Thank you to Ordena books for sending me a free copy of Hydra in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.
Synopsis from Goodreads:
One cold November night in 2014, in a small town in the north west of England, 26-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. King finds himself immersed in an increasingly complex case, interviewing five witnesses and Arla herself, as he questions whether Arla’s responsibility for the massacre was a diminished as her legal team made out. As he unpicks the stories, he finds himself thrust into a world of deadly forbidden “games,” online trolls, and the mysterious Black-eyed Children, whose presence extends far beyond the delusions of a murderess.
I read Six Stories over the summer and really liked it but Hydra was even better than its predecessor! I felt creeped out while reading the first book, but Hydra is positively chilling! What I love most about both books is the originality. The entire book consists of six fiction podcasts, all part of a series. So at first, you have to give your brain some time to get into an unusual reading experience. The entire text is like a transcript for a six part podcast series including audio bytes, interviews and the host’s commentary. No other text is included.
The podcast setup of these books is very unique and original. But in addition to that, I think that is also what makes these books, Hydra especially, so suspenseful, griping and frightening. At times I had to remind myself that the book is fiction. Reading through an interview of a person who is having hallucinations is so sinister and in Hydra, felt so very real. I’ve spent a few days thinking about the ending and I still am not sure quite how I feel about it. A part of me likes it, but a part of me feels left hanging. I don’t want to say more for fear of giving anything away, but if you like unique books, or scary verging into horror then you would like Hydra. I rate it 4 out of 5 stars.