Wednesday, September 23, 2015

September Secret Agent #2

Title: The Miller's Daughter
Genre: NA Paranormal Romance

The moonless night is my ally.

I shove the canoe toward the river over tall grasses, then pebbles, the plastic boat grating against stones. The Cinderblock, rope and oars inside the vessel slide forward, scraping the boat bottom when I stop.

I pant and my heart pounds at the effort. Almost there. Every day, exertion becomes a little harder. I skitter to the front of the canoe and tug it under a sprawling shrub, over the top of discarded condoms, past empty beer cans. The branches, tender with leaf buds, conceal the canoe.

I drop down onto the rocky shore to catch my breath. The river water moves like sludge. Eddies writhe and swirl around the concrete bridge supports. The breeze lifts what’s left of my hair, the thin, lifeless strands whipping sideways. I wrinkle my nose as I breathe in the stink of algae and rotting fish.

My joints ache. I rub my shoulder and pain ripples over me. The tumours beneath my skin are larger than they were yesterday. And this damned hunger is getting worse by the hour. I have to slough off this body and its unravelling DNA. If I wait too long, the hunger and instinct will override my plans. If I don’t take Maggie as my victim, it will be someone else. Resisting is impossible. God knows I’ve tried.

I have no age.

I’m in a body that is thirty-five years old.

Thirty-five was a mistake.


  1. The first sentence=swoon. Love it!!

  2. The first sentence=swoon. Love it!!

  3. Intriguing and suspenseful: I definitely want to read more. I was a tad bit lost with the first sentence, but your writing is full of imagery. I like that your use of sensory perception pulls me into the scene, as if I'm actually there, witnessing it all.

    The end of your first page captivated me with a hook so strong it won't likely release me. I'm dying to find out more about the tumors, DNA, why your MC must take Maggie as her next victim and how prior attempts of resisting failed. The suspense is spectacular. I'm on the edge of my seat, hungry for more and that's what a great first page is supposed to accomplish.

    You've done a fabulous job of creating mystery and unanswered questions that left me eager to find out why she is inside a 35 year old body. Why was it a mistake? How will Maggie's body be any different? Why must she live this way? What's wrong? I'm hooked and I want to read this book.

  4. You did a great job with the imagery in this opening. I can feel the character's pain and panic. However, I think you rushed things a bit when you mentioned Maggie. Instead of telling it straight out, maybe have the character's thoughts drift to her and the hunger slip through.

    I'd read more. Good luck!

  5. My thought was that instead of telling us it's a moonless night, you show it as she goes about her business. If you make reference to the dark in your descriptions of what she's doing, it'll add mood and a bit of a creep factor.

    I pant and my heart pounds with the effort - This seems backwards to me. Wouldn't panting for breath ease her pounding heart, already pounding because of her efforts? I don't know, but that sentence just seems off.

    When she sits on the riverbank, she tells us what she sees. But it's a moonless night and she has no light. Could she see the eddies and how the river is moving? Perhaps, instead, describe the sounds of the river and what they might mean.

    I wrinkle my nose as I breathe in the stink of algae and rotting fish. -- turn this sentence around. I breathe in the stink of rotting algae and fish and wrinkle my nose. Action before reaction.

  6. Nice opening.You managed to introduce interesting questions that make me want to turn the page. I particularly like how your last three lines tie into the first line.

  7. That’s a fantastic opening line and I love the atmosphere in this. It does walk a line for me where the imagery is concerned and I’d just caution you to make sure you do move the action forward and don’t get completely caught up in overly-descriptive sections all the time. That being said, however, I really love the feel in this and the last three lines are definitely a great hook and leave me wanting more. Well done!

  8. I also got caught up in the awkward sentence: I pant and my heart pounds with the effort. That is saying the effort of panting is making her heart that really what you mean to say?