HH Com 36

'Destination Uncertain' is an 80,000 word crime novel set in London.

When an eight year old runs into her office demanding the police, Stella thinks it’s a joke. When he tells her he’s been rescued after a kidnap attempt she thinks it’s fantasy. So when he asks her to take him home she agrees, thinking it should be simple.

Until it becomes clear that being guardian angel to this particular child requires not just faith and hope, but a flaming sword as standard. And that for Hugh, home could be where he’s most at risk.

For now, Stella’s all that stands between the child and his pursuers. Can she evade them long enough to clear a path to the truth? The pair go looking for answers. Their journey is perilous; their destination uncertain.

The difference between what works and what doesn't is best illustrated when I rewrite your first paragraph.

Eight-year-old Hugh runs into Stellas office calling for the police. She thinks it's a game or a joke. He says he's been rescued from a kidnap attempt. She agrees to take him home.

Of course, there is no discernable logic to this because I must tell you if an 8 year old ran into my office I'd be on the blower for the coppers faster than you can say "Rugrats not allowed".

And "flaming sword as standard" WTF???

Think again.


Anonymous said...

I didn't have any problem with the first paragraph, but I don't know what the second and third paragraphs mean. Flaming sword? Why is he most at risk at home? Who's pursuing him? The truth about what? Answers about what? Journey towards what or away from what?

What's the book about?

Anonymous said...

Some angels were said to carry flaming swords. Sometimes just as a battle flag or 'standard', sometimes to actually use on the bad guys.

It implies the kind of guardian angel who does the peace, love and harmony bit but also kicks a bit o' butt...

Though I agree that line was probably a tad overwritten for a hook.

(Not that I should comment on other people's stuff. Still quaking in my ... umm... bare feet... waiting for my turn to be shredded.)

Anonymous said...

Aww...I liked it. I mean, badly worded hook, but the story sounds interesting...

Dave Fragments said...

I'm with Miss Snark, in this day and age, a strange child alone and panicked or alone and in distress of some sort, is an immediate call to the police.
You need a McGuffin to make anything else work.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like Grisham's "The Client."

Anonymous said...

This reminded me of John Grisham's The Client

HawkOwl said...

Pronouns. Antecedents. There is a system to them and you haven't mastered it. It took me a while to figure out you're not talking about a female eight-year-old with an office of her own.

Anonymous said...

Too far fetched. Does not make sense and I'm offended. Just because I am persuing a career in psychology. I will be working with kids who will run to my office and ask for help and I will not think it is fantasy. Also, by my legal right, they will not go on a journey that "is perilous; their destination uncertain."

I believe some people write to put words to paper but, don't understand the story has to be believable. As the reader must make some kind of connection.

I'm sorry.

Stacia said...

Yep, agreeing with Miss Snark and Dave. There better be a good reason this woman thinks he's telling tales, because her refusal to take the kid seriously makes her instantly unsympathetic. Even if it's "Town boy-who-cried-wolf Hughie runs into the office..."

Aside from that the story doesn't sound too bad.

Virginia Miss said...

Who rescued the boy from the kidnappers, or did he escape?
Why does she agree to take him home instead of calling his parents or the police?
What happens to make her think he's in danger?

Anonymous said...

The flaming sword line was very clever, and is my favorite, actually!