Even Though I Knew the End (Hardcover)

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Even Though I Knew the End By C. L. Polk Cover Image

Even Though I Knew the End (Hardcover)


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November 2022 Indie Next List

“Short, sweet, romantic, and full of secrets. This magical noir stars wonderful characters and so many twists and turns that I never knew quite what was going to happen next. A delightful ride, handbasket optional.”
— Lindsey Pattavina, R.J. Julia Booksellers, Madison, CT

Staff Reviews

This is the perfect book to get you out of a reading slump. It’s a sapphic historical fantasy noir with the perfect amount of mystery, longing, and desperation that will hook you right from the beginning. I especially loved the world building, and I found myself wanting to linger in it a bit longer. 

— Hailey

A New York Times Best Romance of 2022!

C. L. Polk turns their considerable powers to a fantastical noir with Even Though I Knew the End.

“Eerie, sharp and fiercely bittersweet.” —The New York Times

A magical detective dives into the affairs of Chicago's divine monsters to secure a future with the love of her life. This sapphic period piece will dazzle anyone looking for mystery, intrigue, romance, magic, or all of the above.

An exiled augur who sold her soul to save her brother's life is offered one last job before serving an eternity in hell. When she turns it down, her client sweetens the pot by offering up the one payment she can't resist—the chance to have a future where she grows old with the woman she loves.

To succeed, she is given three days to track down the White City Vampire, Chicago's most notorious serial killer. If she fails, only hell and heartbreak await.

C. L. Polk is the author of the World Fantasy Award winning novel Witchmark, the first novel of the Kingston Cycle. After leaving high school early, they have worked as a film extra, sold vegetables on the street, and identified exotic insect species for a vast collection of lepidoptera before settling down to write silver fork fantasy novels. Polk lives near the Bow River in Calgary, Alberta, in a tiny apartment with too many books and a yarn stash that could last a decade. They ride a green bicycle with a basket on the front. They spend too much time on Twitter.
Product Details ISBN: 9781250849458
ISBN-10: 1250849454
Publisher: Tordotcom
Publication Date: November 8th, 2022
Pages: 144
Language: English

An NPR Best Speculative Fiction Book of 2022!

“Eerie, sharp and fiercely bittersweet.” —The New York Times

“Noir and fantasy often seem to go together, but those two elements seldom uplift each other quite as well as they do in Even Though I Knew the End” —The Washington Post

“Stylish supernatural noir with a heart and a thrumming pulse. I devoured it.” —Laini Taylor

“This is a must-read for those who like their queer fantasy with a little grit and a lot of soul (pun intended).” —Booklist, starred review

Even Though I Knew the End rockets along from the very first page, with the details of author C.L. Polk’s alternate Chicago revealing themselves exactly when required.” —BookPage, starred review

“Powerful, emotional, stylish and smart, Polk proves themself yet again to be a talent not to be ignored.” —Locus

Even Though I Knew the End is Polk at the height of their considerable powers: romance, enchantment, tragedy, and courage to the bitter end.” —Elizabeth Bear

“Readers who fell into recent Jazz Age urban fantasies...will love Polk's latest.” —Library Journal, starred review

“Bracing as a slug of bourbon, with a twist of pain on the drop—or is that hope? Polk’s back with a cold-eyed winner.” —Max Gladstone

“C.L. Polk twists the hardboiled detective subgenre into something new and fresh and enticingly queer. …[Even Though I Knew the End is] a thrilling, charming novella.” —Tor.com

“Vivid and charming with a touch of noir edge, but way more heart.” —Rebecca Roanhorse

“A layered exploration of love and power with genuine emotional stakes and a soaring, perfectly bittersweet payoff. It’s another winner.” —Publishers Weekly

Mass Center for the Book 2023 Reading Challenge

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