Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski

I stumbled across Six Stories on Twitter where the comments were nothing but good. Discovering Wesolowski was a local author I was intrigued and thought I would give it a go.

Set in the atmospheric Scarclaw Fell a fictional place in the north east of England, the book investigates the death of a teenager some 20 years previous via a set of 6 podcasts (interviews) conducted by the elusive Scott King. Was Tom Jeffries death misadventure or was it something else? The teenagers present at the time of Tom’s disappearance together with other key characters reveal the truth piece by piece until the one hell of a twist ending arrives, that kept me guessing right to the last chapter.

It did take me a bit of time to settle into the book and to get to grips with the style as it flitted between characters and time frames but once I did, I found it easy to read.

It was an original read for me which I always appreciate (I’m not familiar with Serial, the podcast upon which the idea for the book was based) and I really liked that Tom was not a nice person. The fact that you weren’t sure whether it was a murder, a tragic accident or whether there were even supernatural natural elements involved also kept things interesting.

A special mention has to go to Wesolowski for the brilliant setting he created in Scarclaw Fell and the way he captured how painful and complicated the life of a teenager can be, full of self doubt, secrets and an underlying need to just be accepted. No-one was perfect, and I liked Wesolowski more because of this. It did at times however feel like all the group of teenagers did was smoke and drink.

I think Six Stories is the perfect step up for young adults into the adult fiction genre but don’t let that put you off if you are well out of your teens. A signed copy of Wesolowski’s next book Hydra which is a sequel to Six Stories is lurking on my shelf to be read.

If you liked this, give Stephen Booth a try. From Burnley his crime books set in the Peak District have a similar deep rooted setting that only a local author can bring.

The link to the book at the top of the post takes you to The Book Corner’s website, a little independent bookshop in Saltburn, North Yorkshire.