- Paperback: 458 pages
- Publisher: Blackstone Publishing; Unabridged edition (January 2, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1538450283
- ISBN-13: 978-1538450284
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 7.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Customer Reviews: 134 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #881,981 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Distress Signals Paperback – January 2, 2018
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''[A] fast-paced debut thriller...Hold on, you're in for a wild ride...The setting -- on a Mediterranean cruise ship -- will leave some vacationing listeners delightfully ill-at-ease.'' --BookPage
''[Howard] writes with complete command of language, plot, and the thriller genre.'' --Shelf Awareness
''Brimming with suspense and plot twists you'll never see coming.'' --Pop Culture Nerd
''This one is a standout and one I can highly recommend for fans of the genre.'' --Novel Gossip
''Distress Signals is a debut novel that packs a wallop of a punch...[a] complex plot...perfectly executed...page turning and twisty.'' --Its Book Talk
''Atmospheric, character driven, and cleverly plotted, Distress Signals had me hooked from the very start and captivated me until the final reveal. I loved the setting, which added a claustrophobic feel to the story, and threw Adam an extra curveball when his back was already up against the wall and his world as he knew it had gone up in flames. Adam's despair was tangible on every page, adding that emotional connection that kept me reading much too late into the night.'' --But Books Are Better
''I loved this book, it hooked from the beginning and didn't let go. It was so easy to read, I finished it within a day of starting it. The pace was really good as it kept the story constantly moving along. The characters felt real and so did the situation. It kept me guessing and had me coming up with different theories as to what was going on. It's not a dark thriller, unless of course you are a regular cruise goer with a vivid imagination. I thoroughly recommend it to thriller/mystery lovers and will definitely be looking out for the author's next book.'' --The Secret Library
''[A] solid first novel...Life and death aboard a cruise ship prove very mysterious indeed.'' --Publishers Weekly
''This novel has become one of my favorite psychological thrillers to date...Catherine Ryan Howard went outside the box and really brought a unique and interesting setting to Distress Signals...I absolutely loved, loved, LOVED this book, I cannot recommend it highly enough!'' --Rose Reviews
''An exhilarating debut thriller from a hugely talented author. Distress Signals is fast-paced, twisty, and an absolute joy to read.'' --Mark Edwards, bestselling author of The Magpies
''A gripping, smart, and fast-moving read...[that will] immerse you in the fascinating world of cruise ships and the mysterious, perfect crimes committed at sea. The compelling mystery at the heart of this debut novel is engrossing, and Catherine Howard's clever plotting makes this a terrific debut.'' --Christine Carbo, bestselling author of Mortal Fall
''Howard weaves an intricate web of suspense chapter by chapter...and before you know it, you're trapped inside.'' --Brian Freeman, author of Goodbye to the Dead
''A tense, tight, original page turner...Definitely a new, exciting and original author to watch.'' --Sunday Independent (Dublin)
''Distress Signals is a well-written, page-turning read, with a number of red herrings and some surprise plot twists...An engaging thriller written with authenticity and aplomb from a writer who knows her craft, and who clearly has a bright future.'' --Books Ireland
''I loved the voice...[An] engaging, unusual, and believable thriller.'' --Sinead Crowley, author of Can Anybody Help Me?
''Pacey, suspenseful, and intriguing…[A] top-class, page-turning read. Catherine Ryan Howard is an astonishing new voice in thriller writing.'' -- Liz Nugent, author of Unraveling Oliver
''A highly confident and accomplished debut novel, impeccably sustained, with not a false note.'' --Irish Times (Dublin)
''An excellent debut thriller which may give cruising executives some sleepless nights.'' --Irish Independent (Dublin)
About the Author
Catherine Ryan Howard was born in Cork, Ireland, in 1982. Her debut thriller, Distress Signals, is out now in the UK, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand, and was published in the US in early 2017. The Irish Times called Distress Signals ''a highly confident and accomplished debut novel, impeccably sustained, with not a false note.'' Catherine is also the author of the self-published titles Mousetrapped and Backpacked, both light-hearted memoirs of her travels abroad to the US and Central America. She is currently studying for a BA in English at Trinity College in Dublin and working on her second thriller.
134 customer reviews
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He discovers she told her boss she was sick and staying home. Now, she's vanished. Is she with her secret lover? Or a victim? She's 28, the police are not interested if she ran away, and it sure looks that way.
Okay, it was slow in places, too much hand wringing. I get it, he loves her, she's gone, can we move on?
But I guess all that loss was needed to force him into action to find her when no one else cared.
The last half kept me up until 4 am. Darn you. It was the best "who done it" I've read all year.
I wasn't sure how Rodin fit into the story since the two stories ran parallel. In the end it ties up loose ends.
Just when I thought I had it solved, blam, I'm blindsided.
Great story, and entirely plausible.
I usually don't enjoy stories from Europe as much, because of culture differences, but this felt right out of America. (If that's okay)
Story #1 centers around passengers who go missing and their loved ones who want answers but are stonewalled by the ships company & crew. Unsatisfied they embark on their own course of sleuthing. Story #2 is Romin’s story.
When the who done it’s and whys of story #1 begin to be exposed, I found it hard to follow, I was confused. To be clear, I reread that part to be sure I got the who part right. This story really fell flat for me. Fiction should at least be believable, yes?
I believe Romin’s story is the better of the two. He is a child who always seems to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or he makes decisions in which others do not agree. He is blamed for what he did not do. And he is bullied. As a young man he searches for his place in the world seeking love and acceptance.
I like the title. It is applicable to every character .
Story #1 left me flat. Story #2 gets my vote.
Adam and Sarah seem happy enough, and have been together for 10 years. Sarah announces that she is due attend a work conference in Barcelona, and Adam takes her to the airport. Her absence will provide him with plenty of time to work on the Hollywood screenplay which is looming, and through which his star will rise. But time is short and pressured. A perfect opportunity to get stuck in to the project.
A confirmatory text that Sarah has arrived, he thinks nothing of the fact that she is on radio silence thereafter….. at first, that is. But soon his disquiet grows, especially when he hears that her parents have heard nothing and that at work she has called in sick. The facts do not match the story she has told him, although to begin with he is not unduly worried. She is – as the Garda (police) in Cork tell him – a grown woman, and further, of all notified missing persons, it is only a tiny percentage that disappears forever. He, however, is not convinced.
Through Sarah’s best friend Rose, he learns of very unwelcome news, which not only upsets him but further unsettles him. As time passes, he starts to delve into the internet, and becomes increasingly alarmed by the connections he starts to make, sufficient for him to head for Barcelona and book himself onto the same cruise-ship, the Celebrate, on which Sarah seems to have been.
This is a good thriller, where the storyline is in part built on aspects of maritime law, which is fascinating. For example, any crime committed on a ship is investigated by the police force where the ship is registered, in this case Barbados; unless the victim involved is American, in which case the FBI comes hurtling in.
I certainly found this to be very readable and hard to put down. If I had one minor quibble it was that I felt the ending wasn’t as tightly plotted as the main body of the story, and meandered a little.
Will you risk reading this thriller, set on a cruise-ship, if you are about to embark on cruise holiday on the high seas??