Sunday, January 31, 2010



Dear Mystery Agent:

When fifteen-year-old, Los Angeles bred Shelby Brockhurst meets her clodhopper relatives for the first time, she understands why her mom tried to keep them a secret. Shelby’s grandparents only have running water when you move the pump handle, and her cousins are complete barbarians, especially the twins, with their gross preoccupation with bologna rinds and dog butts. Throw in a wild mountain boy by the name of Eddie Pickens, and Shelby begins to wonder why any sane person would stay here.

But as the summer progresses, Shelby discovers the love that holds this family together, and the pain her mother’s leaving caused. She also finds Eddie has a way of making her heart do a crazy little happy dance every time he comes near.

With the questionable assistance of her hayseed cousins, Shelby devises a plan to reunite her mom with her family. Her grandfather doesn’t realize he’s helping; he’s too busy looking for his imaginary pigs. If Shelby’s plan doesn’t work, she may never see her relatives, or Eddie, again. That would be worse than, well, than locking the barn door after the cows get out.

Blackberry Summer is a 72,000 word YA novel.

Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.



  1. This sounds like a delightful story and one that I would read for sure. I want to know why the mum has kept the family a secret.

    I love how you have described the characters in only a few words.

  2. Sounds like a cute story that would be a fun read.

  3. This sounds great!

    Just one little criticism though, maybe you could also put 'hayseed cousins' as a description in the first paragraph of the story? So reiterating it the second time will make things clearer. :)

  4. I really like this query, especially working in the idiom in a way that shows it's out of character. Really nicely done.

  5. I know these people! And I really like this query and the story. I wouldn't change a thing.

  6. I like this story. The set up and everything. I'm just wondering why she meets them--what's the catalyst for the story--it might help me understand Shelby's desperation to have her mom be reconciled.

    It sounds like a totally sweet and fun story. Good luck!

  7. I agree with the above commenters, this sounds like a lot of fun to read. I love the idea of Grandpa looking for imaginary pigs. Good luck with this.


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