I’m so pleased to welcome you to my stop on the Six Stories blog tour today! I’m sharing today with Damp Pebbles so please visit there as well.
What’s it about?
The novel is constructed as a series of podcasts, in which an investigative journalist describes the circumstances around the death of a teenaged boy in an outward-bound centre, interviewing witnesses, suspects and people close to the incident. Their six accounts form the six stories of the title, creating a “chilling and compelling, page-turning thriller that also delves deep into notions of truth, perception and loyalty”.
About the author
Matt Wesolowski is an author from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in the UK. He is an English tutor and leads Cuckoo Young Writers creative writing workshops for young people in association with New Writing North. Matt started his writing career in horror and his short horror fiction has been published in Ethereal Tales magazine, Midnight Movie Creature Feature anthology, 22 More Quick Shivers anthology and many more. His debut novella The Black Land, a horror set on the Northumberland coast, was published in 2013 and a new novella set in the forests of Sweden will be available shortly. Matt was a winner of the Pitch Perfect competition at Bloody Scotland Crime Writing Festival in 2015. He is currently working on his second crime novel Ashes, which involves black metal and Icelandic sorcery
This novel is bloody brilliant. You’ll realize just how brilliant it is after you’ve finished it. It will stay with you and you’ll feel compelled to reflect, to go over the story again, to think it through after all is revealed. This novel has the power to change the way you look at things like no other book has done before. It hits the nail right on the head this one!
I’ve listened to the podcast Serial in the past because if you’re into crime that is something just too good to be missed. This novel reads just like that and then some more ;-). It’s basically a recounting of a case from 20 years ago when a boy went missing and was found dead a year later. Tom Jeffries’ death was named to be ‘accidental’ but was that really so? Scott King, the presenter, interviews six people who were present the night he vanished and interspersed are Scott King’s own observations and thoughts. The novel also lets us follow Harry, the boy who found Tom Jeffries 20 years ago and returns to the scene one last time.
The first podcast was an interview with Derek Bickers, he was one of the two adults supervising the kids when they were at the Scarclaw Fell Woodlands Centre in 1995. They were all part of The Rangers, just a group of people who organised things together. They were all open-minded and welcoming according to Derek Bickers. But were they really? However way you turn it, the moment Tom Jeffries joined, the dynamics of their little group changed. How much so will only come to full expression after everyone’s been interviewed.
The format of this book is very original and even though the story was basically about the same events happening, I learned something new with each person interviewed, I got new insights and the further I got into the novel, the clearer my image became of their dynamics. We get to know Tom Jeffries really good! I saw things in another perspective myself by delving further into the story and had to adjust my opinion slightly after each new person interviewed, and then I hadn’t even heard it all. There’s a haunting, atmospheric subplot involving the sighting of an evil creature roaming the woods. It’s a legend going back for generations but some of the present characters mention a sighting too and it makes this read all the more scary. Also, there is a BIG twist towards the end which was SO clever and so amazing! Just waw.
Six Stories is what I call an ‘intelligent’ novel, one where there’s an intricate plot – which you don’t even realise for most of the novel – a novel that makes you use those grey brain cells. You’ll soon come to understand that everybody had a motive and when you’ve finished it and turned that last and final page, makes you sigh with satisfaction.
This is a story about bullying, manipulative behaviour, jealousy and plenty of additional intrigue that make this an enthralling and addictive novel. I can’t recommend this one highly enough !
I received a free copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.
Check out the other blog stops too.. coming up first: Have Books Will Read and Ronnie Turner!