The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Synopsis: 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 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.

Review: I didn’t know this author, but I confess that the synopsis immediately attracted me. I love investigations books but I do not think I’ve ever read such mixed with YA or not a lot. So I was curious to see how it was going to be and I must say that I was completely conquered.

Cassie is a young girl who lives with her family since the murder of her mother. A case that haunts her since childhood, particularly due to the fact that the body was never found, as the murderer. Yet this is not the only thing that differentiates her from other girls. Indeed, Cassandra also has the most interesting gift, she is able to profile people who move around her without any difficulty. However, she did not expect that this ability would really serve her in anything. She is therefore more than surprised when the FBI approaches her so that she can incorporate some kind of elite where other young people like her work and help in some old files unresolved. However, when the case of her mother catches her up, she will be forced to face danger and try to understand what happens before becoming herself a target.

I enjoyed following the story and the heroine featured here. Cassie is a strong girl despite all she has suffered. In this new adventure, she will also have to be even stronger and face her fears and get into the heads of serial killers, something that disturbs her at the highest point. She is also quite frightened to be able to understand them. But she will not be alone in this adventure and Dean will always be there to share her experiences. He is a boy who has a gift for profiling like her but as she tries to get closer to him, Dean is doing everything to keep her at bay. Yet he is equally mysterious and it is quite difficult for him to understand who he is and what he wants exactly. He is however not the only one to get closer to our heroine and we can also meet Michael, the boy who can read people and who seems strangely attracted to this girl. But he also hides many secrets and I was eager to learn more about him. I do not know if I could choose between the two boys and I’m curious to see what will happen afterwards. Of course, there are others equally exciting and you will take a great pleasure in discovering all the characters.

Everything was really exciting and I was completely swept away by the plot. This is also why the book only lasted me a few hours. I was curious to find out what exactly had happened to Cassie’s mother and who was responsible for the murders that intrigue our girl. And I must say that I was completely surprised when I found out the truth at the end of the novel. It was something that I did not expect at all, and the author has managed to fool me perfectly throughout the novel. I am very curious in any case now to learn more and I’ll read with pleasure the next one. A very good book to discover! A nice mix of investigation, murder and many intriguing characters.



14 thoughts on “The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

  1. Great review I read this in no time, too. I had a fun time with the mystery of the killer and I was actually taken by surprise by some parts of the ending which is so rare! So yay! Glad you liked it! 🙂

  2. I really don’t like the cover, but I do want the book. Only, if her mother’s body was never found, nor the killer, how do they know she was murdered and not ran off with somebody?

  3. I love criminal profiling so I get why this series is attractive and a YA novel at that. You should give Tim O’Rourke’s Kiera Hudson series a try. She’s an amazing criminal profiler but the plot is urban fantasy however his vamps are quite different from what we’re used to reading about.

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