B7: YA SPECULATIVE THRILLER: THE DARKNESS RISES
Title: The Darkness Rises
Age Category: Young Adult
Genre: Speculative Thriller
Word Count: 68,000
Pitch: After fourteen people die because Whitney saves the wrong man, she vows to stop rescuing people. But when someone sets out for revenge, Whitney must find the courage to save one last life—her own.
First 250 Word of Manuscript:
The Dallas night was like a sweaty palm clamped over my mouth, but a welcome improvement from the chaos inside—the rooms were too cramped and the thudding bass made even my eyeballs rattle. At least I could hear myself think outside.
Near the fence, two guys passed a cigarette back and forth, studying me over the rims of their Coors Light cans. Heat crept down my neck when I saw them whispering, eyes still trained on me.
“Relax.” Marissa grabbed my arm like I might make another escape attempt. She wasn’t too far off the mark. “They’re just checking you out.”
As if in answer one of them stepped closer, curls of smoke snaking out of his nostrils.
“You here to take our car keys away?” He drawled, offering a smirk before taking a large swallow of beer. I couldn’t remember his name, but I vaguely recalled wrestling a set of keys from him at a party last year after I’d seen him stumbling toward the exit.
“No.” I answered flatly, hiding my hands behind my back so he wouldn’t see them ball into fists. “I don’t do that anymore.”
The backdoor opened, spilling music into the yard as several more people escaped the stuffy house. I turned, grateful for the distraction. Beau Gunter led the pack, a pitcher of his infamous punch in one hand and a stack of cups in the other.
“Ladies!” He grinned at us from under a low-slung hat brim. “I couldn’t help but notice your empty hands, and I can’t have empty hands at my party.”