Monday, January 5, 2015

Review: The Naturals by Jennifer Lyons Barnes


Title: The Naturals
  Author: Jennifer Lyons Barnes
  Publisher: Disney- Hyperion
  Publication Date: November 5th, 2013
  Page Count: 308
Genre: Mystery
Age Range: 13+
Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Seventeen-year-old Cassie is a natural at reading people. Piecing together the tiniest details, she can tell you who you are and what you want. But it’s not a skill that she’s ever taken seriously. That is, until the FBI come knocking: they’ve begun a classified program that uses exceptional teenagers to crack infamous cold cases, and they need Cassie.

What Cassie doesn’t realize is that there’s more at risk than a few unsolved homicides—especially when she’s sent to live with a group of teens whose gifts are as unusual as her own. Sarcastic, privileged Michael has a knack for reading emotions, which he uses to get inside Cassie’s head—and under her skin. Brooding Dean shares Cassie’s gift for profiling, but keeps her at arm’s length.

Soon, it becomes clear that no one in the Naturals program is what they seem. And when a new killer strikes, danger looms closer than Cassie could ever have imagined. Caught in a lethal game of cat and mouse with a killer, the Naturals are going to have to use all of their gifts just to survive.
My Thoughts:
Hmmmm...... wow. This book was crazy! It was definitely not what i was expecting. However, I do not know if it was better or worse than what I was expecting (which is confusing)

So, the book started off with the a teenage girl named Cassie. She was taught by her mother how to read people. She looks at how they act, what they wear, and what they say to profile them. When her mother was murdered when she younger, she was sent to live with her father's family. She always felt that she was an outsider. So, when she is invited to join a special program (the Naturals) to train as a "profiler, " she jumps at the opportunity. She ends up living in a house with four other Naturals who are trained to help the FBI solve cold cases. As Cassie lives there, she finds more and more out about her mother's murder.

I loved the idea of the book. Cassie and Dean (another profiler) had to get into the heads to the serial killers and figure out what their signature and MO would be. I thought this idea was so cool and the way that Cassie and Dean are able to put themselves into the shoes of someone like this is just crazy.

I also thought that the way that that this program fit into her mother's murder was interesting. I will not tell you how and why but how that led to the ending was unexpected and really suspenseful (AHHHHHHH -> that was my reaction).

However, I did think that it was missing something. I feel like I always say this ... but yeah. I could not connect to the characters that well and I thought that the the author did not dive deep into the character's personalities. It was just like skimming the surface. This was especially seen with the "romance" in this novel (if you can even call it that)

Overall, I thought that The Naturals was a really fun and thought provoking read. However, I was not very emotionally involved in the book. I thought it was good, but I do not know if I will read the second one or not. 
My Rating: ****
Cover Rating: Its okay
Recommendations:
1. This Wicked Game by Michelle Zink
2. The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting
3. Find Me by Romily Bernard
Now on to your thoughts, what do you think?

Sincerely,
a Book Nerd

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