April Smith’s debut novel, published to critical acclaim and translated into a dozen languages, introduces Ana Grey as a young, ambitious FBI agent on the robbery squad of the Los Angeles field office, who is put on a high-profile case involving the fading but still-beloved movie star, Jayne Mason, a well-known doctor, and an allegedly illegal supply of drugs passing between them.
Ana’s personal and professional life collide when she learns the doctor had employed a distant cousin of hers – a woman Ana never knew, who has recently been brutally murdered. And it doesn’t take long for her to understand that in the eyes of her bosses, “Jayne Mason is not a case, Jayne Mason is a political situation, waiting to explode.”
As pressure builds to resolve the situation, Ana and her partner, Mike Donnato (the “most married” man she thought she knew) are drawn closer together. And as Ana fights to prevent the case from making its way deep into her psyche, her world, her life – into the long-hidden recesses of her family’s mysterious past and into her conflicted present — North of Montana becomes a riveting exploration of power and identity in the explosive culture of Los Angeles.
"In a stunningly assured debut, Smith has produced a crime thriller distinguished by an unflagging pace, authoritative use of detail and an appealing heroine. In vigorous, literate prose, Smith delivers characters of depth dimension who inhabit the wildly diverse worlds of Southern California, each rendered with a cinematic eye."Publishers Weekly, starred and boxed review