been fine by me, but the book's plot doesn't go any further than that. 

The biggest flaw in The Last Echo was the author's incapability of working with two things at the same time. In The Body Finder, the plot basically consists of world-building. In Desires of the Dead,  it's all about the romance. In The Last Echo, it's all about the FBI. This is exhausting. Most dialogues had someone from the team in it, and the other aspects of Violet's life, like, say, her family, and even Jay, were ignored. Jay is barely mentioned in this novel. This bothered me a lot, not because I love their relationship (which is true), but because it doesn't make any sense. If you're going to talk about the FBI, fine, do it, but don't exclude everything else. 

One of the few things that pleased me was Rafe himself - he was a pain in the ass sometimes, but overall, I loved his personality -, and The Collector. Yep, I loved the villain. He's the creepiest guy Kimberly Derting has ever talked about. He kidnaps girls for love. He thinks his behavior is normal, and he actually cares about the them, in some twisted, sick way. Violet handled herself a lot better than I thought she would, in the ending. I liked this character development. In The Body Finder, she cringed and tried to scream, but otherwise didn't struggle much. In The Last Echo, all bets are off. She did whatever she had to do to survive.

The premise was awesome... but the book itself, not so much. I'm still looking forward to next one, and I sincerely hope it'll be better than The Last Echo. Nonetheless, it's still a great read. 

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