REWIND by Catherine Ryan Howard | Book Review #RewindBook

Published by Corvus (22 August 2019)
336 pages
Source: Review copy received from publisher


From the bestselling, multiple prize-shortlisted novelist Catherine Ryan Howard comes an explosive story about a twisted voyeur and a terrible crime…

PLAY Andrew, the manager of Shanamore Holiday Cottages, watches his only guest via a hidden camera in her room. One night the unthinkable happens: a shadowy figure emerges onscreen, kills her and destroys the camera. But who is the murderer? How did they know about the camera? And how will Andrew live with himself?

PAUSE Natalie wishes she’d stayed at home as soon as she arrives in the wintry isolation of Shanamore. There’s something creepy about the manager. She wants to leave, but she can’t – not until she’s found what she’s looking for…

REWIND This is an explosive story about a murder caught on camera. You’ve already missed the start. To get the full picture you must rewind the tape and play it through to the end, no matter how shocking…


If you book into a holiday cottage or hotel, you expect to have privacy don’t you.  Well, not if you check into Shanamore Holiday Cottages.  The manager has a secret camera in the bedroom filming his guests however this time his twisted voyeurism went too far when the camera filmed a brutal murder taking place.

Set in Ireland, Rewind is told by a shifting timeline by way of chapters headed “Rewind, Pause, Play and Fast Forward”. Natalie O’Connor is a successful lifestyle influencer with thousands of followers on Instagram. However behind the smiles and the ‘life is so wonderful’ posts there is something not quite so great about her life and this is why she heads for Shanamore. 

Audrey is an wanabee journalist, currently working for an online newspaper with those ‘sidebar of shame’ clickbait articles.  It’s a soul destroying job and she yearns to be working upstairs where the proper journalists are on the crime desk. She’s about to be made homeless and unless she can keep her boss happy with some gossip for the newspaper, she will soon be jobless too.

The construction of the story between past and present is quite original with the video chapter settings, although it’s actually easy enough to follow without them and after a while I mostly ignored them as it’s pretty obvious where you are in the story from the narrator and content of the narrative. 

There are very some very sinister and just downright twisted characters here, all of which were superbly drawn and whilst initially I was never quite sure exactly what their involvement was, I did realise the who but wasn’t entirely sure of the why.  Audrey was a tenacious terrier in her pursuit of a story, she could sense that something wasn’t adding up and wouldn’t let go – even if her job was at risk when she went rogue and did her own investigations without her boss’s knowledge. 

Rewind is the author’s third book – all have been consistently great quality reads. A story of murder and obsession, it has a tense and well-paced plot but with a sinister undertone and touches on the downsides of social media fame.

This is another hugely enjoyable read from this extremely talented author.  My thanks to the publisher for sending a copy for review.


CATHERINE RYAN HOWARD was born in Cork, Ireland, in 1982. Her debut thriller, DISTRESS SIGNALS (2016), was an Irish Times and USA Today bestseller, and was shortlisted for both the Irish Crime Novel of the Year and the CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger. Her second thriller, THE LIAR’S GIRL (2018) was nominated for the Edgar Award for Best Novel. She currently lives in Dublin, where she divides her time between the desk and the sofa.

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Other reviews:

Distress Signals (2016)
The Liar’s Girl (PB) (2019)


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