The title of this post is taken from an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) review from Red City Review of my forthcoming book, I KNOW WHEN YOU’RE GOING TO DIE, now available as a .99 cent pre-order on Amazon. This book releases February 25, 2020, and the .99 cent eBook price will remain in place from now through the first week of release, so grab it while the grabbing is good. LOL The novel will also be available in paperback and audiobook on release day. The pre-order link is at the end of this post.
Seriously, I’m super excited about this new book, and February seems like soooo far away, but I want ample time to get ARCs out to review sites and bloggers. I’m also open to Bookstagrammers who would read and post about the book. All I ask is that early readers consider posting an Amazon review on release day, and/or on Goodreads or their blogs anytime between now and February 25th.
This book has gone through many revisions and edits and beta readers, including two awesome teen readers at LitPick.com who gave me absolutely stellar suggestions for making the story and characters stronger. I’m also grateful to an outstanding author, Huston Piner, for providing terrific and insightful feedback, and to my tireless editor, Loretta Sylvestre, who walked me through more drafts than I can remember.
More than a whodunit, I Know When You’re Going To Die is a whowilldoit because the tale hinges on preventing a murder that hasn’t happened yet. It’s a mystery and a suspenseful thriller, but for those who may be squeamish about blood, it’s not at all gory. The characters are engaging and the plot is page-turning fun. The cover art by the amazing Streetlight Graphics perfectly captures an image that’s at the heart of the mystery.
For inquiries about reading and reviewing an ARC, feel free to contact me at my website (www.michaeljbowler.com) or through Goodreads (Michael J. Bowler). The blurb is below and underneath that, I’m reposting the entire Five-Star Red City Review because that writer champions this book more passionately than I ever could.
Thanks for checking out my work!
Leonardo Cantrell is a painfully shy sixteen-year-old who cannot look people in the eye. One night while he’s volunteering at a homeless shelter, an old man forces eye contact and gives Leo the power to see Death.
His best, and only, friend—J.C. Rivera—thinks this new power is cool until Leo accidentally looks into J.C.’s eyes and “sees” his murder, a murder that will occur in less than two weeks. Stunned and shaken, the two boys sift through clues in Leo’s “vision” in a desperate effort to find the killer and stop him before he can strike.
Aided by feisty new-girl-at-school, Laura, the boys uncover evidence suggesting the identity of the murderer. However, their plan to trap the would-be killer goes horribly awry and reveals a truth that could kill them all.
I Know When You’re Going to Die
by Michael J. Bowler
The concepts of predestination, of being able to see and affect the future, of having a unique glimpse into the workings of life and death, all pervade the narrative of I Know When You’re Going to Die by Michael J. Bowler. The novel opens on a young man, Leo Cantrell, who is painfully introverted and reserved, serving his local LA homeless population at a mission shelter. He is only sixteen, but he already possesses wisdom, kindness, and compassion beyond his years. He frequents the homeless shelter with such regularity that he knows everyone, and everyone knows him. There’s one man in particular, though, who catches his eye one fateful day. He stares deeply into his soul, and the man endows him with a remarkable gift: the ability to see exactly when and how others will die when he looks into their eyes. The man tells him, “I gave you a great gift, boy. Or maybe a curse.” And for the remainder of the novel, Leo explores whether his newfound ability truly is a gift or a horrible curse. His entire world turns upside down when he’s forced to look into his best friend J.C.’s eyes, and he sees his brutal murder only two weeks in the future. It’s a race against the clock for them to try to figure out how to bend the rules of predestination, prevent the murder from happening, and identify the would-be killer. With the help of the new girl at their high school, Laura, J.C. and Leo attempt the nearly impossible and defy fate. Will their attempts be thwarted? Will they be able to ensnare the potential murderer? Only time will tell.
Because I Know When You’re Going to Die is written in the first-person, Leo’s perspective, the reader enjoys a deep introspective look into his psyche as he processes the implications and repercussions of the ability he didn’t ask for, but nonetheless has. It’s an intimate way to tell such a heart-pounding tale that centers on the ideas of fate, decency, and humanity. Leo grapples with what is right, with what it means to have the power to look into someone’s eyes and see their death. He struggles with whether or not to warn them. Would he want to know, were he in someone else’s shoes? When it comes to his closest friend in the world, though, the choice is clear, and that choice informs and drives the remainder of the narrative into complex and interesting places heretofore unimagined by other novels of the same genre. Death is an inevitability, but this coming-of-age YA novel explores the very real lengths to which we will go to preserve love, life, and all that is precious within those concepts. Beyond the scope of the narrative, the language of I Know When You’re Going to Die captivates and enthralls the reader to the very end. It’s the kind of literary style that gets wonderfully stuck in your head and entreats you to keep reading well past the time you told yourself you would stop.
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