#Review - Hanover House by Brenda Novak @Brenda_Novak

Hanover House by Brenda Novak
Series: Hanover House Chronicles #0.5
Publication Date: September 1, 2015
Date Read:  October 24, 2015

Welcome to Hanover House….

Psychiatrist Evelyn Talbot has dedicated her life to solving the mysteries of the antisocial mind. Why do psychopaths act as they do? How do they come to be? Why don’t they feel any remorse for the suffering they cause? And are there better ways of spotting and stopping them?

After having been kidnapped, tortured and left for dead when she was just a teenager—by her high school boyfriend—she’s determined to understand how someone she trusted so much could turn on her. So she’s established a revolutionary new medical health center in the remote town of Hilltop, Alaska, where she studies the worst of the worst.

But not everyone in Hilltop is excited to have Hanover House and its many serial killers in the area. Alaskan State Trooper, Sergeant Amarok, is one of them. And yet he can’t help feeling bad about what Evelyn has been through. He’s even attracted to her. Which is partly why he worries.

He knows what could happen if only one little thing goes wrong...

This prequel did exactly what a prequel should do...which is to get me really excited to read this new series!  I seriously cannot think of another series prequel that does its job any better than this one does.  This is a relatively short piece but it really doesn't feel short because the story is so big.  I honestly can't believe how must story was packed into only 200 pages or so.  This is a very entertaining read.

Brenda Novak is known as a romance writer.  I have read and enjoyed her work before so when I saw her name on the cover of this book, I assumed that it would be a romance.  There is some romance in the story but it is so much more.  The romance in this story lives up to Brenda Novak's standards but the suspense in the story really steals the show in my opinion. 

Evelyn is a psychiatrist in the process of opening a facility in Hilltop, Alaska that will house some of the most dangerous criminals in the United States.  She was the victim of a psychopath when she was a teenager and has devoted her life to understanding the psychopathic mind.   As an expert in her field, she is finding the perfect group of criminals to study at her facility often putting herself at risk in the process.

I found that I really liked the characters in this story and have my finger crossed that they will remain the focus as the series progresses. Evelyn has been though more than most people can even imagine.  The fact that she is able to handle herself so well in difficult situations really speaks to the strength of her character.  She is a fighter and she is tough but she is also willing to take advice when it is the smart thing to do.  Amarok was nearly perfect.  He may be a little too perfect but I suspect that we may see a flaw or two at some point in the series.  He is good at his job, has perfect timing, and has to be the most patient man in Alaska or really anywhere.

The pacing of this story was perfect.  The romance and the suspense really balanced out quite nicely and I had a hard time setting the book aside.  I did enjoy the suspense aspect of the story a bit more than the romance.  I kept asking myself as I read this story Why didn't anyone tell me that this story was about a stalker?  The voice of the stalker in this story was fantastic. 

I would highly recommend this story to others.  I think that fans of romantic suspense will really enjoy this one.  I cannot wait to get my hands on the first full length book in the series when it is released next year.    

I received a copy of this book from Brenda Novak via NetGalley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

About the Author

It was a shocking experience that jump-started Brenda Novak’s bestselling author career.

“I caught my day-care provider drugging my children with cough syrup and Tylenol to get them to sleep while I was away,” Brenda says. “It was then that I decided that I needed to do something from home.”

However, writing was the last profession she expected to undertake. In fact, Brenda swears she didn’t have a creative bone in her body. In school, math and science were her best subjects, and when it came time to pick a major in college, she chose business.

Abandoning her academic scholarship to Brigham Young University at the age of 20 in order to get married and start a family, Brenda dabbled in commercial real estate, then became a loan officer.

“When I first got the idea to become a novelist, it took me five years to teach myself the craft and finish my first book,” Brenda admits. “I learned how to write by reading what others have written. The best advice for any would-be author: read, read, read….”

Brenda sold her first book, and the rest is history. Many of her novels have won or placed in contests such as the National Reader's Choice, the Bookseller's Best, the Write Touch, the Award of Excellence and the Beacon Award for Published Authors.

Brenda and her husband, Ted, live in Sacramento and are the proud parents of five children—three girls and two boys. She juggles her writing career with her children’s softball and soccer games, field trips, carpool runs and homework sessions.

When she’s not spending time with her family or writing, Brenda is usually working on her annual fundraiser for diabetes research—an on-line auction held at her website May 1st – May 31st. Her youngest son, Thad, has diabetes, and Brenda is determined to help him and others like him. She also enjoys traveling, watching sporting events and biking--she rides an amazing 20 miles every day!

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


  1. I really enjoyed this one as well. I am hoping the next in the series follows the same characters as well because I really liked them and loved getting to see the POV of the bad guy. Great review!

    1. Thanks, Grace! I absolutely loved every scene that let us in the bad guy's head. I just thought it was very well done. I can't wait to read this series. I think that there are so many things that can happen at Hanover House that will be very exciting.


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