It has taken a while but we have finally got Mandie reading some of her Orenda Book purchases. Yay. And what a cracker she has chosen to review first – Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski. Before I have over to Mandie, let’s remind outselves what this book is all about.
About the Book
1997. Scarclaw Fell. The body of teenager Tom Jeffries is found at an outward bound centre. Verdict? Misadventure. But not everyone is convinced. And the truth of what happened in the beautiful but eerie fell is locked in the memories of the tight-knit group of friends who embarked on that fateful trip, and the flimsy testimony of those living nearby.
2017. Enter elusive investigative journalist Scott King, whose podcast examinations of complicated cases have rivalled the success of Serial, with his concealed identity making him a cult internet figure. In a series of six interviews, King attempts to work out how the dynamics of a group of idle teenagers conspired with the sinister legends surrounding the fell to result in Jeffries’ mysterious death. And who’s to blame …
As every interview unveils a new revelation, you’ll be forced to work out for yourself how Tom Jeffries died, and who is telling the truth. A chilling, unpredictable and startling thriller, Six Stories is also a classic murder mystery with a modern twist, and a devastating ending.
FOR FANS OF SERIAL
I will admit that Six Stories has been on my TBR pile for a very long time but everyone I have spoken to has had nothing but good things to say about it. So from this coupled with quite a few “you really must read it” from my sister I decided the best thing to do was to download the audio book so that I could listen to it whilst out walking.
Set as a series of podcasts this book automatically stands out as being different. Each chapter is an individual podcast looking at the events surrounding the death of Tom Jeffries at Scarclaw Fell from a different person’s perspective. You get to try to play detective to find out who did it and why.
By the end of the book I found that I had little sympathy for the victim. What comes across is the definite feeling that he was not a nice person. Not that excuses his murder or the burying of his body. Over the course of the podcasts you get to learn about the things the group got up to in the run up to that fateful night and one thing becomes evident – Tom Jeffries was a bit of a bully. I also felt that the group were not being entirely honest about what happened… but I was not sure if that was due to the time that had passed between the murder and when the podcasts were being recorded of if they were ashamed of that time and didn’t want the listener to know everything that happened. The only person you are sure is telling the whole truth is Henry Saint Clement-Ramsey who along with his friends found the body. To add to the mystery of the book you learn of old folk tales of beasts and apparitions that haunt the fell, preying on the unsuspecting people who wander at night.
I have to say that listening to the audio book really brought this story alive for me as unlike most audio books where you have just one narrator, this one had multiple narrators so you really got the feeling you were listening to the pod casts. In fact I had listened to the first five without realising how far I had got in the book. My only struggle with this was that for the final chapter I switched to the book itself. After being spoilt of having so many different people bringing the characters alive I then struggled to find a voice for the final podcast, but that’s just me. I absolutely loved this book and would heartily recommend it to anyone.
Six Stories is available now from the following retailers: