Query Letter: How Black is the Shadow

I’m in the process of writing my query letter for How Black is the Shadow. I’d appreciate any and all feedback. If you have none, I hope the letter at least makes you excited to read my next novel. Here you are:

Dear Agent:

When Kat’s brother falls through the ice of a frozen river, she vows never to return home until she can find a relic to bring her brother back to life.

Devastated, Kat leaves her farmhouse in the dead of winter with a head full of fireside stories to guide her and a horn of her brother’s ashes to keep her company. Despite her stubborn attitude and sharp tongue, Kat earns a spot in the house of a king by saving the eldest prince from his servants’ treachery. The prince turns out to be a prick, but Kat finds a sorceress and a famous warrior to aid her as she investigates her stories of rebirth. However, Kat soon discovers life in the castle is but a series of plots and counterplots. Of all the lords and ladies Kat meets, the majority will betray or desert her in the end.

Although a peasant girl when she starts chasing after legends, Kat grows into a sorceress worthy of legend. All she wants is a normal life with her brother and her family, but the road changes her. She must become something more to revive her brother and avoid the nobles’ destructive ambitions, because they won’t just sacrifice Kat for their betterment, but anyone so long as they take power.

HOW BLACK IS THE SHADOW is a 130,000-word high fantasy novel. It combines the deceitful, history-rich environment of A Song of Ice and Fire with the individual experience and personal quest of recovering what was lost of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.

All the best,

Andrew Layden


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