Well what can I say... First Brenda Novak treats us to “Hanover House” which turns out to be the first book in her new series. “Hanover House”, which was billed as a novella, was a remarkable page turner that alternatively entertained and scared the heck out of me. Now we have moved onto “HER DARKEST NIGHTMARE” which believe or not makes the introduction seem tame.
It begs the question why would a woman devote her life delving into the psyche of serial killers. These killers have no conscience, feel no remorse – it makes me wonder what value would be derived from interviewing and studying them. The woman who leads the team dissecting the thoughts of these criminals is none other than Evelyn Talbot – herself a teenage victim of a sick sadistic boyfriend. “HER DARKEST NIGHTMARE” by Brenda Novak takes you on a crazy scary voyage into these minds.
Hanover House holds the worst of the worst and is located in Alaska. The sheriff had loudly voiced his objection to building it in his small very secluded town and now it seems he has a solid reason for his position. Sergeant Benjamin Murphy – known as Amarok which means wolf – has been developing feelings for Eve and these feelings are definitely at odds with his hatred for the peril Hanover House poses for his home town and of course Eve herself. Each time Eve faces one of these sadistic murderers who delight in the pain and torture they inflict on their victims prior to killing them she can’t help but recall her own experience.
Amarok has been earning Eve’s trust and affection by giving her time and space. Eve considers herself damaged goods. But Amarok sees a bright, caring and albeit awkward woman. A woman who skipped her teenage years of developing relationships too busy trying to cope with the aftermath of her own torture and near death experience. This has made Eve stronger in many ways – but truly vulnerable in others.
Amarok really doesn’t want to be proven correct in his misgivings about Hanover House but now there’s a situation that points to possible involvement of one of Eve’s killers. Her subjects are the most dangerous that haunt law enforcement and frighten communities. These killers are intelligent and resourceful but they all share a common trait – soulless eyes. That’s what Eve sees when they enter her domain. On the outside they appear normal. That’s what makes her work so important. Eve sees herself as the first line of defense again releasing these monsters into the public. Hanover House is where she will hopefully gain insight to help ferret out the madmen before they do harm.
“HER DARKEST NIGHTMARE” has introduced us to some characters that will become familiar to us and not necessarily in a good way. Brenda Novak continues her assault on our senses with these demonic folk that make us visibly cringe. It’s a talent that’s for sure. As a longtime fan of Brenda Novak and especially her crime series Hanover House is fated to be one of the best. Sure you can start anywhere. But to get the most out of this series start with Hanover House and then graduate to “HER DARKEST NIGHTMARE”. Oh and make sure to deadbolt the doors and keep the lights on.
Her Darkest Nightmare, first in an electrifying new series from New York Times bestselling author Brenda Novak
THE HUNT FOR A SERIAL KILLER
Evelyn Talbot knows that a psychopath can look perfectly normal. She was only sixteen when her own boyfriend Jasper imprisoned and tortured her?and left her for dead. Now an eminent psychiatrist who specializes in the criminal mind, Evelyn is the force behind Hanover House, a maximum-security facility located in a small Alaskan town. Her job puts her at odds with Sergeant Amarok, who is convinced that Hanover is a threat to his community…even as his attraction to beautiful Evelyn threatens to tear his world apart.
BEGINS WITH AN ESCAPE FROM HER PAST
Then, just as the bitter Alaskan winter cuts both town and prison off from the outside world, the mutilated body of a local woman turns up. For Amarok, this is the final proof he needs: Hanover has to go. Evelyn, though, has reason to fear that the crime is a personal message to her?the first sign that the killer who haunts her dreams has found her again. . .and that the life she has so carefully rebuilt will never be the same…