Audio: Face Off by Brenda Novak @Brenda_Novak @tplummer76 @MacmillanAudio

Posted September 18, 2018 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review / 12 Comments

Review copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.

Audio:  Face Off by Brenda Novak @Brenda_Novak @tplummer76 @MacmillanAudioFace Off by Brenda Novak
Narrator: Therese Plummer
Series: The Evelyn Talbot Chronicles #3
Published by MacMillan on August 28, 2018
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Length: 10 hours, 52 minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: Publisher
AmazonAudibleLibro.fmBarnes & Noble
One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Tortured and left for dead at 16, Evelyn Talbot turned her personal nightmare into her life’s work - studying the disturbing psychopathy of some of the world’s most vicious serial killers. Now a leading psychiatrist at Hanover House in a small Alaskan town, she tries to believe the past will never come back to haunt her - until a woman goes missing from a cabin nearby, and every clue points to the man who once brutalized her....

As her boyfriend, who is the area’s only police, begins to investigate - and finds not one but two bodies - Evelyn can’t forget that her would-be killer, Jasper Moore, was never caught. But there are no new faces in tiny Hilltop, no one who seems suspicious or potentially violent. In this twisted game of cat and mouse, Evelyn is certain of only one thing - Jasper must be hiding in plain sight. And if she can’t find him before he comes for her, she won’t be lucky enough to survive twice...

I’ve always really enjoyed the books of Brenda Novak. Her world building and characters are well written and inspired my emotions.  This Evelyn Talbot Chronicles series is a bit of a different genre. It’s more mystery and suspense than romance. Evelyn does develop a romantic relationship over the series.

Evelyn is a smart and driven character. Sometimes, her actions are just bizarre and it doesn’t seem like she is careful enough. In her position, I would learn self defense and use of weapons, and train regularly. There is also the issue of precautions and knowledge about the Alaskan weather and survival knowledge.  For being so intelligent, her decisions don’t always match.  She does have personal growth over the series.

The villains are totally without conscience and in that sense, a bit cliche, also extremely terrifying.  Even Amorak’s old girlfriend seems a bit of a nasty stereotype. There is plenty of suspense in Face Off.  There were multiple gut-wrenching twists with multiple shockers at a breakneck pace right up to the end.

From Goodreads, it looks like the series will continue and I’m curious to see what will happen. I recommend this series if you like mystery, suspense and thrillers, and can handle reading about violence towards women.


I have loved this narrator on another series and was thrilled to find I enjoyed her here. Sometimes I can’t listen to a narrator on more than one series. Therese Plummer gave the characters their own voices and it was a pleasure to listen to her. I listened mostly at my usual 1.25x speed but accidentally switched to 1.5x and it felt a bit fast but it worked for me as the story raced to the ending.  Her performance really added to the emotional quality of the book.

Listen to a clip here:

About Therese Plummer

Therese Plummer is an actor and voice over artist living and working in New York City. Favorite roles to date include TV: Rose Nerrick, The Good Wife, Andy in Law and Order SVU. Stage: Celebrity Row; New York Theatre Workshop, Under Tillage, The Irish Repertory Theatre. Off-off Broadway credits include The Vagina Monologues, Suzanne in Twilight of the Gold’s and Madeline in the Award Winning Samuel French Short play The Sweet Room. Comedy Credits include Improv at Upright Citizens Brigade and Stand-up at Caroline’s Comedy Club. Therese also performed her one woman show, Ribbons Undone, at the Here Arts Center.

Therese records audio books for, Recorded Books and Talking Books, Inc. As an adolescent counselor, Therese spent five years utilizing Drama therapy techniques in individual and group settings before moving to New York. She shares a passion of creating, helping and entertaining and feels incredibly lucky to do all three.

About Brenda Novak

Brenda sold her first book, and the rest is history. A New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of fifty novels, Brenda Novak has been nominated for a prestigious Rita Award three times and won The National Reader’s Choice Award, the Bookbuyer’s Best, the Bookseller’s Best, the Writer Touch Reader Award, the Golden Quill, the Hold Medallion and the Award of Excellence, among others.
Brenda and her husband, Ted, live in Sacramento and are the proud parents of five children—three girls and two boys. When she’s not spending time with her family or writing, Brenda is usually working on her annual fund-raiser for diabetes research—an online auction held on her Web site ( every May. To date, she has raised over $2 million for this cause.

Rating Breakdown
One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
Narration (Audio)
One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star
Overall: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • 2018 Audiobook Challenge
  • 2018 New Release Challenge

Posted September 18, 2018 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review / 12 Comments

12 responses to “Audio: Face Off by Brenda Novak

  1. I remember wanting to read the first one of these and for some reason I didn’t. I think I might really enjoy this series. Thank you for putting it back on my radar.

    • You should give her a try in either genre. I enjoy her writing. Sometimes the first book or prequel novellas are freebies too, or available at a good deal., Of course, there is always the library; I often start a new series or author there.

      Anne recently posted: Sunday Post – 16 September 2018
  2. I am glad you enjoyed this one, Anne! I had a lot of fun with the series and you are right in that the villains are without conscious and that old girlfriend was quite the piece of work. I listened to the first two books from the series and thought that Plummer did a great job with it.

    • I really like Therese Plummer. She also does the Rockton series for Kelley Armstrong and I love that too. I’ll be very curious to see where this series goes now since one story arc is somewhat settled.

      Anne recently posted: The Storm by Elizabeth Hunter