Author: Matt Wesolowski
Published: March 30, 2017 by Orenda Books
Genre: Crime Fiction
Hardcover: 225 pages
My Rating: 3 stars
Plot Synopsis: 1997. Scarclaw Fell. The body of teenager Tom Jeffries is found at an outward bound center. Verdict? Misadventure. But not everyone is convinced.
2017. Enter elusive investigative journalist Scott King, whose podcast examinations of complicated cases have rivaled 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.
Six Stories is structured like a true crime podcast. It is being compared to the podcast Serial, of which I’m a big fan. Investigative journalist Scott King interviews 6 people who were there at the camp grounds on the night Tom Jeffries goes missing. Through these six stories, we learn of the dynamics of the group of teenagers. In a fairly short amount of pages (225 to be exact), the author manages to create main characters who are completely flushed out and well developed, each with a unique voice.
The novel alternates between the perspective of the man who discovered the body of Tom Jeffries twenty years ago, to the six interviews. This novel is not a police procedural, but more of an in depth look at the dynamics of this group of teenagers in 1997, where everyone has regrets and secrets they would rather stay hidden. Throw in a bit of a ghost story about the legend of the camp ground site, and you have an atmospheric, and truly original story. And did I mention, it has a killer twist/surprise that you won’t see coming at the end? Yes, it does! This book will appeal to true crime enthusiasts and listeners of podcasts such as Serial.
Little bits of the story are revealed bit by bit as we move through the six stories, but the only drawback I see is that because it’s the same story being told from six different perspectives, some of it felt a little repetitive to me. If you like this one though, you don’t have to wait for Matt Wesolowsk’s next book because it just came out last month. It’s called Hydra and it’s getting even better reviews than Six Stories.