Hearts of Darkness: Serial Killers, the Behavioral Science Unit, and My Life as a Woman in the FBI (Paperback)

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Hearts of Darkness: Serial Killers, the Behavioral Science Unit, and My Life as a Woman in the FBI By Jana Monroe Cover Image
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For fans of Mindhunter and Criminal Minds, a chilling account of a woman facing down serial killers who was one of the first female profilers of the FBI Behavioral Sciences Unit and real-life model for The Silence of the Lambs’ Clarice Starling

“Jana Monroe is the single most influential woman to ever serve in the FBI.” —Joe Navarro, bestselling author of What Every BODY Is Saying

Jana Monroe was no ordinary cop: a cofounder of—and, at the time, the only female agent in—the world renowned FBI Behavioral Sciences Unit at Quantico, over the course of her career she consulted on more than 850 homicide cases. Through her work, she and her BSU colleagues crossed paths with Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, Edmund Kemper, Aileen Wuornos, and hundreds of other murderers; were also at the Branch Davidian Compound in Waco and traced the Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh’s tracks; and, in the wake of 9/11, headed up a new and expanded FBI headquarters in Las Vegas.

But to the people who know her best, Monroe is the BSU analyst upon whom the film character of Clarice (Jodie Foster) in The Silence of the Lambs was modeled; she even helped train Foster for the role. Over the course of an utterly astonishing and, until now, relatively anonymous career in shaping law enforcement and intelligence analysis, her legacy is without parallel yet not known to the public. Hearts of Darkness is Monroe’s incredible story and will have Monroe—now retired from the FBI— finally stepping out from the shadows to tell the range of gripping, sometimes gruesome, and always remarkable tales from the top moments of a life chasing the monsters among us. Within its pages, Monroe offers insight into the cases that have stayed with her most—from the infamous to lesser-known ones that readers will be introduced to for the first time in the book—offering new insight into the minds of some of the world’s most infamous and terrifying serial killers, as well as the psychological impact her work had on her day-to-day life. Hearts of Darkness will shock, enthrall, educate, and examine both extremes of human behavior—good and evil—as well as the daily norm found in the middle of this spectrum.

About the Author

Jana Monroe had a distinguished 22-year career in the Federal Bureau of Investigation, where she held a variety of field investigative and operational roles across the United States, including more than five years as a criminal profiler at Quantico, Virginia. She served as special agent in charge in Phoenix, Arizona, and Los Angeles, California, two of the largest FBI field offices in the United States, and was the first assistant director of the FBI Cyber Division. After retiring from the Bureau, Monroe entered the private sector. She lives in Arlington, Texas.

Praise For…

“The real-life model for Clarice Starling reflects on her career in the FBI . . . the author is an affable narrator, and her career accomplishments need no embellishment. Fans of true crime will find much to enjoy in this absorbing memoir of criminology.”
— Kirkus

“[A] fascinating debut . . . The stories Monroe shares of her 22 years in the FBI are thrilling, frightening, and occasionally amusing . . . in sharp, no-nonsense prose . . . Readers interested in criminology will devour this.”
— Publishers Weekly

“This is a fascinating memoir from a woman who reached the upper ranks of the FBI . . . Monroe is a natural, engaging storyteller whose touches of humility and wry humor temper the horrors she details. Readers will be astonished by the experiences she relates . . .Those with a strong interest in investigative methodology and FBI history will race through Monroe’s striking narrative.”

— Booklist

“A gripping and readable memoir that’s an essential read for audiences who want to understand the history of the FBI and the BSU. True-crime fans will enjoy Monroe’s tales about some of the most memorable cases she worked.”
— Library Journal

"Jana Monroe is the single most influential woman to ever serve in the FBI. . . . This book is about great, sometimes horrifying cases and the scary people who walk among us, but it’s also the memoir of a great woman, a great human, and a great friend who has helped to define what is possible in law enforcement but few will ever achieve."
— Joe Navarro, bestselling author of What Every BODY Is Saying

“Jana Monroe was an outstanding FBI Agent and leader who made important and long-term valuable contributions to the Bureau. As Director, I was very grateful for Jana’s and her family’s leadership while serving at FBI headquarters.”
— Louis J. Freeh, former director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and New York Times bestselling author of My FBI

“A shot of pure adrenaline for true crime fans, this vivid, fast-paced memoir charts the barrier-breaking career of its remarkable author: a real-life Clarice Starling whose work as the only female member of the FBI’s fabled Behavioral Science Unit demonstrated that a woman could be just a coolly competent and tough-minded as any man.”
— Harold Schechter, author of The Serial Killer Files

“Former FBI profiler Jana Monroe's fascinating book is in part the story of some of history's most troubling serial killers. But it’s also the story of a smart, capable woman building a career in the male-dominated field of law enforcement. The result is an addictively readable, insightful, and occasionally inspiring book.”
— Deborah Blum, bestselling author of The Poisoner's Handbook

“Getting a phone call from a serial killer is the kind of thing most people would find unsettling. For Jana Monroe, it was just another day at work.”
— New York Post
Product Details
ISBN: 9781419766121
ISBN-10: 1419766120
Publisher: Abrams Press
Publication Date: October 22nd, 2024
Pages: 320
Language: English