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Cold Calling

3.36  ·  Rating details ·  70 ratings  ·  60 reviews
You spend your days staring into a computer screen, trying to sell life insurance to young couples with new babies.

You spend your nights staring into a computer screen, extracting filth from and injecting bile into the internet.

You still live with the same dickhead housemate you went to university with.
Your only respite from computer screens are nights spent getting smashe
89 pages
Published by Dead Bird Press
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3.36  · 
Rating details
 ·  70 ratings  ·  60 reviews

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Zuky the BookBum
People will put up with all manner of perversion, all manner of fucked-up-ness, they’ll positively revel in it, but what people won’t tolerate is boredom.

To a certain extent, I did enjoy this, but I don't feel comfortable saying that due to the depravity and obscenity of it. This certainly has some American Psycho vibes to it, a book which I thoroughly enjoyed, but Cold Calling somehow seems to excel Bateman's darkness with Rhys' spur-of-the-moment crime. I suppose because in American Psycho,
Lisa *OwlBeSatReading*
Need some time to erm.....digest this! It was horrible. In a highly entertainingly sick kinda way!

So, Cold Calling is a short and not at all sweet story of a psychopathic white-collar employee who basically looses the plot.

God help you if he calls to offer you life insurance and you piss him off.

With elements of American Psycho (the movie I've seen, the book is TBR) this book is absolutely gross. It's sick and twisted and, for me, extremely enjoyable. Does that make me sick and twisted too?! I
Karen Whittard
I would like to thank Haydn Wilks for the opportunity to read your book for an honest review.

Have you read too close by Gayle Curtis? If you did and you liked it this book is for you. I thought Too Close was near the knuckle. Cold calling is below the belt and then deeper.

This book is so dark you need a flood light to help you get out of it.

It is sick as grotesque but really addictive. If you like horror/slasher movies/ Quintin Tarintino then this book is for you. Which is probably why I quite
Jan 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Be warned. This novel is sick and grotesque; but utterly addictive. Haydn Walks is sick; and an exceptional captivator.

So Rhys Davies is a bit of a psycho, really, but not like Patrick Bateman premeditated type psycho (American Psycho). Rhys is an ordinary, boring guy in an ordinary, boring world. Then one day he accidentally does something a bit mad (understatement), and then his psych spirals out of control to do more sporadic stuff to "normalise" things. Whilst maintaining some kind of co-exi
William Bitner Jr.
Mar 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Just finished reading “Cold Calling” by Haydn Wilks. I would first like to thank Haydn for gifting me an eCopy of this book.

Go ahead, read this book...I dare you. This is a deeply disturbing, dark, gritty and at times difficult to read tale. Told in a second person narrative you enter the mindset of a very disturbing young man. If you are easily offended, this may not be a read for you as it leaves very little to the imagination and is rather up front and in you face. If you are not accustomed t
Jan 23, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, horror
I received a free copy of the ebook from the author in exchange for my honest review. This review or a version of it is posted on Amazon, Goodreads, and my Wordpress blog, TheCeaselessReaderWrites.

Cold Calling is not a pleasant story, and it is a difficult read, but it’s a not a bad book.
Let me explain. It’s not pleasant because, although not immediately apparent, it’s a horror story. It’s difficult for a couple of reasons. The story is told in a rapid-fire, second-person, semi-stream of conscio
Jan 13, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to Haydn Wilks for sending me this ebook in return for an honest review.
Where do I begin? This isn't for the faint hearted, it's deep dark and incredibly murky. The subject matter is much like many other horror/thriller books out there but this was more than that, it was disturbing to the point of nauseating.
Repetitive to the point of irritation at times and I found myself skipping whole paragraphs as it was just more of the same. Crude rather than just plain rude, more than I felt necess
Nicholas Masters
What did I just read?

Let's start off with the good.
Haydn Wilks does a splendid job of portraying Rhys' frame of mind as he spirals through the depths of depravity, fuelled by the belief/realization that he is simply a cog on the machine of consumerism, conformity, propaganda, and mundaneness, walking through life as a zombie spectator.

Additionally the portrayal is made even eerier with the first person narration carried out as ‘You…’ and not ‘I…’. On top of that the story is told hell to leather
John Hatley
Jan 18, 2017 rated it liked it
Without doubt the most horrifying horror story I've ever read.
Feb 07, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having belted through this at a speed bordering compulsion I cannot fail to give it three stars, but this has been a tricky decision for this is an extremely shocking book. New parents should not read it. It is really a novella, written without chapters but with some long, sub-stream of consciousness paragraphs.

I read Haydn's previous 'The Death of Danny Daggers' with some pleasure, although following a doubtful start. This latter book included some nasty violence, but nothing compared with this
Mar 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is one hell of a messed up book. It starts out somewhat relatable, the protagonist dissatisfied with the daily drudge of life but he continues onwards and feels more and more hopeless. Then something happens and the character finds a strange renewal of life as he gets into a gruesome and (there can only be one phrase to sum this up) fucked up situation. Whilst the subject matter will absolutely not be to everyone’s taste Haydn’s writing is brilliant, he effectively expresses the mind-set of ...more
Jan 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is not a book for the faint-hearted, be warned right now. The violence is graphic and perverse, the language gritty to say the least and much of the activities of the main character hard to witness. But it is also a very fine piece of writing indeed – even if it made me want to look away at times. It’s the sorry tale of a young disaffected man called Rhys Davies who has a mind-numbingly tedious job in a Cardiff call centre. His life is going nowhere, his days filled with the same meaningles ...more
Thomas Harte
Jan 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How to describe this book ? In many ways it defies categorisation. It will both shock you and humour you. You will see Tarantino in its pages and it also has that edginess of Trainspotting. At its heart it is a critique of the aimless and meaningless existence of those who are at the margins of society. The prose is tight, edgy and authentic. Prepare to be shocked. If you are tired of the very safe and predictable style of so much modern literature go on this journey to the margins of life in Ca ...more
May 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sent to me by the author in exchange for an honest review and all that jazz...

This is a beautifully crafted descent into darkness, a measured deterioration of all that is right. So much new literature is poorly written, but this uses language to draw you in and spit you back out again. Something it accomplishes in the blink of an eye, impossible to put down.

Read if you like to be challenged, if you like your darkest parts explored and if you like to be drawn downwards at the speed of a runaway t
Feb 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It has taken me a while to figure out how to review this book. It is a horror story, and as such, is very successful. Some of the things described are horrific, but they're supposed to be so that we see the depraved indifference of the main character. Is he crazy? I wondered that through the book. On the one hand, you can say that anyone who does the things in this book is crazy; on the other hand, he does so with precise planning, but then stumbles through the immediate afterward of his acts. D ...more
Ross Cumming
I got this book free in return for an honest review.

This review contains spoilers.

I have read Haydn Wilks' previous novel and quite enjoyed it and have also read Vol 1 of his Americosis series, which I really liked and have just discovered that the other 3 novellas in the series are also available.

Rhys Davies works at a call centre selling insurance to young couples and his evenings are spent in his locked bedroom at his shared house, pouring bile and vitriol onto Twitter and Facebook and then w
Feb 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Haydn Wilks has developed as a writer since penning The Death of Danny Daggers. Cold Calling offers up a much more focused plot and a provocative story and conclusion.

The main character, Rhys Davies, is well developed as a young call center phone jockey who faces constant rejection from his prospects, and then goes home to plug into the world wide web as a typical cowardly troll and as an active participant in internet porn. No surprisingly, Davies is empty and unfulfilled in the soul-killing ac
Linda Strong
He's a young man with a life that is going nowhere. He's a telemarketer for life insurance. He has the same roommate that he's had for 7 years. When he's not working, he's locked in his room watching porn. When he's in the mood, he spews ugly filth into social networks like Facebook.

Life just sucks!

And then one night he does the unthinkable. He gets drunk, that's not the unthinkable.
He does something new and exciting to him. Something that sets him apart from almost everyone else.

No spoile
Jan 18, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Received ARC from Haydn for review (honest review).

I have read another one of Haydns books and I was looking forward to reading this,as blurb given by Haydn sounded interesting.

I was not sure what to expect as the first book was quite gritty.Well this was way beyond gritty.Some parts are not for the squeamish and quite revolting really.It took a turn and kept going down a strange road that I had not even thought about.

It centres around the main characters from a Call Centre and the daily drudge
Jeremy S
Jan 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was second time reading a Wilks book, and unlike The Death of Danny Daggers, this one will not be for everybody. Part American Psycho, part Irvine Welsh, and part Jack Ketchum, Cold Calling is a disturbing book on many levels. I won't ruin any of the plot, but there were a few times I struggled to keep going and I have a pretty rock hard disposition with books.

Needless to say, if you like dark dark, or can handle disturbing themes, the book offers a really amazing look into true depravity.

Colin Murtagh
Mar 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, fiction, horror
I'd previously read one of the authors previous books, and quite enjoyed it. I was not, however, expecting this. He's got so dark.. This is not a book for anyone who is squeamish, fainthearted, or even nauseas at the sight of blood.
Rhys works in a soul destroying call centre, trying to sell insurance. At night he watches porn and trolls the net. Days drift into each other, and boredom is killing him. One night, while out on the booze, he goes a little too far, and does something that's going to
Mar 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.


Cold Calling is a novel is a gritty, dark and somewhat disturbing read. It takes a look at the darker side of humanity, pulling it kicking and screaming into the forefront of the page. Written in second person, it allows the reader no chance to escape and ensures that you are right at the heart of the action.

I was honestly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. I’m not a squeamish person but when I saw ho
Feb 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thrillers, fiction
I agree with most of my goodreads pal Denny's review below.
Just don't read it if you are easily shocked by psychotic behaviour.
It was refreshingly different from anything else i've been reading of late and i enjoyed it (although not as much as Danny Daggers).
I wonder if the seeds of this tale were conceived in the electronic millhouses endured during the author's 'year flitting between call centre firings'....

Haydn Wilks makes me think a bit of irvine Welsh. a kinda welsh version of Welsh if y
Brian Mackie
Jan 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
Having read Haydn Wilks before this one took me by surprise as some have already said it's not for the faint hearted. Would say it's more a horror story detailing one young mans downward spiral from call centre worker to killer
Ruthy lavin
Aug 08, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Vile. Hated it.
Thought I was going to read something crossed between Irvine Welsh and American Psycho.... this was much more deranged and quite frankly bloody distressing.
I won't be reading any more Haydn Wilks books, even if he is Welsh.
Amanda Farag
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Tara White
Mar 16, 2017 rated it liked it
wow... this book is certainly not for everyone. Haydn has one of those weird and wonderful minds necessary for all great horror stories. Was totally not what i expected but i cannot say i didn't get what you were aiming for. Well written regarding the relate-able drain of daily life and a repetitive routine. And of course the gore factor was just spot on if your into that kind of thing. Thank you so much Haydn for giving me the opportunity to read your book and i look forward to reading what els ...more
Feb 08, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, horror
I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review.

This is one hell of a fucked up book written by a author with one fucked up imagination (and I mean that in the nicest possible way)! This is quite a short book but nevertheless packs in quite a lot of disturbing imagery and is a savage attack on the mind numbing soullessness that makes up modern Britain and how we view 'work'. I think there is quite an interesting idea in here exploring that paid employment definitely do
Book Inspector
Jan 23, 2017 rated it liked it
Even from the description, it was visible, that this book will contain tons of strong language, and it did. I believe all of us had to deal with a “cold call” at least once in our lifetime, and it is really annoying, to be honest. This book is an insight into behind the scenes of “cold calling” companies, and I found it incredibly interesting to read. After reading this novel, I promised myself not to be rude to people who work in this industry, because as it showed, their life is already not th ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Haydn Wilks was born in Caerphilly, Wales in 1987. After graduating from King’s College London, he spent a year flitting between call centre firings before heading to Seoul, South Korea. Four years later, he headed to Groningen in the Netherlands to do an MA, and is now residing in Tokyo. His writing mixes the local and the global, throwing together a wide range of characters from across the inter ...more
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