Query - Hidden in Shadows - Take 2

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Nicole Zoltack
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Query - Hidden in Shadows - Take 2

Post by Nicole Zoltack » August 19th, 2010, 12:19 pm

I would appreciate any comments on this query, thanks!

Assassin Lorna McCloud has an advantage over her victims – the power to create and hide in artificial shadows; however, the one target she longs for most remains elusive – her father's murderer.

With no leads, Lorna continues to accept assignments including a small island king with a high price on his head. King Alaric is everything Lorna isn't – noble, kind, good. When she falls for Alaric, Lorna distances herself from her assassin lifestyle but cannot escape her past. A massive gravesite on the island provides clues to her father's murder.

Lorna has never before desired to live a normal life. Torn between murder and love, Lorna cannot escape her ardent desire for revenge even if it means losing her only chance of living a happy life with Alaric.

HIDDEN IN SHADOWS is a complete 96,000-word urban fantasy novel with romantic elements.

Preacher
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Re: Query - Hidden in Shadows - Take 2

Post by Preacher » August 19th, 2010, 1:44 pm

Assassin, check! Looking for the murder of a family member, check! Those things work for me; however, i think in the first paragraph there is info we don't need. I don't think it is important to know what her power is. It is important to know the main character and what she<in this case, is trying to do - Lorna McCloud is searching for her father's killer, or something like that.

A conflict between love, or the possibility of it, and revenge for murder is interesting enough for me. I think you add too many details that may not be necessary and use cute words like "ardent" when you may not need them. Don't dazzle with vocabulary and descriptive passages. Dazzle with a good hook and a good conflict, like you have here. Just talk about Lorna having a chance for love with Alaric, but then finding the gravesite turns her world upside down or something like that. Then you have the conflict of the shot at love agianst the need for revenge. I think if you do that, you'll have something that works nicely.

Multimedia
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Re: Query - Hidden in Shadows - Take 2

Post by Multimedia » August 19th, 2010, 3:21 pm

A few thoughts / questions:

-How was her father murdered? The only information we have of it at the moment is that initially there were no leads. Is how he was murdered important to know?

-What kind of clues are found on the island? I understand it has to be a bit vague, so as to tantalize, but I think it's too vague as it stands.

-Why is Alaric opposed to her assassin lifestyle, if it seems she's mostly doing it to avenge her father's murder (a motivation a lot of people would admit--especially in the world of fiction--is appropriate)?

Hope this helps!

Joel Q
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Re: Query - Hidden in Shadows - Take 2

Post by Joel Q » August 20th, 2010, 1:32 pm

Nicole Zoltack wrote: Assassin Lorna McCloud has an advantage over her victims – the power to create and hide in artificial shadows; however, the one target she longs for most remains elusive – her father's murderer.
So is this a superpower or magic? Is this her only power? not that you need all the details, but a little bit more would help. Maybe make this two sentences.
Nicole Zoltack wrote: With no leads, Lorna continues to accept assignments including a small island king with a high price on his head. King Alaric is everything Lorna isn't – noble, kind, good. When she falls for Alaric, Lorna distances herself from her assassin lifestyle but cannot escape her past.
To me this kind of jumps from to kill him to love him. I need more to make this work.
Nicole Zoltack wrote: A massive gravesite on the island provides clues to her father's murder.
I don't like the coincedence of this, she just happends to be on this island and there just happends to be a clue.
Nicole Zoltack wrote: Lorna has never before desired to live a normal life. Torn between murder and love, Lorna cannot escape her ardent desire for revenge even if it means losing her only chance of living a happy life with Alaric.
You haven't told us why she has to make a choice--murder, love or revenge. We don't know what's at stake besides her feelings.
Nicole Zoltack wrote: HIDDEN IN SHADOWS is a complete 96,000-word urban fantasy novel with romantic elements.

thewhipslip
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Re: Query - Hidden in Shadows - Take 2

Post by thewhipslip » August 27th, 2010, 1:09 pm

Nicole Zoltack wrote:This reads a bit like the novel Graceling.

Assassin Lorna McCloud has an advantage over her victims – the power to create and hide in artificial shadows; however, the one target she longs for most remains elusive – her father's murderer.

With no leads, Lorna continues to accept assignments including a small island king with a high price on his head Is this set in another time/world?. King Alaric is everything Lorna isn't – noble, kind, good. When she falls for Alaric, Lorna distances herself from her assassin lifestyle but cannot escape her past. A massive gravesite on the island provides clues to her father's murder This doesn't do as a hook. It's too vague. Tell us what the clues are, or why this bit of info is more important than other clues she's had..

Lorna has never before desired to live a normal life. Torn between murder and love, Lorna cannot escape her ardent desire for revenge even if it means losing her only chance of living a happy life with Alaric This is also too vague. What is the clue? Does it trace back to Alaric?.

HIDDEN IN SHADOWS is a complete 96,000-word urban fantasy novel with romantic elements.
This just needs more specificity.
http://elenasolodow.blogspot.com/ - Submit your 250-500 word excerpt to be read out loud in a vlog post!

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