** Our February Book of the Month **Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (February 15, 2011)
Summary: The missing dead call to Violet. They want to be found.
Violet can sense the echoes of those who've been murdered—and the matching imprint that clings to their killers. Only those closest to her know what she is capable of, but when she discovers the body of a young boy she also draws the attention of the FBI, threatening her entire way of life.
As Violet works to keep her morbid ability a secret, she unwittingly becomes the object of a dangerous obsession. Normally she'd turn to her best friend, Jay, except now that they are officially a couple, the rules of their relationship seem to have changed. And with Jay spending more and more time with his new friend Mike, Violet is left with too much time on her hands as she wonders where things went wrong. But when she fills the void by digging into Mike's tragic family history, she stumbles upon a dark truth that could put everyone in danger.
Our review: Kimberly Derting has done it again. She has created a true page-turner, complete with creepy scenes, a tender love story and a young woman with a unique skill which endangers not only herself but those she treasures most. Desires of the Dead kept me glued to my seat, lost in Violet's world, sharing her emotions, her talent for hearing sounds of dead people and animals, witnessing her interactions with her friends, and feeling her fear when someone wants her dead. The story begins with Violet hearing the "echo" of a dead boy while out with best bud, Chelsea. This boy is missing and only she knows where his body is, but if she tells the authorities her talent will be discovered. Can Violet handle that? Does she want to?
In this second installment we are privy to Violet's changing, her maturing and learning to handle her talent. When she is approached by a Profiler, Sara Priest, Violet doesn't trust her. Instead, Vi reaches out to the quiet Rafe who works with Sara and also possesses a certain "skill" she can't label just yet. Meanwhile, Vi grows closer to boyfriend Jay, spends time with Chelsea and meets the new kids in school, brother and sister Mike and Megan. Derting captures the whirlwind of emotions teen girls experience--doubt, mistrust, desire, uncertainty, and the pressures of hormones. Violet grows and becomes more capable with who she is and what she can do, while falling even more in love with Jay. As she gets closer to figuring out the big mystery of the novel and who wants her silenced, the story grabs onto the reader and takes them on a thrilling ride to the snow capped mountains and an exciting climax.
But wait, the story doesn't end with the mystery being solved. Derting throws us an enticing bone--should Violet join Sara and her group of supernaturally gifted people? There is something about the quiet Rafe and his skill which draws Violet to him. We will just have to wait for the next book.
Desires of the Dead will surely please old fans while attracting new fans as well. Make room for Kimberly Derting--as a YA novelist of suspenseful paranormal tales, she is definitely here to stay!
Favorite excerpt: "It almost would have been easy to disregard the tugging she felt coming from the opposite direction. And she tried, closing her eyes and pretending for a moment that she hadn't noticed it at all. But it was visceral, the pull, finding its way beneath her skin and slithering there until she itched with it, until she could no longer ignore its enigmatic lure.
The song of the dead.
And it was calling her." (From page 304, ARC.)
Cover comment: Lovely shade of pink. I thought it was symbolic of the awakening inside of Violet of many things fans will discover as they read.
Book source: International Book tours