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#SixStoriesSaturday: Hydra by Matt Wesolowski @ConcreteKraken @OrendaBooks #Hydra #Orentober #SaturdaySpotlight #Review

That’s right folks it’s Saturday again, one of my favourite days of the week, especially because it means another installment of Six Stories Saturday! Last week I shared my review of Six Stories, this week has an audiobook review mixed in too!

Hydra was published by Orenda Books in January 2018 and is available in all formats. You can purchase a paperback copy from independent bookseller Bert’s Books here, or directly from the Orenda Books ebookstore here! I didn’t exactly read Hydra, I listened via Audible and not being a constant audiobook user, I’d highly recommend it if it’s your thing!

A family massacre. A deluded murderess. Five witnesses. Six stories. Which one is true? One cold November night in 2014, in a small town in the north west of England, 21-year-old Arla Macleod bludgeoned her mother, father and younger sister to death with a hammer, in an unprovoked attack known as the Macleod Massacre. Now incarcerated at a medium-security mental-health institution, Arla will speak to no one but Scott King, an investigative journalist, whose Six Stories podcasts have become an internet sensation. As King unpicks the stories, he finds himself thrust into a world of deadly forbidden ‘games’, online trolls, and the mysterious black-eyed kids, whose presence seems to extend far beyond the delusions of a murderess… Dark, chilling and gripping, Hydra is both a classic murder mystery and an up-to-the-minute, startling thriller, that shines light in places you may never, ever want to see again.

Firstly I need to say (again) that I listened to this book using my September Audible credit, I have to be in the mood for an audio book and it needs to grip me or i’m off with the fairies before you can stay Scott King. The narrators that take us through the view points of those around the Macleod Murders include Tim Bruce, Jane Slavin, Kris Dyer, Jonathan Keeble, Joan Walker, Julius Howe and Rebecca Rainsford. My verdict? Along with the concept and dialogue that is obviously Matt’s, they drew you into the story further – each character was given a further depth with the use of tone and accents etc. Not only, did I get the best of the written words, descriptive and settings BUT it also gives the listener a further level of visualisation. My recommendation? Listen to it! Listen to all the Six Stories books in audio format – they are written in podcast format after all!

So, lets talk about the Hydra as a book! Arla brutally murders her family, no one knows why but as Scott King, the presenter of the Six Stories podcast, delves in to the case – as always providing six alternative view points, in this case of those who have somewhat come into contact with Arla – Scott’s aim is to investigate any motives that may have caused Arla to lash out murderously at her family. While I was immersed in the storyline, I felt that like many great thriller authors, Matt has taken threads from non – fictional events to bind together a strong rope of fear, emotion and constant psychological punches. A case that I was reminded of when the causes of violent behaviour was looked into was The Columbine Shootings; the reeling that rippled where everything ‘different’ was blamed for something that people just couldn’t understand. What I enjoy about the distinctive format in which Matt writes, is that it takes the reader on a darkly evocative journey by dropping deliciously distorted details through each ‘episode’.

I was glued to my headphones as the issues surrounding the tragic deaths of the McLeod family, jaw very much on the floor and entranced by the multiplicity of view points. The sinister themes that flows through the whole book, just below the surface but always in sight are really well researched and brought to life in a way that’s both brilliant and absolutely believable. Matt has planned the stages of the book perfectly, but more importantly he’s provided a deep societal foundation to a traumatic storyline. I noted the audio with “dark as f**k” I stand by that note! I was a reading victim, I was drawn into a plot so taut and captivating. As a fan of true crime podcasts I feel that the way Matt writes in that format is exceptionally intoxicating, sprinkled with a chilling dash of human evil and perfectly atmospheric.

As each episode develops and moves on, the tension and pace builds to a more jaw dropping level. I’d recommend every one of Matt’s Six Stories but this one has to be my favourite, and one that I think has hit me the hardest. Bravo Matt! That’s all from me this #WesoloskiWednesday but I am positive that there will be a many #Orentober posts for you to gorge on! Thanks for reading my first ever audiobook review, if you’ve read / listened to Hydra let me know what you thought. Did you love it as much as I did? I hope you come join me next week as I share my thoughts on Changeling.

Happy Reading.

2 thoughts on “#SixStoriesSaturday: Hydra by Matt Wesolowski @ConcreteKraken @OrendaBooks #Hydra #Orentober #SaturdaySpotlight #Review

  1. Great first audiobook review 🙂 I love an audiobook!


  2. Fantastic review! I’m starting Hydra either tonight or tomorrow and you’ve made me even more excited about it! xx


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