Wednesday, July 13, 2011

July Secret Agent #31

GENRE: YA mystery

Paris, France
The place I least wanted to be
Day one of my summer vacation

As I dragged my little sister out the Charles de Gaulle Airport, a lady on the sidewalk by the taxi stand screamed. “Thief! Stop him! He's got my purse.”

My sister tugged on my shirt. “What's happening, Dave?”

"Hold on, Ruthie, let me find out."

The screamer turned out to be a blonde lady in a purple suit on the sidewalk by the taxi stand. She pointed at a kid running through the drizzle, a s***-eating grin on his face. He stole something and
nobody caught him.

"Look out, Ruthie. Stay here and watch the bags."

The thief looked about my age, seventeen. He wore scruffy clothes that bagged around his skinny body. A lady's purse under his arm, he headed toward me, zigzagging, jumping over luggage, and holding his
other arm out to push bystanders away.

“Stop him somebody, please!” The lady pointed at the thief.

Nobody else made a move, so I decided it was up to me. I dashed across the cement, grabbed him around the shoulders and neck, and tackled him. Down we went, making a loud thud when we hit the

The crowd clapped and cheered as I yanked the purse out of his hands. In my head, I was defensive end, Osi Umenyiora, of the New York Giants, holding up a recovered fumble.


  1. I liked it! The scene was set up well, with Dave and Ruthie and the woman whose bag had been stolen. Ruthie being there obviously presents an obstacle; Dave can't abandon his little sister(?), but he feels the need to stop this wrong he sees going on. I would like to know exactly why he feels that need. If it's more than just "no one else did anything so it was up to me." Also, this sentence, "He stole something and nobody caught him," could be stronger, give us more sense of the MC's voice. Maybe something like, "He thought he was going get away with it, the scumbag." Not necessarily those words, but something more indicative of the MC's state of mind. I thought you did a really nice job here :)
    Ninja Girl

  2. A pure and simple setup to what could be a fantastic story! Although I have no idea what "The Fogged Mirror" is going to be about, I already have a good sense of Dave and Ruthie's personalities. I'd read on a bit more, if nothing else, to find out why Dave doesn't want to be in Paris.

    Good luck!

  3. I think the scene is very exciting, but I think you have some unnecessary phrases. Look at what you can delete and still understand the story. Since the scene is intense keeping out redundant sentences will make it stronger.

    Good job! I'd keep reading. Loved the opening.

  4. I loved the chapter title, actually. That drew me in immediately.

    The scene is great, but I felt that the dialogue wasn't so authentic. I have never heard a teenager say to his annoying little sister, "Hold on, Ruthie, let me find out." Especially when he was annoyed at the situation he was in in the first place. He would more likely ignore her, then tell her to watch the bags.

    So make sure that your voice is authentic and that you take out unnecessary exposition.

  5. I didn't think the dialogue worked. If someone is screaming "Stop thief! He stole my purse." it seems evident what happened. Where is Dave going to go, to go see? WHo is he going to ask questions of?.

    And then I would have liked to have known his motivation for stopping the thief. Nobody else was doing anything doesn't seem a strong enough reason.

    I really liked the last two pargs. They came off as real and we got a bit of emotion out of Dave (him feeling like a football player) Perhaps work a bit more emotion into the rest of the piece. I think that's what's missing.