Synopsis of The North Face of the Heart
Amaia Salazar, a young detective from the north of Spain, has joined a group of trainees at the FBI Academy in Virginia.
Haunted by her past and having already tracked down a predator on her own, Amaia is no typical rookie. And this is no ordinary student lecture at Quantico.
FBI agent Aloisius Dupree is already well acquainted with Amaia’s skills, her intuition, and her ability to understand evil.
He now needs her help in hunting an elusive serial killer dubbed “the Composer”—a case that’s been following him his whole life.
From New Jersey to Oklahoma to Texas, his victims are entire families annihilated to coincide with natural disasters, their bodies posed with chilling purpose amid the ruins.
Dupree and Amaia are following his trail to New Orleans. The clock is ticking. It’s the eve of what’s threatening to be the worst hurricane in the city’s history.
But a troubling call from Amaia’s aunt back home awakens in Amaia the ghosts from her childhood and sends her down a path as dark as that of the coming storm.
Review of The North Face of the Heart – Dolores Redondo
This novel is a prequel to the Baztan Trilogy. Despite this, it’s convenient to read it after the trilogy because it references things from Amaia’s past that have already been revealed in the other three novels and would detract from them.
In The North Face of the Heart, Amaia is doing an FBI course on criminal profiles for Europol policemen. One of the practices is to study a real case that’s happening at that time. Thus, Amaia is involved in the search for a serial killer who always acts when a natural catastrophe occurs. In this case, the catastrophe is Hurricane Katrina and the stage is New Orleans.
The plot as such, the search for a serial killer, isn’t very original. What’s original is the motivation and the type of murder that’s carried out. The story is entertaining and very well told. Perhaps, the whole part about Amaia’s past is a bit unnecessary, since, form my point of view, it’s too long and interrupts the flow of the main story.
The truth is that, as I read, I was constantly reminded of the television show Criminal Minds. It felt like an episode of that show. And this is not to say something negative about the book, because I really liked Criminal Minds. At least until season 9.
Overall, I liked “The North Face of the Heart ” very much, even though it felt a bit too long. Very well set, good characters (some very typical FBI), and very well assembled plot.