15 July 2022

Giveaway (5 copies) & Review of Once Upon A Camino by Matthew S. Wilson

* Copy courtesy of the author *
Once Upon A Camino by Matthew S. Wilson book cover

Nine years ago, I interviewed Melbourne based author Matthew S. Wilson about reading, writing and his debut novel at the time, The Devil's In The Detail. Since then, Matthew has been working hard on his next masterpiece and has re-emerged from years of research with a compelling adventure story set in Spain.

Today marks the release of Once Upon A Camino by Matthew S. Wilson and to celebrate, Carpe Librum is giving away 5 copies signed by the author. This is an international giveaway and entries close at midnight AEST Sunday 24 July. See below to enter. 


So, what did I make of it? I enjoyed it! Once Upon A Camino is about Tom and his journey on foot as a pilgrim along the Camino de Santiago in Spain. Tom is a successful white collar worker in London in love with his girlfriend Ana. He decides to fly to Spain in order to ask for her family's blessing to marry, but Ana's grandfather wants him to prove his love for her. What happens next is an unexpected series of events as Tom agrees to walk the Camino so he can propose to Ana.

Along the gruelling journey, Tom meets fellow pilgrims and they share their stories and motivations for making the same trek. The setting reminded me a little of a modern day take on The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer (there's even a Knight!) and I really enjoyed it.

Inspired by his own trek along the Camino in 2010, Once Upon A Camino is thoroughly researched and gave me an insight into Spanish history I hadn't encountered before. Unfolding from multiple character points of view and comprising an element of historical fiction, Once Upon A Camino is a story about love, courage, friendship, regret, fate and destiny and was beautifully told.

My Rating:


Tom, a 28-year-old investment banker, lives a successful life in London with his girlfriend, Ana. Intending to propose, he flies to Spain, seeking her family’s blessing. But his plan runs aground when Ana’s grandfather, Tito, insists the union cannot proceed until Tom walks the Camino de Santiago, an 800-kilometre pilgrimage across Spain.

‘A man would walk across a country without hesitation for the love of his life, no?’

Upon commencing the Camino, Tom’s plans further unravel – his backpack mysteriously disappears, and his phone loses its signal. And when all the other hikers seemingly vanish, Tom makes a discovery that changes everything. Suddenly pursued by the authorities, Tom’s only path home to Ana is alongside a motley band of pilgrims bound for Santiago – among them a reclusive fisherman named Fernando, who carries his own dark secret.

Once Upon a Camino is a novel about time. It focuses on past regrets and untrodden paths. It’s a story of friendship and connection, of following your heart, despite your better judgement. It’s written for those who’ve walked the path to Santiago and others who simply enjoy life’s unpredictable journey and the strangers we meet along the way.
Carpe Librum image promoting giveaway of 5 signed copies of Once Upon A Camino by Matthew S. Wilson


This giveaway has now closed and the winners will be announced soon.

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