PW #353: Young Adult West-African Fantasy (Own Voices): CHILDREN OF BLOOD AND BONE

Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor: Ashley Hearn
Mentee: Tomi Adeyemi
Title: CHILDREN OF BLOOD AND BONE
Category/Genre: Young Adult West-African Fantasy (Own Voices)
Word Count: 105,000

Pitch:

With magic, Zélie’s family could stand against the royal guard.

Her people wouldn’t live in fear.

Her mom wouldn’t have hanged from that tree.

Years after the king wiped magic out of Orïsha, Zélie has one chance to bring it back. To do so, she’ll have to outwit/outrun the crown prince, who’s hell-bent on erasing magic for good.

AVATAR THE LAST AIRBENDER meets BLACK LIVES MATTER.

Excerpt:

When I think of her I think of rice.

When Mama was around, the hut always smelled of jollof rice.

I think about the way her face glowed like the summer sun, the way her smile made Dad come alive.

I hear the myths she would read to me at night. Zain’s spurts of laughter when they played abgön in the mountain park. Dad’s cries as they put the rope around her neck. Her screams as they dragged her into the dark.

The incantations that spewed from her mouth like lava—the magic of death that left her astray.

I think about the way her corpse hung from that tree.

I think about the king who took her away.

CHAPTER ONE

Pick me.

It’s all I can do not to scream. I dig my nails into the marula oak of my staff and squeeze to keep from fidgeting. Beads of sweat drip down my back, but I can’t tell if it’s from the morning heat or my heart slamming against my chest. Week after week I’ve been passed over.

Today can’t be the same.

I tuck a lock of snow-white hair behind my ear and do my best to sit still. As always, Mama Agba makes this selection grueling, staring at each girl just long enough to make us squirm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Heather Cashman

With a Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry, the lab reports always lacked the fantastical element Heather's imagination demands. Hypotheses turned into taglines and novels, so she's going back to college for a Creative Writing degree. Her novels range from Epic Fantasy to Contemporary Speculative Fiction, she dabbles in picture books, and is currently seeking representation. ~Member SCBWI

Share This Post On

33 Comments

  1. I’m mesmerized. Please send the full manuscript in word format (with query) to slieberman (at) janklow (dot) com — and please note pitch wars in the subject line. Thank you!

    Post a Reply
  2. Wow! This packs an emotional punch. I would love to read. Please send as a Microsoft word doc to brent[at]triadaus[dot]com with “Pitch Wars request” in the subject line and your query pasted in the body of the message. Cannot wait to read!

    Post a Reply
  3. I absolutely must have this! Please send the full manuscript (as well as a synopsis if you have one) to lauren@triadaus.com with “Pitch Wars: [YOUR TITLE]” as the subject line. Please also include your query in the body of the email. I look forward to reading!

    -Lauren Spieller, TriadaUS

    Post a Reply
  4. I’m loving this voice! I’d love to take a look at the full manuscript. Please send it to cmcdonald@maassagency.com, along with the query letter and synopsis, and include “Pitch Wars” in the subject line. Thanks!

    Caitlin McDonald
    Donald Maass Literary Agency

    Post a Reply
  5. I’d love to take a look at the full manuscript. Please send it as a word attachment to querycaitie (at) lizadawson (dot) com with your query in the email, with the PitchWars request in the subject.

    Post a Reply
  6. I’d love to read more of this! Please send your first 50 pages as a Word document to querylindsay@emeraldcityliterary.com. Include Pitch Wars in the subject line along with your query in the body of your email.

    Thanks!

    Post a Reply
  7. I am so upset I can’t read more right now! I love this so much. Please send the full manuscript to Suzie at newleafliterary dot com with the query pasted into the first page and REQUESTED PITCH WARS in the subject line. Thanks!

    Post a Reply
  8. I’d love to take a look at the full manuscript! Please send your query pasted in the email and the full manuscript attached in a word document to: rena (at) thedeborahharrisagency (dot) com

    Thanks!

    – Rena Rossner
    The Deborah Harris Agency

    Post a Reply
  9. Every spring I teach a class on mythology and legends at the University of Pittsburgh, so this projects sounds so perfectly up my alley. Please, send the full as an MSWord attachment to uwe@triadaus.com.

    Post a Reply
  10. This sounds GREAT! I’d love to keep reading! Please send the full manuscript attached as a Word document to queries@parkliterary.com with “Pitch Wars – Pete Knapp” in the subject. Looking forward to reading! – Pete Knapp

    Post a Reply
  11. WOW! Love this starter and can’t wait to read more – please send your query and full manuscript to me at joan @ emliterary.com!

    Post a Reply
  12. Tomi, I have been looking forward to this entry for *literally* months! I’m so excited to check it out now! Please send your full manuscript to brooks@thebentagency.com as a Word attachment, along with your query and a synopsis (if available) with “PITCH WARS: CHILDREN OF BLOOD AND BONE” in the subject of your email. Thanks, and I can’t wait to dive in!

    Post a Reply
  13. Tomi, I am so, so excited to read this! Please send a query (in the body of the email) plus the full manuscript as a Word doc attachment to patricia@marsallyonliteraryagency.com, and make sure to put “Pitch Wars Request” and the title in the subject line.

    Can’t wait to read more!

    Post a Reply
  14. I’d love to read ore of this! Please send me the full as an attached word doc, to Querymandy@emeraldcityliterary.com. (Lindsay and I both requested this, and that’s okay– we’ll chat about it internally.) Thanks! -M

    Post a Reply
  15. Hi! I’d love to take a closer look at your work. Please send your query letter in the body of an email and attach the full manuscript as a word or pdf doc. You can reach me at lgarrison (at) thegernertco (dot) com. Thank you!

    ~Logan Garrison Savits
    The Gernert Company

    Post a Reply
  16. Hi Tomi,

    I loved this! I have to keep reading! Can you please send the complete manuscript – as either a Word Doc or PDF – to victoria.queries@irenegoodman,com with “pitchwars” somewhere in the subject line!

    Thank you so much!

    Victoria

    Post a Reply
  17. This sounds outstanding. I would love to see the full manuscript! Please send it to melissa@rpcontent.com as a Word doc or PDF with your query in the body of the email, and be sure to put “Pitch Wars” in the subject line.

    Thanks!

    Melissa Nasson
    Rubin Pfeffer Content

    Post a Reply
  18. Completely standout–I love this premise and your writing! I’d love to see the full manuscript. Please send it + query + synopsis to LBiagi (at) jvnla (dot) com, with Pitch Wars in the subject line. Excited to read!

    Post a Reply
  19. I’d love take a look at the full manuscript! Please feel free to send it along as a word document to andrea [at] harveyklinger.com with “PitchWars Requested Manuscript” in the subject line. Thanks! I’m looking forward to reading.
    best,
    Andrea Somberg
    Harvey Klinger Inc.

    Post a Reply
  20. Whoa. Hi Tomi! I’d love to read this full manuscript now. However, if for some reason this, the 29th request, somehow gets lost in all the future correspondence, I have tremendous faith I’ll be able to pick up a hardcover copy of CHILDREN OF BLOOD AND BONE next year in a bookstore. But as I said, it’d be a thrill to read an early copy. Email: ASlater@tridentmediagroup.com.
    Best,
    Alex

    Post a Reply
  21. Wow…just wow. This sounds absolutely amazing!! I’d love to take a look at the full manuscript! Please feel free to send it along with query, synopsis and chapter summaries to nicole [at] goldenwheatliterary [dot] com.

    Thanks!

    Nicole

    Post a Reply
  22. Tomi–This had my heart caught in my throat. I’d absolutely love to see more, please do send your query letter and the full manuscript as a word doc attachment to annie@foliolit.com with subject line: PitchWars request. Cannot wait to be swept away.

    Post a Reply

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Life Update: 10/31 – 11/6 – Love, Caution - […] Tomi Adeyemi’s Pitch Wars entry finally went live for the agent round and it’s SO GOOD (CHILDREN OF BLOOD…
  2. This 23-Year-Old Nigerian Author’s Afrofuturist Novel Has Been Picked Up By Fox Studios – nbx.report - […] is the first installment in what will be a trilogy. Details on the book are scarce, but a pitch…
  3. Tomi Adeyemi's Novel, 'Children of Blood and Bone', Picked Up by Fox Studios | AFRICA ON THE RISE. - […] is the first instalment in what will be a trilogy. Details on the book are scarce, but a pitch…

Leave a Reply to Amanda Jain Cancel reply