I mentioned in my big thinky post Genre fiction, Mercantilism, Geology that I was probably going to recommend C.L. Polk’s Even Though I Knew The End. I was right. I’ve finished it now and enjoyed it a great deal and I strongly suggest getting it when it comes out.
This post will necessarily be less in depth than the review I’m writing for GeeklyInc (I’ll share a link to that review when it goes live). I got pre-release access to the book through writing a review for them, so that’s where the full review will go. But ETIKTE is good. Finishing it has left me excited to hunt down more of C.L. Polk’s work.
There’s a certain joy to discovering a book I love by an author who has other work I haven’t read yet. As a kid, that was how I chose most of my new reads: I’d discover an author I liked, and then I’d hunt through everything else I could find by them (even when it wasn’t necessarily “age-appropriate”). My approach was also pretty scattershot, because this was before I had access to or knowledge of ways to find an author’s complete bibliography (unevenly distributed access to the internet, etc.). Each visit to the bookstore or library was a treasure hunt, and used bookstores were especially appealing. Any good genre fiction shelf could be full of gold.
That’s felt less true over the years. As I’ve gotten older, I haven’t chased every last book by an author in the same way. I think part of that comes from my discovery that, sometimes, I don’t actually like all of an author’s books. Perhaps it’s because I’m more judgmental and genre-savvy now, or because I’m more willing to put a book down when I don’t like it, or maybe I’m jaded by my access to the internet’s firehose of information… but these days I more often see those shelves and think “ah yes, more of the same.” I read the jacket copy, see the comp titles, and don’t feel hooked. Finding genre-fiction gold feels rarer, and like it takes more work.
All of which is to say… when my friend over at GeeklyInc offered me Even Though I Knew The End, I had no idea I was about to relive that whole giddy treasure-discovery experience. I don’t know whether C.L. Polk’s other stories bear any resemblance to ETIKTE, but I’m damn well going to give them a try. After the fun I had with this book, I’d be a fool not to.