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Monday, September 23, 2013

QueryCon 2013—#5 Pirate Jenny

Genre: YA historical
Name: Kathleen S. Allen

It's the year, 1533, King Henry VIII eagerly awaits the birth of what he hopes to be his first-born son by his new queen, Anne Boleyn. The special Tudor Rose brooch he had remade for her was stolen off his fastest naval ship, the Mary Rose. It was stolen by the ruthless Red Lady pirate.

Seventeen year old servant girl, Jenny is intrigued when a ship sails into the quiet harbor of Dowrlam, off the southern coast of England. She's even more intrigued when a woman, dressed as a pirate enters the inn and claims to be the mother who abandoned Jenny when she was an infant. She's not only Jenny's mother, she's also the Red Lady pirate. She has returned for two reasons: first, she wants the brooch back she had fastened to Jenny's cloak when she left her on the door stoop of the inn; and second, she wants Jenny to join her on her pirate ship and train to be a pirate.

Jenny refuses and so her mother orders her band of pirates to burn and pillage the village. Horrified, Jenny runs away only to be captured. When her mother kidnaps a young girl, Jenny must pretend to go along with her mother's scheme in order to protect the child.

PIRATE JENNY (60,000 words) is a YA historical novel based on the true story of the Red Lady pirate who was active during Henry VIII reign.


Angela Kelly said...

Interesting query! If I represented YA, I would definitely be interested in this query, but there's one confusing aspect in the query. The brooch. In the first paragraph, the Tudor Rose brooch was stolen in 1533. In the second paragraph, it says that Jenny was abandoned as an infant and a brooch was left on her cloak. We're going to assume that this is the same brooch that was stolen in the first paragraph. However, we see no indication that we've come forward in time from 1533, which is when the brooch was stolen. So, I'm going to wonder if we've come forward in time from 1533, if there's a continuity error regarding the brooch in the story, or if the brooch Jenny has is a twin of the Tudor Rose brooch and the Red Lady needs both brooches for some reason, perhaps to unlock a treasure chest of some sort.

Depending on the sample pages, I might request the full, if I represented YA, but the possibility of a continuity error would still be at the back of my mind, nagging me. Somewhere in the query you need to clarify whether we've come forward in time from 1533 because the opening of the query makes us think the entire story takes place in 1533. This is what gives rise to the questions of there being two brooches or of a continuity error. Other than that, it's an interesting query that would likely induce me to request more, depending on the sample sent with the query. Good Job!

abuckley23 said...

I have an Acquisitions Editor who I think would really enjoy this. We'd love to see a query and some sample pages. Query us at http://curiosityquills.com/submission-guidelines/author-submissions/ and make sure to include that you were referred through Unicorn Bell.