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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

Fascinated by forensics, seventeen-year-old Cameryn Mahoney persuades her father, the county coroner in sleepy Silverton, CO, to take her on as his assistant. But she never expects her first case to involve the death of a friend! Rachel Geller, a beautiful young waitress, is found strangled in a field with a Christopher medal around her neck—clearly marking her as the fourth victim of a serial killer. Cameryn is determined to help find Rachel’s killer, and attending the autopsy gives her the first clue. But as she follows her instincts and gets closer to the killer, Cameryn suddenly finds herself on the verge of becoming his fifth victim!…

Overall Book Review:

Seventeen-year-old Cameryn has just convinced her dad, the county coroner, to take her on as his assistant. Now they have a murder on their hands, and Cammie knows the victim.

Cammie believes in science, but the famous psychic, Dr. Jewel, claims to have spoken to the victim. Should Cammie stick with her science and religion or should she enlist the help of Dr. Jewel? As Cammie investigates, she finds her own life’s in danger as well.

Not for the squeamish! The book describes one body that’s decaying and goes through the beginning steps of an autopsy.

On the first page of the book, Cammie overhears her father, the coroner, talking about a dead body, and in the first chapter Cammie convinces her dad to take her on as his assistant. However, the book doesn’t race along until mid-way through Chapter 14 and continuing through Chapter 16, the next-to-last chapter.  

Reading Level: 4.7, range 3.1-6.2.

Of interest to girls.

This review has been acquired and adapted from

Content Analysis:

This review was acquired from on May 15, 2014 and was not completed using Compass Book Ratings’ standardized checklist.  Nevertheless, it contains useful content information which is included here.  The overall number ratings have been approximated based on this information.

13 G*ds

Mention of serial killer who kills young women and leaves a Saint Christopher medal on them; mention of a prostitute who was murdered; wife killed husband by splitting skull with meat cleaver; victim’s body’s position described, not gruesome; woman describes finding body; mention of a lady who drowned her kids; mention of woman who hanged herself; mention of a body of a suicide who shot himself in the head. Killer aims gun at heroine, waves it in her face; killer tells heroine to drink roofies or he’ll shoot her; heroine tells him to shoot her, calling his bluff; killer cocks gun; room door is kicked in, sheriff and deputy arrive with guns, threaten to kill if killer doesn’t drop his gun. Detailed description of a body, dead several days, including flies and maggots, heroine throws up from smell. Heroine’s emotions on seeing dead body; they photograph corpse, roll body, put it into carrier; bleeding in eyes and bruising, suggest victim was strangled; smell of autopsy lab described; heroine thinks about when she’ll be cutting into bodies; mention of equipment used for autopsies—saws and other cutting instruments, needles and syringes; smell of bowel content mentioned; doctor puts needle into eye, eyeball shrinks; comment that many murders go unsolved despite good forensics; description of incisions doctor makes on corpse; pruning shears used to cut ribs; heart cut out and sliced open; description of coroner’s report

Heroine wonders if young man was looking at her rear end; mention of a prostitute who was murdered; mention of a wife who caught drunk husband cheating on her; question whether murder victim was sexually assaulted, mention of rape kit—turns out not to have been sexually assaulted; corpse is stripped, heroine embarrassed for her dead friend, cloth placed over victim’s hips; St. Christopher medal found in victim’s bra; mention that victim’s breasts disappear as skin on ribs peeled back. 

Mature Subject Matter:

Murder, death, rape, psychic

Alcohol / Drug Use:

Teenager smokes throughout story, disapproved throughout; adults drink beer, accepted; killer uses roofies to subdue victims.

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

On May 15, 2014 Compass Book Ratings acquired Many reviews were acquired from and these reviews were not completed using Compass Book Ratings’ standardized checklist. Nevertheless, the reviews contain useful content information which is included.