#BookReview: 56 DAYS by Catherine Ryan Howard @cathryanhoward @CorvusBooks

Publication: 19th August 2021 – Corvus

No one even knew they were together. Now one of them is dead.

Ciara and Oliver meet in a supermarket queue in Dublin and start dating the same week COVID-19 reaches Irish shores.

When lockdown threatens to keep them apart, Oliver suggests they move in together. Ciara sees a unique opportunity for a relationship to flourish without the scrutiny of family and friends. Oliver sees a chance to hide who – and what – he really is.

Detectives arrive at Oliver’s apartment to discover a decomposing body inside.

Can they determine what really happened, or has lockdown created an opportunity for someone to commit the perfect crime?



In March 2020 the entire world went into lockdown. Shops were closed, streets were empty, and people stayed safe in their own houses. In Dublin, Ciara and Oliver had met two weeks earlier and, not wanting to spend the lockdown separated, Ciara moves into Oliver’s apartment so they can be together. It sounds like the beginning of a beautiful love story, right?! Instead, it is a story of secrets, revenge, and murder.

In the present day, a fire alarm goes off in a residential building. When officers arrive on the scene, they find a body decomposing in one of the apartments, so DI Leah Riordan and DS Karl Connolly try to figure out if it was an accident or if it was murder. Fifty-six days earlier, Ciara and Oliver met in a supermarket queue, bonding over their passion for space. However, was their encounter a mere coincidence?

WOW…what a rollercoaster of a read!!! The author cleverly created a compelling and gripping story that alternates between different timelines and told from different perspectives, full of twists and surprises, and a suspense palpable from the first to the last page.

The tension is kept high by the intriguing and well-developed characters created by the author. Ciara and Oliver are multi-layered characters full of secrets whose past is slowly unraveled keeping me deeply engrossed in the story. On the other hand, Detectives Leah and Karl – or Lee and Karly – are entertaining characters. I enjoyed their easy and witty banter that gave a bit of levity to the story.

I became a fan Catherine Ryan Howard after reading The Nothing Man, but 56 Days makes her my must-read author. Highly recommended!

A huge thank you to Corvus and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the novel.

Catherine Ryan Howard is the bestselling author of The Nothing Man, which shot straight to the top of the Irish bestseller charts on publication and was a Kindle No. 1 bestseller in the UK. Her work has been shortlisted for the CWA/John Creasey New Blood Dagger, the Mystery Writers of America Edgar Award for Best Novel, and for the Irish Crime Novel of the Year several times. Her third novel, Rewind, is currently being developed for television. She lives in Dublin.

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