Author : Matt Wesolowski
Title : Deity
Series : Six Stories #5
Pages : 250
Publisher : Orenda Books
Publication date : December 18, 2020 (ebook)
| ABOUT THE BOOK |
A shamed pop star
A devastating fire
Which one is true?
When pop megastar Zach Crystal dies in a fire at his remote mansion, his mysterious demise rips open the bitter divide between those who adored his music and his endless charity work, and those who viewed him as a despicable predator, who manipulated and abused young and vulnerable girls.
Online journalist, Scott King, whose ‘Six Stories’ podcasts have become an internet sensation, investigates the accusations of sexual abuse and murder that were levelled at Crystal before he died. But as Scott begins to ask questions and rakes over old graves, some startling inconsistencies emerge: Was the fire at Crystal’s remote home really an accident? Whose remains – still unidentified – were found in the ashes? Why was he never officially charged?
| MY THOUGHTS |
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again : Matt Wesolowski’s books are just impossible to review when you’re a mere mortal like myself. I lack the vocabulary to adequately express the awesomeness of his work. “Holy shit” seems to be the extent of it. So, this review will most likely be at hot mess but it is what it is.
They say you should never meet your heroes or idols. In most instances the reality is hugely disappointing. After all, no matter their achievements or accomplishments they are still as human as the next person. Nowadays with social media, things are even harder to hide. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has unfollowed a favourite actor or singer for whatever reason. Celebrities and fans are in much closer contact these days. Good? Bad? Who knows.
But in Deity, there are rumours surrounding singer Zach Crystal and they are a different story altogether. His career was dogged by accusations. Was there a monster lurking underneath that public persona? Or were the rumours indeed just rumours? Now, Zach Crystal has perished in a fire at his secluded mansion in Scotland and his death has divided a nation. Good riddance to bad rubbish? Or a sad farewell to a talented and charitable “legend”?
Scott King returns with his podcast. Six episodes, six interviews, six stories about one case. Or in this instance, six ways to look at one man. Son, brother, uncle, friend, entertainer. Misunderstood genius? Perverted predator? Did anyone really know the man behind the legendary entertainer?
As I’ve already mentioned, I always find Matt Wesolowski’s books so incredibly hard to review. If you’re familiar with his work, then you know he never writes just a creepy thriller. Spooky and creepy, yes. But the monsters are always horrifyingly real. His stories have immense depth to them and are always far more thought-provoking than you might at first expect. Deity most definitely is and nobody really comes out of this story looking good.
The concept of telling these stories via podcasts remains as genius and as fresh as the first Six Stories instalment. (By the way, I’m told that these provide a truly excellent listening experience as well so if audiobooks are your thing, give them a go!) The various points of view made perfect sense and the reader is even given the opportunity to hear from the man himself by way of an exclusive tv interview he conducted a few months before his death.
One of the aspects of the story that I found truly fascinating was the fan perspective. I’m sure many of us can relate and I’m sure many of us have seen footage from Beatle-mania, for instance, and I’m also sure many of us look at things like that now and cringe. Thousands of adoring fans lining up, almost being brainwashed by lyrics, convinced the songs are about them, feeling this connection with whomever is singing and ultimately defending this object of their affection until the bitter end. This blind adoration for their idol, their god, their deity. How would a devoted fan feel if their idol suddenly singled them out? How easy is it for someone with bad intentions to take advantage of that? And when someone like that falls from grace, is it still okay to appreciate the catalogue of songs or movies they’ve left behind? Is it ever okay to remain silent? There are an incredible amount of topics in Deity that would make for fabulous discussions.
Deity is dark, disturbing, incredibly twisted, so SO immensely clever but also extremely thought-provoking and emotional throughout. And by the end, I was quite frankly just stunned into silence. Utterly speechless. My mind blown, as always happens with a Wesolowski book. So yes, “holy shit”. But also “best one yet”. Buy it now.
Huge thanks to Karen Sullivan at Orenda Books for the review copy! Deity is out on Friday in ebook, with the UK paperback to follow in February.