Fall Fiction Fest, ENGRAM, YA Thriller

Title: ENGRAM

Genre: YA Thriller

Wordcount: 79,000

How did you fall for writing: When I was ten years old, I wrote a book of bedtime stories for my younger sister, and I haven’t stopped writing since!

Query:

Dear Agent,

Seventeen-year-old Elle is the snarky, wise-beyond-her-years daughter (and unofficial apprentice) of the legendary Max Brooks, a semi-retired CIA operative. When they’re attacked on a routine job, Elle learns that her dad has been keeping secrets from her. Big ones. Her name isn’t really Elle Brooks. She wasn’t really born in America. And when her father brought her and her brother over from the small European country of Auldwynne, he wasn’t running toward the American dream—he was running away. From everything.

In an effort to uncover the truths her father tried so hard to bury in Auldwynne, Elle accepts an assignment forced on them by their attackers: kill the crown prince of Auldwynne and his two sisters. They plan to kidnap the royals instead, intending to keep them safe from Nicholas Price, the man who hired them. But their plan goes awry, resulting in Max’s disappearance. That’s when Elle discovers that the assassination plot goes much deeper than just politics.

When Elle and the royals find the remnants of an old experiment, terminated due to ethical concerns, they realize that it isn’t as abandoned as it seems. It’s all connected—the experiment, the assassination, and Max’s secrets. But some secrets would be better left buried—and digging them up might mean giving Price exactly what he wants.

ENGRAM, a YA thriller, is complete at 79,000 words. ENGRAM will appeal to fans of Ally Carter’s EMBASSY ROW series.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

First 250 Words:

“Marcus said the shooter would be up there.” Dad points out the window of our favorite waffle place and across the street to an older building halfway down the block. “The senator and his son will be walking back to their hotel after an official state dinner.”

I take another bite of waffle and lean across the table, craning my neck to see past the awning. The building Dad is pointing at looks like an old factory—it’s made of drab gray stone and half the windows are completely gone. “Walking?”

“Walking. Their hotel is only two blocks from the banquet center, and their car is going to mysteriously break down as they’re leaving.”

“They got all this from an anonymous tip?” It’s almost not a question. Dad’s told me stories from his days at the CIA, and usually when they get a tip, it’s a tiny, almost useless piece of information. Then they have to dig and extrapolate and hope they can get there in time to save someone’s life. Sometimes they do. Sometimes they don’t.

It’s no wonder my dad retired a few years ago.  Not being able to save everyone had taken its toll on him.

“Here, let me play you the audio. She called the police, but they transferred her over almost immediately.” He grabs his phone, hands me an earbud, and clicks a few buttons. I stick the earbud in my ear, and a moment later, a woman’s frantic voice comes through the speaker.

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