Looking for a CP for a YA fantasy novel

Critique partners are worth their weight in gold. So (checking financial page) like $20,000 a pound.
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Skyless16
Posts: 12
Joined: April 25th, 2013, 12:43 am
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Looking for a CP for a YA fantasy novel

Post by Skyless16 » April 25th, 2013, 8:50 pm

I need a Critique Partner that will give me their honest opinion about my novel. I've had my friends and family read it but, as every writer probably knows, they're not the most reliable source for feedback. I just need to know if my novel needs to be revised in any way. Are there any holes in the plot? Without further ado, here's the query:

Alice Waters is an orphaned, sixteen year old girl who leads a normal life. She expects her life to stay normal, until her whole world is turned upside-down due to a dare she accepts from a shady school clique. Upon entering a supposedly cursed room in an abandoned inn, Alice finds herself thrown into a world where nothing is normal, especially not the perplexing creature who captured her. Now, in a strange new Wonderland where she’s to be sold as a pet, Alice has to fight for her freedom. With the help of a few unlikely friends along the way, Alice discovers that the freedom and normalcy of everyone in her world rests upon her shoulders. She alone can escape and stop the treacherous Council of Doorways from continuing their wicked plans concerning humans. Because far too many have been taken.

Word Count: 72,000

Title: The Truth About Rabbit Holes

Genre: YA Fantasy

Language: English

Of course, I'd be more than happy to critique any YA novel in return; it doesn't have to be fantasy. If you're interested, you can leave a comment or contact me at skyless16@yahoo(dot)com (obvious info: the (dot) is an actual dot: .)

itobias
Posts: 17
Joined: February 19th, 2011, 1:15 pm
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Re: Looking for a CP for a YA fantasy novel

Post by itobias » April 29th, 2013, 12:12 pm

I would be interested. Yours sounds interesting.
I have a YA novel, Bleamy's Corner, that was refected by an interested agent because the YA voice was not right. I need to take out my adult voice and make it that of a bright twelve year old.

Inserting (almost used interested again...) the first chapter:

Bleamy's Corner
Chapter 1
Cold Beginnings
Fortune came to few and survival had to be hacked out of the mean city that tempted the desperate to its streets.

Baldrich Bleamy, my beloved father, was stricken with typhus the week before my eleventh birthday. It was the end of November, 1802, only a month after our family journeyed from our failed farm in Kilmarnock, Scotland, to the “City of Hope”, London. By mid-December, he was bedridden and suffering horribly. How he contracted it, I know not. Mother said it was a common illness in this crowded city and that it came from bad air of which the city is rife.
It began with the fevers, then heavy coughing and horrible fevers. Slowly, painfully, he left this world denied the dignity he so deserved. It crushed everything I believed in to watch the strongest and best man I had ever known slowly taken from my life.
My mother kept me away as best she could. It was an awful way to wait for death and I swore to plunge a knife into my own heart if ever I caught the illness. For if it humbled and destroyed a man such as my father, then I surely would have no defense against its wrath.
An uncommonly clean snowfall smothered the streets the morning before Christmas. It was on that day my father passed silently from this life and my mother's mournful sobbing began. His death not only broke her heart, but stole her will to carry on. She ceased talking, eating and sleeping. Then, as if the world was not cruel enough, she too began to cough. I often saw blood on her handkerchief. I could not bear the thought of her choking to death as my father had.
For days we mourned him. My grief was two-fold, my mother's cough was deepening and it frightened me. I retreated to my bed to try to sleep away the pain and prayfully awaken from this nightmare.
It was grief that caused my mother to ignore me, at a time I so needed her assurances and received none. Her glow faded with each passing day, the sadness heavy in her hollow eyes. When she looked at me, it was as though I did not exist. That gaze will haunt me forever.
Six nights later, as I lay in my bed, my mother came to me and kissed me softly on my forehead. It was the first sign of affection since my father's death, and I drifted into my first good sleep in weeks. Just before dawn a strange silence awoke me. Something was wrong. I could not place my mind upon it and it itched at me. When my mother had kissed me, a tear had fallen upon my cheek. I could still feel the spot where the salt tightened my skin. When I arose and looked about the two rooms of our flat, she was not there. I put on my wool coat, shoes, and knitted hat and went outside to find her.
The moon hazily shone through the snowfall, creating a large and saintly halo. The creeping of morning tinted the horizon odd shades of red. I could see a set of fresh footprints by the front steps of our building , lonely in the manner and hour they were set, barely filled with new snow. I followed them down Tooley Street – not a soul in sight. I had never, in my two months in the city, seen London Bridge so empty. Nothing stirred in any direction. It was as if the world had quietly come to an end and I, Jeremy Bleamy, was its only survivor.
I followed the shallow prints down to the center of the bridge where they led in a circle and then turned to the bridge's east side. My heart rose in my throat and I stood there, frozen in the quiet.
On shaky legs, I made my way to the edge where the footprints ended. The snow was packed as if she had paced about for a time. I searched frantically for signs that she had walked away. There were none. I peered over the edge into the icy swift waters of the River Thames, as my mind screamed, “No!” I stood unsteadily, and saw only one direction for myself – to follow my mother.
It would take little effort; gravity would do the work for me. I thought for a moment. When I hit the water, what would I do then? Fight to live or let go and die? At that moment I knew I had to brave up. Perhaps there was a chance that these were not even my mother’s footprints. Perhaps this was all a bad dream.
I did not have it in me to jump, so I sat down in the soft snow staring into the icy black river. Its gentle sound belied that it had just taken my mother. The flakes shimmered in the moonlight as they fell, only to have the water take their lives also. The thick snow muffled all sound, save the soft gurgle of the river as it flowed against the legs of the bridge. Inside my head my breathing was heavy, as was the pounding of my heart. Tears came slowly, the pain of another loss too much to fathom.
How had the Bleamy family come to this? Needing rest from my grief, my mind fell to happier times. The snow steadily covered me and somehow felt warm – a blanket protecting me from the horrors I had seen. The first sign of life interrupted my thoughts – a barking dog – far off and unfamiliar. I drifted back to Kilmarnock and the tailor's shop, where the town kept their books, making a little library where I had spent hours with the comfort of reading, escaping to other worlds. Then I thought of my dog, Gulliver, back on the farm and it was the first hint of a smile to part my lips in weeks.

Skyless16
Posts: 12
Joined: April 25th, 2013, 12:43 am
Contact:

Re: Looking for a CP for a YA fantasy novel

Post by Skyless16 » November 24th, 2013, 12:56 pm

itobias wrote:I would be interested. Yours sounds interesting.
I have a YA novel, Bleamy's Corner, that was refected by an interested agent because the YA voice was not right. I need to take out my adult voice and make it that of a bright twelve year old.

Inserting (almost used interested again...) the first chapter:

Bleamy's Corner
Chapter 1
Cold Beginnings
Fortune came to few and survival had to be hacked out of the mean city that tempted the desperate to its streets.

Baldrich Bleamy, my beloved father, was stricken with typhus the week before my eleventh birthday. It was the end of November, 1802, only a month after our family journeyed from our failed farm in Kilmarnock, Scotland, to the “City of Hope”, London. By mid-December, he was bedridden and suffering horribly. How he contracted it, I know not. Mother said it was a common illness in this crowded city and that it came from bad air of which the city is rife.
It began with the fevers, then heavy coughing and horrible fevers. Slowly, painfully, he left this world denied the dignity he so deserved. It crushed everything I believed in to watch the strongest and best man I had ever known slowly taken from my life.
My mother kept me away as best she could. It was an awful way to wait for death and I swore to plunge a knife into my own heart if ever I caught the illness. For if it humbled and destroyed a man such as my father, then I surely would have no defense against its wrath.
An uncommonly clean snowfall smothered the streets the morning before Christmas. It was on that day my father passed silently from this life and my mother's mournful sobbing began. His death not only broke her heart, but stole her will to carry on. She ceased talking, eating and sleeping. Then, as if the world was not cruel enough, she too began to cough. I often saw blood on her handkerchief. I could not bear the thought of her choking to death as my father had.
For days we mourned him. My grief was two-fold, my mother's cough was deepening and it frightened me. I retreated to my bed to try to sleep away the pain and prayfully awaken from this nightmare.
It was grief that caused my mother to ignore me, at a time I so needed her assurances and received none. Her glow faded with each passing day, the sadness heavy in her hollow eyes. When she looked at me, it was as though I did not exist. That gaze will haunt me forever.
Six nights later, as I lay in my bed, my mother came to me and kissed me softly on my forehead. It was the first sign of affection since my father's death, and I drifted into my first good sleep in weeks. Just before dawn a strange silence awoke me. Something was wrong. I could not place my mind upon it and it itched at me. When my mother had kissed me, a tear had fallen upon my cheek. I could still feel the spot where the salt tightened my skin. When I arose and looked about the two rooms of our flat, she was not there. I put on my wool coat, shoes, and knitted hat and went outside to find her.
The moon hazily shone through the snowfall, creating a large and saintly halo. The creeping of morning tinted the horizon odd shades of red. I could see a set of fresh footprints by the front steps of our building , lonely in the manner and hour they were set, barely filled with new snow. I followed them down Tooley Street – not a soul in sight. I had never, in my two months in the city, seen London Bridge so empty. Nothing stirred in any direction. It was as if the world had quietly come to an end and I, Jeremy Bleamy, was its only survivor.
I followed the shallow prints down to the center of the bridge where they led in a circle and then turned to the bridge's east side. My heart rose in my throat and I stood there, frozen in the quiet.
On shaky legs, I made my way to the edge where the footprints ended. The snow was packed as if she had paced about for a time. I searched frantically for signs that she had walked away. There were none. I peered over the edge into the icy swift waters of the River Thames, as my mind screamed, “No!” I stood unsteadily, and saw only one direction for myself – to follow my mother.
It would take little effort; gravity would do the work for me. I thought for a moment. When I hit the water, what would I do then? Fight to live or let go and die? At that moment I knew I had to brave up. Perhaps there was a chance that these were not even my mother’s footprints. Perhaps this was all a bad dream.
I did not have it in me to jump, so I sat down in the soft snow staring into the icy black river. Its gentle sound belied that it had just taken my mother. The flakes shimmered in the moonlight as they fell, only to have the water take their lives also. The thick snow muffled all sound, save the soft gurgle of the river as it flowed against the legs of the bridge. Inside my head my breathing was heavy, as was the pounding of my heart. Tears came slowly, the pain of another loss too much to fathom.
How had the Bleamy family come to this? Needing rest from my grief, my mind fell to happier times. The snow steadily covered me and somehow felt warm – a blanket protecting me from the horrors I had seen. The first sign of life interrupted my thoughts – a barking dog – far off and unfamiliar. I drifted back to Kilmarnock and the tailor's shop, where the town kept their books, making a little library where I had spent hours with the comfort of reading, escaping to other worlds. Then I thought of my dog, Gulliver, back on the farm and it was the first hint of a smile to part my lips in weeks.
This goes by much too quickly. It's too short to be a chapter and you're just telling different events. I can't tell if it's supposed to be an odd prologue or a chapter. If it's a chapter, it needs to be heavily expanded, more detailed and specific. How long is the actual novel?

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