ORLANDO — “The New Boarder” is a terrifying look at one man’s desperate attempt to escape from …. what? It’s not at all clear why Janus Mehlich is hiding in a small boarding house, terrified he’s going to get caught.
The novel by author Michael W. Freeman is available through Freeline Productions.
What’s It About?
Late one night, 30-year-old Janus breaks into a panic, throws his belongings into a suitcase and flees his apartment. After driving for several hours, he abandons his car in a wooded area and rents a small furnished room in a boarding house. His escape has begun.
This story reverses the traditional formula of the mystery novel, which typically reveals a shocking crime and then starts the hunt for a suspect. In “The New Boarder,” the reader knows who the suspect is, but has no idea what Janus has done.
As Janus hunts down local newspapers to see if there are any news reports about a possible law enforcement search to find him, the events in that quaint small town he’s hiding out in take on a strange, unpredictable twist.
Early on, Janus had noticed warnings posted around town advising people to be careful, because several local gay men disappeared and were later found dead and mutilated. The notices warn that a serial killer is stalking gay men. Quite by accident, Janus thinks he may have stumbled onto the identity of the killer — or does he?
“The New Boarder” takes a sometimes surreal look at a few terrifying days in the life of a tormented man. Janus believes he’s fighting inner demons, but doesn’t realize the full extent of the demonic situation he put himself in by renting that little room. He wanted to escape. Instead he got trapped.
Who Wrote It?
“The New Boarder” is Michael Freeman’s first novel, first drafted in 1981. It’s a story that builds up a considerable amount of tension and suspense as we follow Janus and his frantic efforts to avoid law enforcement at all cost, and lay low.
How To Order It:
“The New Boarder” is 217 pages long and is available to purchase on Amazon, as a Kindle eBook, and through the Freeline Productions online bookstore.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Michael Freeman, a resident of Orlando, has been a journalist since 1988. Throughout his career, he’s worked at some of the Sunshine State’s largest newspapers, including The Orlando Sentinel, The Lakeland Ledger, The Sun-Sentinel and The Jewish Journal.
Michael is also a playwright, active in Central Florida’s fast-growing theater community. He wrote and produced the original plays “Hooked,” “Copping a Craigie” and “Murder Sleep,” which premiered at the Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival. A passionate lover of theater and the arts, Michael is a guild member at The Orlando Shakespeare Theater and a member of the Playwrights Round Table in Orlando.
Michael is also the founder of Freeline Productions, a writing and editing service that distributes his fiction novels “Bloody Rabbit,” published in 2013, and “Koby’s New Home.”
Michael was born and raised in Fall River, Massachusetts, and has lived in Orlando since 2002. Michael now works for the Orlando Magic basketball team. He enjoys reading, traveling, the music of The Monkees, catching re-runs of the 1970s TV series “Kolchak The Night Stalker,” and the great art of comic books.
Michael is also the proud papa of his cats Fluffy, Midnight, and Peaches.
Michael Freeman is an Orlando journalist, playwright and author of the book “Koby’s New Home”. Contact him at Freelineorlando@gmail.com.