Query: MOORHOUSE (Upper MG Dark Fantasy)

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Jillian Karger
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Joined: February 23rd, 2014, 10:54 pm

Query: MOORHOUSE (Upper MG Dark Fantasy)

Post by Jillian Karger » February 24th, 2014, 12:01 am

Hey everyone! Thank you so much in advance for any feedback you are able to give me on my query. It is much appreciated!

Dear Agent:

Vita Lawrence only has two friends, and one of them is imaginary.

When her only real friend grows out of playing make-believe, Vita spends more and more time with her best imaginary friend, a sixteen-legged cat (a caterpillar with an emphasis on the cat) named Melina. One day Vita spies a little green monster hopping around the grounds of an old building in her Brooklyn neighborhood.

The monster leads Vita into Moorhouse where the frightening headmonsters announce that they have finally found the fourth contestant in their world-building competition. Three other imaginative children are already striving to win the Crossing Cloak, which will enable the winner to bring an imaginary friend back to the real world. Vita is determined to win so she can bring Melina home with her.

Whoever wins the competition will help the monsters by morphing their homeland’s desolate landscape into his or her fantasy world. The monsters teach Vita to build a scale model of her fantasy world of Whirlyton with only her mind and a clay-like substance.

Some of the monsters, however, don’t seem to want their world to be saved. They taunt and sabotage Vita as she builds.

Vita begins to lose track of how long she has been at Moorhouse or what her family looks like. She realizes that there were children before her who have been forgotten by every contestant but her friend Wile. Wile disappears and Vita forgets even her own name. It is only when an naggingly familiar family moves into her castle unannounced that she begins to remember and resolves to find out what happened to her friend.

MOORHOUSE (88,200 words) is an upper middle-grade dark fantasy and should appeal to readers who enjoy the expansive imagination of THE NEVERENDING STORY by Michael Ende and the whimsical creepiness of CORALINE by Neil Gaiman. I graduated summa cum laude from New York University with a degree in English and a minor in Dramatic Literature.

The first ten pages of the novel are below. Thank you so much for your consideration.


Jillian Karger

Posts: 84
Joined: March 12th, 2010, 4:41 pm

Re: Query: MOORHOUSE (Upper MG Dark Fantasy)

Post by kenpochick » April 17th, 2014, 7:50 pm

I see that you posted this a while ago. I just wanted to say it sounds good! Maybe just polish the last couple of paragraphs and combine them, but otherwise sounds like a great story. :-)

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Joined: September 18th, 2014, 6:12 am

Re: Query: MOORHOUSE (Upper MG Dark Fantasy)

Post by mahdeen » September 18th, 2014, 6:15 am

This is my first critique, which I am in no way qualified to provide, so take it with a grain of salt. I have read through the Query Shark archives, though.
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Re: Query: MOORHOUSE (Upper MG Dark Fantasy)

Post by Anigirl » September 27th, 2014, 11:11 am

This is so good that I'm jealous. I LOVE that opening line, and the snippets of humor (caterpillar with emphasis on the cat made me chuckle.) The stakes are clear and you certainly left me wanting to read more.

I'm no lit agent, but I really can't see this NOT getting one. Very good :)

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