Friday, December 2, 2011

#28 YA cyberpunk fantasy: Harbinger *REDACTED*

TITLE: Harbinger
GENRE: YA Cyberpunk Fantasy

To save her brother from becoming a cybernetically enhanced Golem, 17-yr-old Kai must uncover the secrets of her dying city and defy its supernatural rulers.




Leigh Ann said...

Okay, seriously, if all you had was THE GENRE, I would buy this book. "Cyberpunk Fantasy?" YES PLEASE.


Logline: You had me at the word "Golem." Might be because I'm a Jew. But that's neither here nor there. :)

There is amazing, AMAZING worldbuilding going on here. And the foreshadowing blows my mind. I already want to dig in and confirm my suspicions about what's gonna go down here.


YKL said...

Mmm, great genre description. I could sink my teeth just into that. And then there's the logline! To be honest, you could've left it at a fragment -- "To save her brother from becoming a cybernetically enhanced Golem" -- and I would've been hooked.

I was taken aback by the first sentence; to be honest, having an anthropomorphic Death is a slight minus with me (it's been done so many times in fantasy), but the high-rise penthouse snared me, along with the lovely figurative language ("cut the skyline like a blade").

I had some middling issues with transition throughout this excerpt. The second paragraph feels a bit unfinished. I couldn't quite pinpoint was was the unsettling element: the vadverts? (In a futuristic society, I'd expect massive advertisements to be shrugged off -- unless they were for certain products that people like the protag couldn't comprehend.) The Tournament? You really leave details on the latter hanging, then jump to the "White Court" nomenclature.

It's a great name, but then I got thrown off again by "It was just as well. We'd have to call it the mostly-white court." I wasn't sure how this fit in -- are you saying would it be "mostly-white" if the residents weren't afraid of dirt and let some in?

And then you jump to the messenger bag strap. It's a nice tactile detail, and it gives a sense of purpose (she's carrying something). But it's a bit abrupt, and although it's clear she's passing through the gates, you leave it completely unknown until a couple paragraphs later from which side she's crossing.

Great setting and a fascinating setup; I'd just like to see the opening move a little more seamlessly, but I'm definitely hooked.

Amanda G. said...

Really interesting premise and intro, but I'm always cautioning fantasy writers about too many proper nouns up front. It's confusing and I know you're worldbuilding, but you can slow down and let us cobble together the meanings of these places/names first. I'd still read on!

Anonymous said...

I also stumbled on the mostly-white Court reference. Didn't quite get the joke until YKL explained it.

Probably nothing to really think about, but I'll just throw it out there.... When I see District paired with some sort of game (Tournament) and a heavy-handed leader on the first page of a futuristic-style novel, I tend to think of another well-known book... Might separate those elements out a little more.

Kalen O'Donnell said...

I want to say so many things about this amazing amazing story that I have had the privilege of reading, but I shan't! Because I can't!

Just know....its really as good as it sounds.

Alaina said...

Logline: I like it. It clearly states what the stakes are, what will happen if she fails, and why she's trying.

Excerpt: I was a bit confused. I thought Death was the name of a building at first, and I'm really not too sure what's going on. You only hooked me at 'The strap of my messenger bag.' Before that, not so much.

I'd read another few pages before deciding if I'd put this back or not, because it's hard to tell here.

PCB said...

Wait a minute, there are districts, a tournament, and a protagonist named "Kai." I have to agree with an earlier commentator; these naming conventions and concepts are too similar to those in the The Hunger Games for me to read further. Give your ideas unique names, and I'd be much more tempted to keep reading, because I like just about anything starting with an executioner!

Best of luck!

Jessica Leake said...

So exciting about the offer!! I remember this one from WriteOnCon, so it's SO wonderful to see it get snatched up! :D

Tamara said...

Congratulations on the offer! So exciting!

Lyla said...

Congrats on the offer! YAY! :)

erica m. chapman said...

Awesome!!! Gotta love to see this. CONGRATS!!!!!

Tara said...

Congratulations on the offer!! The one thing better than being in the Baker's Dozen Auction...having to pull your entry because you've already found your agent. =)

Dorothy Dreyer said...

Congrats on the offer! Love seeing that!

Ann Bedichek Braden said...


So SO happy for you!!!

Lindsay said...

Huge congrats on the offer. :D

Leigh Ann said...


*runs around*

*freaks out*

*hugs computer monitor*

*giggles and stamps*

AHHHHH THIS IS AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monica B.W. said...

That's AWESOME!!

I was just about to comment on this one after reading it yesterday, and now I'm so happy to see this!! YAY!
Congrats, Lori!! <33

Karen Akins said...


Lori M. Lee said...

Thanks so much, everyone ^^

Amanda Sun said...

Awesome! Congrats!!

Sarah Shumway said...

I have never been pitched Cyberpunk Fantasy! Congrats on your agent offer, and best of luck. I'll save any comments I might have made for your agent, should she one day pitch your ms to me!

Alaina said...

Huge congrats on the offer! I hope it works out!