Hydra by Matt Wesolowski


Hydra by Matt Wesolowski

Matt Wesolowski’s debut novel Six Stories was just incredible a real thrilling crime novel based around six podcast interviews. It was in the end in my selection of one of my best books of 2017. Matt Wesolowski returns with his follow up crime novel Hydra.


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One very cold night in November 2014, 21-year-old Arla Macleod murdered her mother, younger sister and also her stepfather. All bludgeoned to death. The question is why, what provoked Arla to murder her own family?

What follows is nothing short of extraordinary piece of writing, as Arla now incarcerated in an institution. She now is shut up and drugged up. But she will not speak to anyone about what happened that night. That is with the exception on one person and that is Scott King. Readers of Six Stories will instantly know who Scott King is. King runs a series of Six Podcasts and interviews six people closely connected to the crime.

Here in Hydra Scott King follows creates the next set of six podcasts around interviews as he delves deep into the case. What was the motive for the crime? Through the six podcasts Scot tries to get under the skin of the complex and chilling case and find out what the motive for the horrific crime. Now as we move from one story to another as he interview witnesses something begins to emerge and a story starts to takes shape. Arla never disputes the murders, but what drove her to wipe out her family that cold November night?

Scott manages to interview Arla herself, each podcast was like listening to a thriller in itself I was totally gripped with suspense and wondering what each of the guests. We knew the murderer that was never in question but the five other guests held me in complete suspense.

The real beauty of Hydra is the way that Matt Wesolowski has created his own unique genre around crime solving that involves using podcasts. Scott King is an intriguing chap. Not much is known about him and this just adds to the mystery of these stories. One aspect of Hydra I will not get out of my mind is that of the “black eyed kids” this was straight out of a black and white horror film. It was beyond creepy. I went cold when they were first mentioned. I am a massive fan of Matt Wesolowski and his incredible writing skill that has you on the edge of your seat. It is just innovative and new. If you read Six Stories, then Hydra should be on your to be read pile. A real contender for one of the books for 2018. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

320 Pages

My thanks to Karen Sullivan for the review copy of Hydra by Matt Wesolowski.

Hydra by Matt Wesolowski is published by and is published on 15th January 2018 and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and all good bookshops


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Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski



Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski

The idea of setting a thriller around a series of six podcasts is a unique one and in the debut novel Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski I was not sure at first how this was going work, but have no fear I devoured this gripping psychological thriller on my journey to London for the recent book fair were I was going to meet the publisher of this gripping psychological thriller Karen Sullivan of Orenda Books. And it really is a book I recommend.


Podcasts have really taken off over recent years, there are podcasts that cover all manner of things, just search the internet and it is all there. I am a fan of listening to podcasts on my journeys. But here in Six Stories is a series of six podcasts based around a murder mystery. The host of the Podcast series Scott King is an ex journalist and through his chosen medium he sets out to investigate mysteries that have not been solved. It is a clever way of getting an audience and then the listeners could end up being the judge and the jury in some cases. Through his podcasts Scott King interviews key people involved with the mysteries thereby breathing new life into a case that may have been long since closed or forgotten about. Now he has turned his attention to attention to the death of the teenager Tom Jefferies who died on Scarclaw Fell in 1997. Now twenty years on King is attempting to uncover just how Tom Jefferies died and just what why was he on Scarclaw Fell when he met his death.

Through his six interviews Scott King will talk to those with close links to the teenager and each of them has a story to tell of that time and of the group of teenagers that Jefferies was involved with. Each character has a story and you the reader are listening to the podcast through the pages of this dark twisting story and through the podcasts more and more details become available to the reader/listener. Scarclaw Fell is depicted as a dark and desolate place and just how Matt Wesolowski through his words describe this place and foreboding, just why would Tom Jefferies would want to be there is part of the story.


By talking with those linked to Jefferies Scott King slowly uncovers just what was going on and as the plot deepens and thickens you become deeply involved. This is a clever trick by the author as he wants you to come to your own conclusion as if you are listening to the very podcasts themselves. It really works, I found this very addictive. Slowly the jigsaw of this case is put together through the interviews and more of the mystery is uncovered. This is a classic murder mystery and reads like one.

The one great aspect of this is that it in my view was completely unpredictable and I was never sure what was coming in the next podcast. I will not give any clues here as to how this ends but I found this to be a dark and at times very unsettling and sinister for different reasons but one thriller I am so glad I have read and Matt Wesolowski is a writer I am looking forward to hearing more of. Yet again Orenda Book has pulled off another great scoop of a novel and one that you need to read and be warned. Once started you will not put this book down. It is impossible.

Thank you to Karen Sullivan for the advanced review copy.

Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski is published by Orenda Books and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and all good bookshops.