On Christmas Eve in 1988, seven-year-old Alfie Marsden vanished in the Wentshire Forest Pass, when a burst tyre forced his father, Sorrel, to stop the car. Leaving the car to summon the emergency services, Sorrel returned to find his son gone. 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, his son and his ex-partner, to try to find out what really happened that fateful night. He takes a journey 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 where Alfie is…
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.
Changeling is another fantastic, eerie addition to the Six Stories Series. This is a book that plays on childhood fears of a dark wood and what lurks in there. It will get under your skin and into your mind making you think about it constantly. Every knocking noise made me jump and had me on edge until I had investigated where the source was coming from, a sure sign of a fabulous book.
The story starts off slowly with a lot of back ground information into the disappearance and the history of the woods where Alfie disappeared. My interest was immediately piqued by the supernatural tales that come from the woods and the unexplained occurrences that happened during the investigation. The tension then gradually increases as Scott delves deeper into the story and the people involved. The author skillfully weaves a complex and chilling tale that grips the reader throughout as they wait to discover what had happened. This tension is added to by Scott’s reluctance to Investigate the incident leading the reader to wonder what he thinks he might find.
I must admit I had many theories on what the outcome would be but was proved wrong about all of them as the amazing twist at the end took me completely by surprise which I always love. Although surprising the twist seemed quite plausible and was a fantastic conclusion to the story.
There are a few descriptions that some people might struggle with involving child neglect and abuse which are in keeping with the story so if you don’t like that kind of thing just be aware. I’m not sure if it affected me more because my eldest is the same age as Alfie but it didn’t ruin the book for me.
This is the third book in this series and the third I’ve read, though I don’t think the books have to be read in order as they are all individual stories. In my opinion Changeling is the author’s best yet and I’m seriously excited to see what he comes up with next.
Huge thanks to Anne Cater and Orenda books for my copy of this book and for inviting me onto the blog tour. If you like chilling, dark reads then you’ll love this book!
About The Author:
Matt Wesolowski is an author 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- an US-based anthologies such as Midnight Movie Creature, 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. Hydra, was published in 2018 and became an international bestseller.
Follow Matt on Twitter @ConcreteKraken and on his website: mjwesolowskiauthor.wordpress.com