Book Spotlight: The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barns
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.
We meet Cassie as she’s working at a restaurant, her natural ability of reading people playing out in her mind. She’s very good at studying someone and giving a rundown of an individual. Then, Michael walks in. He asks her a few random questions, leaves a business card, and walks out. The card is from FBI and they want Cassie and her particular set of skills.
When Cassie arrives at the house, she finds a few other kids much like herself. They too have special abilities and they are being trained to solve cold cases. Yet, as the events unfold, it’s clear that there is more going on than meets the eye.
Now, I’m a huge fan of Criminal Minds and this book was pitched as that for YA. Needless to say, I was super excited to get an opportunity to review it. I really did enjoy this book. It was a super quick read for me. I may have had too many expectations for it to be like Criminal Minds.
I liked Cassie just fine. She had some good qualities and some annoying ones. Which I guess just makes her human. I was a huge fan of her determination. I’m excited to see how her character develops in the future.
On the other hand, we have the boys. I’m probably the only one cheering for Dean here, but I can’t help it. I love his broody gorgeous heroic self. Yes, I see the appeal of Michael and all his bad boy rep. But I’m so honestly done with bad boys. I feel like they’re automatically the winners in every story nowdays. What about them good boys? Come on now.
Overall, this was a good story with some interesting characters. I really like the feel of the story and I’m excited to see where Jennifer takes it next. This book is out today! Let me know what you think!