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PW #116: Adult Supernatural Mystery/Suspense: THE MADDENING OF HOLLY ROBIN

Tuesday, 31 October 2017  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor Name: Derek Chivers

Mentee Name: Carolyne Topdjian


Category: Adult

Genre: Supernatural Mystery/Suspense

Word Count: 78,000 words


RIVERDALE meets HIMSELF by Jess Kidd

Hiding a scandal which threatens her career and reputation, sociologist Julia Saint Hilaire flees to the sleepy subarctic village of Fort Parry. An eerie encounter with Holly Robin—local bad-girl, missing and presumed dead—leads Julia to discover that like herself, this town has secrets it wants buried. Soon Julia is entangled in a deadly and nightmarish hunt for the truth: either one of the town’s many suspicious residents is responsible, or something far older and darker is at work.


Sunday, July Second

As she watched the taxi disappear down the laneway, Julia Saint Hilaire had one thought: I hate it here already. She slapped a mosquito off her arm and reminded herself this was temporary, just a few months until the lashing tongues eased and her reputation was restored. She could tough it out.

She took a deep breath flavored of fish fry and woodsmoke. Double-checking the house number, she rapped the doorknocker—an austere lion’s head. More fitting a castle than a cottage, the heavy brass emitted an echo through the hollow of the house. A faint voice announced someone coming, and Julia tightened the straps of her rucksack. No going back. The subarctic tree line was too thick, too vast to cross even without snow, and on her meager budget Julia couldn’t afford cab fare to the airfield, much less a return flight to Toronto.

Ten-thirty p.m. and the sun was only now tucking behind the horizon, but after several anxious nights and thirteen hours of travel, nothing would keep Julia from sleep. Not the stubborn daylight. Not the chill of the breeze or symphony of insects. Now that she’d reached her destination—Fort Parry, Manitoba, a fishing hamlet with a population under one thousand—she was done moving. Almost.



Filed: PW Entries

  • This entry made me smile. I’d love to see your query in the body of an email, along with the full manuscript and a synopsis (both attached). Please also include a link to this entry. You can send your materials to lauren@triadaus.com. I look forward to reading!


  • Heather Flaherty says:

    Hi there! I would love to see more of this!

    Please send:
    – Query + 10 pages pasted in the body of the email
    – Attach FULL ms as well!
    – with subject line: PW ADULT + Title

    to: flahertyqueries@thebentagency.com

    Thank you so much!

    Heather Flaherty (The Bent Agency)

  • Natascha Morris says:

    Hi Carolyne,

    I want to know more! Please query me at QueryMe.online/1067/PitchWars2017. Thank you!

    Natascha Morris
    BookEnds Literary

  • I was super intrigued by your pitch and sample and definitely want to read more of this!! Please send me your query and first 100 pages, with the subject “PITCHWARS REQUEST,” to carrie(at)prospectagency(dot)com. Thank you and excited to see more!

  • Please send me the full manuscript! Include query letter or brief synopsis as first page of the manuscript and email it as a .doc or .docx attachment to querykristin@nelsonagency.com. In the subject line, please write REQUESTED PITCH WARS + the title of the manuscript. Looking forward to reading more!

  • Please send me the full manuscript and a summary (spoilers ok!) in Word format to kimberly@browerliterary.com. for the subject line, please write PITCH WARS: Title Name. Can’t wait to read!

  • Penelope Burns says:

    Hi Carolyne,

    I am a Riverdale Junkie and would love to see more of this! Can you send the full to penelope@gelfmanschneider.com with your query in the body of the email and #PitchWars and title in the subject line? Thanks so much, looking forward to reading!


  • Joanna says:

    This sounds awesome. Loving the setting, too – cold Canadian towns hold a special place for me.Please email me at queryjoanna@nelsonagency.com In the subject line, write PitchWars and the title of your project. This will help ensure that your email isn’t accidentally deleted or caught in our spam filter. Please include your query along with your manuscript. Thanks!

  • I’d love to see more! Please submit your query, synopsis, and first 50 pages to https://querymanager.com/query/inklings_whitley/PitchWars. I can’t wait to dive in!

  • Amelia Appel says:

    Hi Carolyne! I would LOVE to read more of this. Could you please send the first 50 pages and a full synopsis to amelia@triadaus.com? And please include “Pitch Wars” in the subject line. Thank you so much!

  • Yay! I’m a Manitoba girl. I’m no longer in Canada, but a part of me will always be there. 🙂 I love this premise and am curious about the secrets the town wants buried, especially if it’s something dark.

    Please send the full manuscript to Lynnette@theseymouragency.com, attached as a Word document with the query as the first page. Put “Pitch Wars” and your title in the subject line. Please also include a brief synopsis as a separate document. Thanks! Can’t wait to read!

    Lynnette Novak
    The Seymour Agency

  • Ann Leslie Tuttle says:

    I would love the chance to read this. Please send the synopsis and full manuscript to atuttle@dystel.com. Thank you

  • Hi, Carolyne! I would love to see the full. Please send as an attachment (word doc preferred) to becky@bondliteraryagency.com. Include your query letter and be sure to put “Pitch Wars” in the subject line.


    Becky LeJeune
    Bond Literary Agency

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