56 Days by Catherine Ryan Howard

Goodreads Synopsis

No one knew they’d moved in together. Now one of them is dead. Could this be the perfect murder?

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

When lockdown threatens to keep them apart, Oliver suggests that Ciara move in with him. She sees a unique opportunity for a new relationship to flourish without the pressure of scrutiny of family and friends. He sees it as an opportunity to hide who – and what – he really is.

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

Will they be able to determine what really happened, or has lockdown provided someone with the opportunity to commit the perfect crime?


maroon starmaroon starmaroon star

It is a 3.5 but I am reluctant to make it a 4.


56 DaysThis book was an impulse buy for me when I was out and about randomly browsing the titles to take my mind off of a lot of scenarios swirling through my head. The synopsis sounded intriguing and I bought it. After all, I had yet to read a book where COVID-19 had played any part in a story. The only one I knew was my own.

I found the story gripping to begin with even though there was nothing in the first half of the story to tell me the how and why of what will happen because we already know someone dies but there are no clues as to the whys or the hows. Being a romance fanatic, I enjoyed how the story proceeded between the main leads of the story.

The first twist, which I believe the author wrote in a way to take the reader’s mind elsewhere from what was actually going to happen, gave a little perspective to what the characters were doing and what their motivation had been in performing those actions.

The character development was okayish because we hardly see the characters growing but that can very well be chalked up to the fact that the entire story is set in approximately 2 months only. But, still, when someone new enters your life, they are bound to make an impact in you and you change even if it is a tiny bit. I did not like this bit.

The following twists made me think there was going to be an explosive climax or something to wrap everything up but that was not the case. At least not for me. Everything fell flat after that big a build up. As if all that has been was for naught.

If someone would have asked me how I will rate the book where I was near the 75% mark, I’d have called it a 4 star book but…

Read the book to see how to incorporate a global pandemic into a story and how to use it as a plot device.


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