Corvus has signed a novel by Irish author Catherine Ryan Howard.
Editorial director Sara O'Keeffe signed UK and Commonwealth rights, excluding Canada, in Distress Signals in a deal with Jane Gregory at Gregory & Company.
The book is described as The Girl on the Train meets Murder on the Orient Express. It sees a man investigating the disappearance of his girlfriend on a business trip, an investigation that leads him to a cruise ship where another girl disappeared in suspicious circumstances.
Howard has previously self-published two travel memoirs, and led workshops for Faber Academy, the Irish Writers' Centre and Publishing Ireland, as well as working freelance for Penguin Ireland. She is currently studying for BA in English Literature at Trinity College Dublin as a mature student.
O'Keeffe said: "From the very first page I knew it was something special. This is a brilliantly clever novel – replete with strong plotting, great characterisation and a nail-biting denouement; a truly satisfying thriller from an exceptional new talent."
Howard said: "This really is a lifelong dream come true for me and I have proof: on my desk, I keep a photo of an eight-year-old me on Christmas morning, tapping away on the typewriter Santa brought while a Barbie van sits to the side."
Distress Signals will be published in June 2016.