How it started

The Back Room was born during the Covid-19 pandemic. As in-person event shut down across the country, online author events began popping up.

But as Hank and Karen began attending and participating in these events, they found they were missing one important element: interaction with an audience.

So they conceived of their own event where authors weren’t presenting a talk to a silent audience but were actually interacting with their readers.

On September 27, 2020 the first Back Room event was launched and immediately both authors and readers loved it!

Since that time, the unique format of The Back Room has continued to draw a faithful following and provide connections between authors and their fans!

“I just have to give a shout out to Hank Phillippi Ryan and Karen Dionne. They have really hit on something very special with this Back Room idea. This concept is brilliant and so much fun. I can’t think of an event that was this much fun since the pandemic began . . . give this concept a try; I think you will be pleasantly surprised. It’s so well-run and just a total blast.”

– Kristopher Zgorski, Bolo Books

Meet Your hosts | Karen Dionne

Karen Dionne is the USA Today and #1 internationally bestselling author of two psychological suspense novels set in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula wilderness, The Marsh King’s Daughter and The Wicked Sister, both published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons in the US and in dozens of other languages.

Praised by The New York Times Book Review as “subtle, brilliant, and mature,” The Marsh King’s Daughter is now a major motion picture starring Daisy Ridley and Ben Mendelsohn.

Wicked Sister

Karen’s newest novel is The Wicked Sister. “Dionne paints a haunting portrait of a family hurtling toward the tragic destiny they can foresee but are powerless to stop.”–Publishers Weekly (starred review; best book of 2020)

Meet Your hosts | Hank Phillippi Ryan

Hank Phillippi Ryan is the USA Today bestselling author of 15 psychological thrillers, winning the genre’s most prestigious awards: five Agathas, five Anthonys, and the coveted Mary Higgins Clark Award. She’s also investigative reporter for Boston’s WHDH-TV, winning 37 EMMYs for her groundbreaking journalism. National book reviewers call her “a superb and gifted storyteller.”

Hank is the co-host of The Back Room and First Chapter Fun, as well as  host of her CRIME TIME interview show on A Mighty Blaze. She lives with her husband, a criminal defense and civil rights attorney, in Boston.

One Wrong Word final jacket
Her newest is the page-turning standalone ONE WRONG WORD – taut and tense psychological drama exploring gossip, rumor, greed and revenge. Two smart women face off in a high-stakes psychological cat and mouse game to prove their truth about a devastating betrayal​—but which woman is the cat, and which woman is the mouse? Publishers Weekly says “Ryan is a master of suspense!”