Query Critique: Dealers of Light
Dear Ms. Gardner:
Moira is a nurse practitioner with a hidden talent, one she knows little about- the ability to send healing energy she calls “Light” into others to augment healing. When one of her patients dies in her arms passing along not only a powerful gift, but a dire warning of doom, Moira discovers that cast into the darkness of society are people who thrive on “taking” the Light and torturing their victims.
When unexplained deaths linked to these Takers begin to escalate and one of her patients is targeted, Moira is drawn into the conflict and discovers the Takers have plans more sinister than murder. They plan to spread their evil and enslave the entire east coast using the catalyst of a dangerous, primordial artifact.
An attack on Moira is thwarted by the appearance of a mysterious, but alluring, stranger with ancient knowledge of Light. After she discovers this stranger is immortal, her growing attraction to him complicates her destiny even more. Moira must decide if she trusts him enough join his quest against the Takers and develop their relationship.
Moira’s path leads her to understand that following her heart is part of the talisman that will defeat the evil, but only if she learns how to use her gift in time.
DEALERS OF LIGHT is my paranormal romance of 92,000 words. I am seeking representation for this novel. I appreciate your time and kind consideration of this work.
I really like what I see here. I’ve made some comments below, but mostly the query just needs smoothing out. I was interested after I read the query, but then when I read the pages I was even more interested (and I was bummed when I came to the end of the sample pages!)
I like how the query starts right into the pitch for the novel. It’s a little over 200 words, a nice length. The last paragraph tells me the title, word count and genre, which is about all I need. If there’s no other pertinent information to share, might as well keep it short and sweet! This is a great example of a query that doesn’t try too hard to oversell, or to tell me all about the writer’s background and whatnot. It just lets the story sell itself. Love that!
Paragraph #1: The second sentence is awkward. First, it’s too long and should probably be two sentences. Then, the grammatical construction of “cast into the darkness of society are people…” is weak. Additionally, the reader won’t know what “cast into the darkness of society” even means. The first paragraph could be more powerful if the sentences were more smoothly constructed and avoided making the reader feel immediately confused.
Paragraph #2: This paragraph is better. It’s pretty good up to “the catalyst.” I have a feeling that again, you’ve either awkwardly constructed this sentence, or you’re wrongly using the word “catalyst.” Also, a “dangerous primordial artifact” is meaningless for the reader since we don’t know what it is or how it would be used. I’d actually cut it, and end the paragraph after “entire east coast.”
The rest of the query looks good! I requested a partial and look forward to reading this manuscript.
Readers: Your thoughts?
Rachelle Gardner, Literary Agent