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The Invisible Guardian

The Baztan Trilogy, Book 1
Narrated by: Emma Gregory
Series: The Baztan Trilogy, Book 1
Length: 13 hrs and 12 mins
4 out of 5 stars (8 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A killer at large in a remote Basque Country valley, a detective to rival Sarah Lund, myth versus reality, masterful storytelling - the Spanish best seller that has taken Europe by storm.

The naked body of a teenage girl is found on the banks of the River Baztán. Less than 24 hours after this discovery, a link is made to the murder of another girl the month before. Is this the work of a ritualistic killer or of the Invisible Guardian, the Basajaun, a creature of Basque mythology?

Thirty-year-old Inspector Amaia Salazar heads an investigation which will take her back to Elizondo, the village in the heart of Basque country where she was born, and to which she had hoped never to return. A place of mists, rain, and forests. A place of unresolved conflicts, of a dark secret that scarred her childhood and which will come back to torment her.

Torn between the rational, procedural part of her job and local myths and superstitions, Amaia Salazar has to fight off the demons of her past in order to confront the reality of a serial killer at loose in a region steeped in the history of the Spanish Inquisition.

©2015 Dolores Redondo (P)2015 HarperCollins Publishers Ltd

Critic Reviews

"Has so many facets to it that it becomes utterly compelling" ( Publishing Perspectives)

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    5 out of 5 stars

buena traducción y buena interpretación

en general está bien, se hace raro pq hay conceptos vascos que no han traducido como "ama" o "aita" pero se entiende muy bien y se diferencia bien a los personajes

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for K. H. Mackenzie
  • K. H. Mackenzie
  • 05-12-18

Superb

Marvellous book as are the other two in the series and wonderful narration by Emma Gregory, as always.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 10-21-17

Totally absorbing

The vivid descriptions of the Baztan valley were captivatingly brought to life by the reader. Totally engrossing.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Marjorie Barreto-Neto
  • Marjorie Barreto-Neto
  • 06-16-18

Excellent

A murder mystery touched with sci-fi/horror. Really who could ask for anything more. And that it was written very well or at least the translation was superb!
The ending did leave one question however, I won’t post it here to avoid spoilers.
It may not be the most violent ridden action packed thriller you’ve ever encountered tho it does have it, but it is suspenseful enough and I, being retired law enforcement, was NOT able to glean who the killer was. An unusual occurrence for me but a welcomed one!
The best advice I can give is to get the book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for John
  • John
  • 05-15-19

Monotonous

Despite the good narration by Emma Gregory, this book was a poor listen . By chapter 16 I had to abandon the monotonous and over descriptive ramblings and detail , waiting sleepily for some action that ironically had kicked off reasonably well at the begining but descended into rambling rhetoric . Such a shame, that after a promising start, the action grinds to an indulgence of unecessary detail at the expense of a progressing story line . Maybe later in the book the story does pick up but I'm afraid my attention span had been stretched to boredom . My wife was sharing the experience with me during a car journey. Her comment was "I was losing the will to live " . We are both enthusiastic readers / listeners of a good tale but I'm afraid for us , this one failed to deliver .
UPDATE : At a later date I decided to persevere to the end . It didn't improve a great deal. If you like a book with masses of unnecessary detail that rambles on endlessly then sit back and enjoy . In my opinion a good and thorough edit would produce an acceptable read. In the final chapters it began to move again but with no great excitement or crescendo . The foregoing expanse of detail pretty much gave the ending away so no intruiging twist or surprise or captivate the reader . Well I finished it . Not a book I would recommend or author I would seek more of. However full marks to Emma Gregory for her perseverance of presentation. I have very much enjoyed listening to Emma with alternative authors .

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for George
  • George
  • 11-30-19

They are even vomiting in Spain.

A woman has got to do what a man has got to do . Which , is to scatter an amount of foul language and feminist melodrama that is completely implausible and is constructed of nothing but cliche built upon cliche with a fair amount of spirits and forest gollies. I was hoping that a Spanish novel wouldn’t have people vomiting and using foul language while forgetting to take vital action so that they can miraculously solve the case having padded it out to make a book twice as long as required .

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  • Ms AC Blundy-Mortimer
  • 04-22-18

Needs a major rewrite

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

A better narrator but also the book needs an edit. Okay, a serial killer and dead girls. Meh. Misogynistic and cliched but not the end of the world. Bit of Basque folklore and great stuff about her relationship with her mad mother. But Christ it needs chopping and reworking.

What could Dolores Redondo have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Cut most of the mysticism and made the character of James, the American boyfriend, at least vaguely like a real person. Absurdly fictional in all his sympathy and simpering. Also cut the Basque history and folklore lessons. If you can't make it part of the plot, cut it.

Would you be willing to try another one of Emma Gregory’s performances?

Never. Painful, breathless, mystic fairyland voice that makes me want to scream. No characterisation for different people (unless they are specified as having an accent, but even then she does this dreamy delivery that, especially for police staff, is beyond absurd).

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Yes, the actual book isn't bad. Needs work but it's okay. I like the mother stuff.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful