Query feedback needed :)

Hi there! So I posted my original query a few days ago for my novel The Keeper. I did get some feedback, and with it, I then revised my query. I was hoping for some more feedback! Below is my new query.

If this is in the wrong topic, let me know so I can move it :slight_smile:

Thank you!

Set within the 18th century, our story takes us within the realm of the Black Forest, set beside the countryside of Germany.

Every two thousand years, a Keeper of the forest is chosen amongst two children half-mortal, and half immortal who will protect the Black Forest when they come of age on their twentieth year — keeping the balance of life and death amongst those who reside in the forest.

When the ceremony for choosing the Keeper takes place, our story brings us, Anabelle and Gallian. Two children bred from a human and elfin parent, one from love the other from greed. When Anabelle is chosen as Keeper of the forest, Gallian’s father, Balwin, tries to kill her as darkness consumes him. Fearing for her daughter, Isadora protects Anabelle and banishes Balwin to the nether regions. Ignoring the laws of the spirits, she masks Anabelle’s memories and steals her away to the human world.

Not knowing of her past, or the title she holds, Anabelle comes of age upon her twentieth birthday. She is thrust into a world she knows nothing of, with dreams of fey, and spirits, of masked balls and handsome strangers. On the occasion of her first ball, Anabelle will learn the truth of her past as Gallian returns, and so does the darkness as Balwin emerges from banishment, and has now returned to finish what he had begun fifteen years ago.

Anabelle must fight to regain the memories that were kept from her, and embrace that her choice between life and death may be the only key to the forest’s survival, as Balwin sets out to take over the forest, and kill Anabelle along with it. With an imminent threat looming over the Black Forest, Anabelle will have to test the strength and her devotion to those she loves, as well as the acceptance of her own innate powers.

Have you ever found your way between the pages of Pierce Brown, Edgar Rice Burroughs, or James Patterson? Then I believe you will enjoy the adventure of Anabelle, set forth within my novel The Keeper . A 76,000-word fantasy adventure centred on the eternal struggle between good and evil. The Keeper is a stand-alone novel but is followed by the continuing completed manuscript: The Black Forest.

I currently live in the Seattle area, and work as an Emergency Room Tech at the Evergreen Health Hospital, writing on my days off.

Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.

This is a bit… everywhere. I had trouble following it. Answer some questions for me:

  • Anabelle is half mortal, half immortal, right? Does she know that at the beginning of the story? Does she know she was chosen as Keeper?

  • Her childhood companion – is that the one she has come to love? Is this the other Keeper?

  • What does “protect the forest” mean? Protect it from what? What is Anabelle’s GOAL in the story?

  • Her father is the antagonist, right? What is he trying to stop her from doing and why?

  • What terrible thing will happen if she fails whatever she is trying to do?

  • What choice does she have to make to ensure success?


From what I was told, a query is only suppose to give some details away, sort of like reading the back of a book with just a smidge more. So a lot of the questions you asked I didn’t get into much because i don’t want to give it away. I left that for the synopsis lol but I will look into a couple of the things to clarify :slight_smile: thank you!

A query has to show the agent that the book has all the elements of a commercial novel. It is not a synopsis, but it is also NOT a back-of-the-book blurb. It does more than just entice them to read further.

And I understand that :slight_smile: which is why I said it’s like the back of the book but with more to it. So thank you for the feedback :slight_smile:

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I agree with @XimeraGrey

Your query leaves me with too many questions, but not because I’m intrigued by it.

I find it extremely confusing.

My first question was, “They choose only between two children?”

I suggest you write a very direct explanation of the story first and then add “bells and whistles” to try to lure an agent.

Who is your MC?
What does she want?
What is preventing her from getting what she wants?
What will happen is she fails to get it?


Thank you! I appreciate it :slight_smile:

Is Annabelle the Keeper?

Because you never actually state that she is.

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mhm, I just revised my entire query lol She is the keeper. Would you be interested in looking at it?

Post the updated one here on the thread.

I posted the updated one in place of the original one I posted. Its not super clean, but any ideas or suggestions can help :slight_smile:

That’s better – I have a better idea of what’s happening now. Give me some time to play with it a bit. I want to hone it down some.

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I feel like a kid that just got a cookie lol. I’m glad it’s better :slight_smile:
I appreciate you taking the time, really. So thank you :slight_smile:

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So this means they they choose between two children? Or that they choose a pair of children to work together as Keeper and a companion?

Lol the Keeper is chosen amongst two children, one will be Keeper and they will come of age on the twentieth birthday

That’s why I wrote it as “A Keeper will chosen” as singular :slight_smile:

The wording is still a bit odd. Why do they only have two candidates put forth? Is this info critical for the query? Can’t you just say the Keeper is chosen and Gallian’s father is jealous the honor wasn’t given to his son?

I took some liberties:

Every two thousand years, a Keeper is chosen to protect the Black Forest and preserve the balance of life and death amongst its denizens. Traditionally, the Keeper is selected at age five, trained, and then annointed into the role at age twenty. But this time, something went wrong.

When she was five years old, a half-human, half Elven child named Anabelle was chosen to be Keeper. But she has no memory of that event, no memory of the man who tried to kill her, no memory of what her mother did to protect her. Now on her twentieth birthday, she is thrust into an unfamiliar world with dreams of fey and spirits, of masked balls and handsome strangers.

As memories of her past return, so do old foes. Anabelle must fight to discover the heritage that has been held from her. She has to figure out whom she can trust and learn to control her new abilities, or the forest may lose its Keeper, and its people may not survive.

The Keeper is a 76,000 word Fantasy novel. The novel stands alone, but has series potential. I currently live in the Seattle area, and work as an Emergency Room Tech at the Evergreen Health Hospital, writing on my days off.

Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.

Is this, perchance, a YA Fantasy? It feels like YA.

BTW, I’m not living in Seattle currently, but I lived there until recently. Are you at the hospital in Kirkland? (I lived in Duvall.)


This is so much better!

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It’s still light on the specifics of what she’s trying to achieve and what will happen if she fails.