‘Looking Glass Sound’ by Catriona Ward | @ViperBooks

Author : Catriona Ward
Title : Looking Glass Sound
Pages : 350
Publisher : Viper Books UK
Publication date : April 20, 2023


In a windswept cottage overlooking the sea, Wilder Harlow begins the last book he will ever write. It is the story of his childhood companions and the killer that stalked their small New England town. Of the body they found, the horror of that discovery echoing down the decades. And of Sky, Wilder’s one-time friend, who stole his unfinished memoir and turned it into a lurid bestselling novel, Looking Glass Sound.

This book will be Wilder’s revenge on Sky, a man who betrayed his trust and died without ever telling him why. But as he writes, Wilder begins to find notes written in Sky’s signature green ink and events in his manuscript start to chime eerily with the present. Is Sky haunting him? Did Wilder have more to do with Sky’s death than he admits? And who is the woman drowning in the cove, whom no-one else can see?

No longer able to trust his own eyes, Wilder begins to wonder: is he writing the book, or is the book writing him?


Do you ever, upon finishing a book, wonder what the heck you just read? I’ve been staring at a blank page for ages, not knowing at all how to review ‘Looking Glass Sound‘ without giving anything away, which quite frankly feels like an impossible task.

Let’s start with the beginning. That part is easy enough. During a summer vacation, Wilder meets Harper, and Nat in a coastal village called Whistler’s Bay. At this point, ‘Looking Glass Sound‘ is very much a coming of age story. That meeting and subsequent events will change their lives forever, though.

Years later, Wilder returns to Whistler’s Bay to write his memoir. And this is pretty much where my brain shattered into a bajillion tiny pieces that I’m sure I’ll never be able to put back together again. There’s a fine line between fact and fiction, between what is real and what is not, and I admit I completely lost my way. Yet, somehow, despite the massive head hurting thing, I eagerly swiped the pages, desperately wanting to know what was what. Just when I thought maybe I finally had a handle on things, everything was turned upside down. 

This is one of those novels where you just have to go with the flow and try not to ask too many questions, hoping it will all make sense at some point. ‘Looking Glass Sound‘ is immensely dark and unsettling, it’s a gothic thriller after all. For the most part, it left me feeling bewildered, confused, and discombobulated. There was a lot of frowning, a lot of moments where I had the sense I was missing something, of not getting it. This story definitely requires your full attention and concentration, and even then I dare you to figure out what is happening underneath the surface before it’s revealed to you.

The foremost thought in my head while reading was “this book is weird”. But, in an odd sort of way, it’s the weirdness that pushed me on to keep reading and I enjoyed every single minute of it, because it’s strangely addictive. The characters are complex, to the point where I never really felt I knew any of them. ‘Looking Glass Sound‘ is a unique kind of mystery, very cleverly plotted and brilliantly written. For fans of gothic mysteries and the book-in-a-book thing. And those that don’t mind a wee headache afterwards.

Also, I’m forever boycotting green pens.

Amazon UK [out on April 20th]

My thanks to Viper for the advanced review copy, which I received via Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

  11 comments for “‘Looking Glass Sound’ by Catriona Ward | @ViperBooks

  1. April 18, 2023 at 10:30 am

    Great review Eva! She already gave me a headache with her previous novel so I can sort of imagine the sort of craziness that might happen in this novel!

    Liked by 1 person

    • April 19, 2023 at 8:41 am

      I didn’t read that one. I wasn’t allowed to because of certain things with dogs. But I did read Needless Street and struggled with that one quite badly, so I was rather surprised to find I very much enjoyed this one.


  2. April 18, 2023 at 2:37 pm

    I added the audiobook this week because of Kelly and now you’re getting me even more excited, Eva💜 Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

    • April 19, 2023 at 8:40 am

      I can’t wait to hear what you make of this! And I’m very intrigued to learn how the audiobook will work.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. April 24, 2023 at 11:22 am

    Wonderful review! Glad you enjoyed even if you’re not sure what you read! 😂

    Liked by 1 person

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