Are you ready for round 2???
Author: Matt Wesolowski
Publisher: Orenda Books
Date of publication: Paperback 24 January 2019
Format: physical proof
Number of pages: 271
A missing child
A family in denial
Which one is true?
On Christmas Eve in 1988, seven-year-old Alfie Marsden vanished in the dark Wentshire Forest Pass, when his father, Sorrel, stopped the car to investigate a mysterious knocking sound. No trace of the child, nor his remains, have ever been found. Alfie Marsden was declared officially dead in 1995.
Elusive online journalist, Scott King, whose ‘Six Stories’ podcasts have become an internet sensation, investigates the disappearance, interviewing six witnesses, including Sorrel and his ex-partner, to try to find out what really happened that fateful night. Journeying through the trees of the Wentshire Forest – a place synonymous with strange sightings, and tales of hidden folk who dwell there, he talks to a company that tried and failed to build a development in the forest, and a psychic who claims to know what happened to the little boy…
Intensely dark, deeply chilling and searingly thought provoking, Changeling is an up-to-the-minute, startling thriller, taking you to places you will never, ever forget.
In italics: ME!
In regular: YOU!
I have a big problem.
I am at a loss for words to review Changeling.
Well, it is easy. Matt Wesolowski’s work is art, and I am not sure I can do it justice.
But you’ve reviewed his two previous books in the series!
I know. And each book is as powerful and chilling as the previous one. That’s the problem.
Let’s start at the beginning. What did you think of writing?
I am addicted to Scott King’s podcasts. I love the format, I love how it makes me feel I’m climbing a ladder, sweating and swearing to get the next episode as tension goes up. I love digging into stories that don’t seem to have an end. I love how the author’s concise prose cuts into people’s lives to free the truth. I marvel at how the reader is given hard facts before mixing them with context, people, and emotions, to be able to form their own opinion. There’s a hidden path Matt Wesolowski uses to take you where he wants, but you choose to walk it on your own free will. The appeal of the mystery is always strong. Yes, true crime is popular these days, and so are podcasts, but it takes a genius mind to combine so many elements and create something unique, fascinating, and compelling without ever falling into a pattern.
So, Changeling didn’t feel like a repeat of the previous books?
Nope! Not one bit! If the format is the same, and the background story has its importance, the core of the book is always original. This time, we enter a forest. A real one. And one made of secrets. Could they be linked? That’s for you to discover, but let me tell you, few books manage to sweep you away the way Changeling does. There are two stories in this book. No, in fact, there are many. Folk tales which make goosebumps break out on your arms, people tales which make you clinch your fists. A thick fog of eeriness surrounds you as you stride deeper and deeper into the forest. What’s at the other end? I couldn’t stop thinking about it, yet I didn’t want the book to be over.
Sounds like a great plot kept you hooked!
A missing child, a weird and remote place, and stories of witches in the dark, what more do you want? I am not one for horror, but Matt Wesolowski’s tales make me ask for more. I was surprised to be engrossed in the history of the forest. I could imagine that little boy, Alfie, alone in there for thirty years. If a story is told right, you wonder, you care, you want answers. I wanted it all! And I got more than I wanted!!! The final twist made my jaw drop so much I thought for a second it would reach the floor. Amid the strangeness, the accounts of six different people, the creepiness, and the questions, I could feel something else slither between the lines…
There is a lot of work behind this series. The author proved it again. A lot of work, and a spark of genius. Changeling is bold, challenging, and simply brilliant!
Get your copy on the Orenda e-store / Amazon / Kobo
Matt Wesolowski is from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in the UK. He is an English tutor for young people in care. Matt started his writing career in horror, and his short horror fiction has
been published in numerous UK- and US-based anthologies such as Midnight Movie Creature Feature, Selfies from the End of the World, Cold Iron and many more. His novella,
The Black Land, a horror set on the Northumberland coast, was published in 2013. Matt was a winner of the Pitch Perfect competition at Bloody Scotland Crime Writing Festival in 2015. His debut thriller, Six Stories, was an Amazon bestseller in the USA, Canada, the UK and Australia, and a WHSmith Fresh Talent pick, and film rights were sold to a major Hollywood studio…