Sunday, January 31, 2010



Dear Mystery Agent:

For fourteen-year-old Chester Jones, attending a magic fat camp seriously sucks. So what if the outhouses clean themselves, rowboats fly, and sprites get drunk on Listerine?

Chester lives in a world where witches and warlocks coexist in harmony with non-magicals. His mom – brave slayer of shape shifters and witch extraordinaire – is a celebrity in the magical community. All his life he's lived in her shadow, and he wants to prove he's equally as brave. His opportunity comes when he discovers one of his camp counselors – a total whack job named Kyle Mutare – is really a shape shifter in disguise.

Chester spies on Kyle and learns of his plan to revive the creepy mummy of the shifters' god, a god who will lead the shifters in a war against the human race. When three campers go missing, Chester is sure Kyle has taken his friends to sacrifice them in an ancient resurrection ceremony. Wrong! No way that's gonna happen. He has to find the mummy first and save his friends. He already has the map of the burial site, and he's an A+ student in Incantations. It should be a piece of cake. Too bad dessert isn't on the camp menu.

Thank you so much for taking the time to judge this contest.



  1. This is good. I just got a little thrown at "Wrong!" because it read like he was wrong about what happened to his friends. Maybe "But there's no way he's gonna let that happen" would work instead. Also, I'd take out the "he has to find the mummy" line as it practically says the same thing as the line before it. But otherwise this reads well to me.

  2. I think you have all the elements here of a great query, and the GASP! concept Michael mentioned in the blog - somewhere.

    I think you could strengthen it a bit by using Chester's name a bit more. In the second paragraph you're talking about his mom, and I think when you switch back to Chester you should use his name at least once to clarify. Same in the third chapter when you're talking about Kyle - then switch back to Chester having to find the mummy first - that one confused me a bit as to whether it was Kyle or Chester.

    Otherwise, I really like this, especially the comment about the cake and then alluding back to fat camp.

    Good luck!

  3. I love this query. The story looks exciting and funny. I agree with Holly about the word 'Wrong!' It sort of pounced out at me and didn't seem to fit. Maybe just say "No way! instead.

    I also agree with Melody. Use Chester's name in those other places. Then you have a perfect query. IMO.

    Good luck with it.

  4. I think you have a great idea for a novel here. I know I'd read it. It seems to me like you managed to get a fair amount of voice in the query too, which is always hard. Good luck!


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