Dare to Know: A Novel (Paperback)

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Dare to Know: A Novel (Paperback)


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September 2021 Indie Next List

“A company can tell you with 100% accuracy when you are going to die. But what happens when you live beyond your expiration date? As you read Dare to Know, your sense of reality will melt away.”
— Bob Lingle, Off the Beaten Path Bookstore (NY), Lakewood, NY

Staff Reviews

Step right up! The perfect Fall techno-thriller is here! Blake Crouch fans rejoice, for here is another author who can send you on a mind-thrilling roller coaster!
Dare to Know is the name of a company that can predict (to the second) when you will die. Imagine a world where, if you had money to pay, you could purchase the information of your death, and that information could be 99% accurate. Would you do it? Our narrator was the most prestigious salesperson working for Dare to Know. Similar to a used car salesman, commission is how you make money in the death-prediction business. However, someone started offering the same service as Dare to Know, but cheaper and business began to slow down. Not only that, but in a desperate moment, our Narrator has done the calculations on himself. He should have died 23 minutes ago. With nothing left to lose, and living on borrowed time, he has decided that he is going to make amends for things that happened a long time ago, and try to understand why he is still alive in the process.
The twists and turns that James Kennedy puts you through will give you whiplash. Just like Blake Crouch, you will never guess what is coming, and it will leave you speechless. Trust me on this, Dare to Know is a wild ride that will stick in the back of your brain long after you finish it.
— Zach

“A razor-smart sci-fi corporate noir nightmare. Dare to Know is what happens when Willy Loman sees through the Matrix. A heartbreaking, time-bending, galactic mindbender delivered in the mordantly funny clip of a doomed antihero.”—Daniel Kraus, co-author of The Shape of Water

Now in paperback, this mind-bending and emotional speculative thriller is set in a world where the exact moment of your death can be predicted—for a price, featuring an excerpt from the upcoming Bride of the Tornado.

Our narrator is the most talented salesperson at Dare to Know, an enigmatic company that has developed the technology to predict anyone’s death down to the second. Divorced, estranged from his sons, and broke, he's driven to violate the cardinal rule of the business by forecasting his own death day. The problem: his prediction says he died twenty-three minutes ago. 
The only person who can confirm its accuracy is Julia, the woman he loved and lost during his rise up the ranks of Dare to Know. As he travels across the country to see her, he’s forced to confront his past, the choices he's made, and the terrifying truth about the company he works for. 
Wildly ambitious and highly immersive, this thought-provoking thriller explores the destructive power of knowledge and collapses the boundaries between reality, myth, and conspiracy as it races toward its shocking conclusion.
James Kennedy is the author of The Order of Odd-Fish and the founder and director of the 90-Second Newbery Film Festival. Before becoming a writer, he was a software engineer with a degree in physics and philosophy, subjects he continues to explore in his writing. Dare to Know is his first adult novel.
Named One of The Times' Best Books of 2021
September 2021 Indie Next Pick

“A surreal premise and an unconventional revelation fuel a cosmic journey....a wholly original novel that’s bound to frustrate just as many as it entrances.”—Esquire

“A fascinating, compulsively readable thriller.”—The Guardian

“Imagine Donna Tartt’s The Secret History getting a good edit at last, and you glimpse something of this book’s occult power. Essential reading for the gathering dark.”—The Times Saturday Review

“An entertainingly mind-bending read.”—Financial Times

“Audaciously clever and well-written...a quite superb piece of storytelling: vivid, thought-provoking and unsettling.”—SFX Magazine (5 stars)

“A creepy thriller that reads a little like Stephen King writing Glengarry Glen Ross.—GeekDad

“Imagine what would happen if Chuck Palahniuk, Enrico Fermi, and the Brothers Grimm got together to raise a child...Sci-fi, snark-horror and futuristic thriller fans will love it.”Terri Schlichenmeyer for The Guam Daily Post

“[An] enjoyable slipstream thriller....Readers with a taste for the synchronicity of the cosmic with the commonplace are sure to be entertained.”—Publishers Weekly

“Dare To Know will prompt the reader to consider the philosophical implications of life and death itself.”—Booklist

“[A] genre-bending thriller...good pacing and clever plotting keep the pages turning.”—New York Journal of Books