Sunday, January 31, 2010



Dear Mystery Agent,

Yet another idiotic book has taken over fifteen-year-old Mitch's hometown. Just a craze, he hopes, like last year's obsession with vampires, because Mitch would rather pound a nail through his thumb than read. He's got better things to do, like hang out with Jen, or work on the shelf he’s building for her in his workshop.

But then the people he loves most get sucked into the book. His dad, for instance. Mitch has to pull him out from under a fallen truss while he--and everyone else on the construction site--continues to read. And even when Mitch and Jen realize people are reading themselves to death, Jen succumbs to the book’s mysterious pull. With Jen now under its spell, Mitch is the only one left to find some way to break the obsession...before he loses everyone he loves.

I am a member of SCBWI and the Florida Writers Association. Thank you for your time.


  1. I really like the concept here. I've never seen a plot like this before.

    However I'd include more about the mysterious book itself- what is it called, what's it about, etc? Is it magical somehow and forcing people to read it forever?

    Good closing line and good cliffhanger.

  2. Love the concept, sounds fresh and intriguing. I would put 'He hopes it's just a craze' as the 'because' part of this sentence didn't flow for me.
    You've set the stakes up well, but I am wondering what happens when they have read the book. Do they stop and start again?
    This query makes me want to read more - good luck!

  3. I love this concept. How funny. I'm thinking that the dad is injured under the fallen truss, but still can't put the book down. I would like to know more about the book though, but I guess that's the hook. Is could be a get rich quick book or a magic book. I would definitely read to find out.

  4. The idea is original, but I, too need a little more. This would be an interesting read!

  5. I agree with the others I would like to see a bit more of the plot in this. I don't mean give the whole thing away, but Gem's question about what happens when they stop, seems like something you should put in there. And maybe go into a bit more detail about HOW much they're sucked into the book. You know do they stop eating? Are they driving and reading? Stuff like that. Otherwise this is a great idea and unique. Hope I get to read it one day.

  6. Great idea. I agree with the other comments. Give a little more detail about the book/plot. Interesting concept!

  7. Actually, I'm pretty sure I've seen something like this in television shows, but that doesn't really detract from whether it'd be a fun story or not. I didn't really think about people getting to the end of the book, because I pictured them just reading endlessly, but since most books can be finished in a day or less if they're being read constantly, it is an excellent question.

  8. This is in NO WAY a criticism, but there's reference to a cursed book in Harry Potter that means the reader can never stop reading, and considering how the HP novels have pervaded our culture, a book playing with an idea from that world would probably get a great reception.

    Hmm. Rereading that I'm worried that it sounds like I'm suggesting that you took the idea from HP. I'm totally not. Only saying that it might really appeal to that readership.

    If the first sentence were more ambiguous, I think that might work in your favor. As it is, it already sounds sinister and powerful, whereas you could build to that.

    I'd definitely peek into this book if I found it in the library or bookstore.

  9. This query is perfect for me. Don't add more in because you've nailed it. It made me want to know the answers about what's going on - and that's exactly what you want in a query: to hook the agent so they want more.

  10. The first sentence threw me off, and I almost didn't want to finish. But I'm glad I did. This is a fresh idea and sounds fun. Hope to see it on bookstore shelves soon. My kids and I would love something like this.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.