12.16.2006

HH Com 65

Murdered just weeks before his wedding, Thomas Harling arrives in the afterlife, where God informs him that he is not yet worthy of Living. But there's hope. Should he wish to Live, he must spend the next century on earth (1860 to 1960), in service to God, as one of the Deaths of New York City. He goes. Being Death is difficult, but things are further complicated
when Thomas and his Death friend, Pierre, discover that an eight year-old girl can see them –– and that she is the daughter of Thomas's once-fiancee, Anna.

The years pass, and this friendship between a living girl and a dead man soon becomes a maelstrom of forbidden love: Thomas still harbors for Anna his old emotions, and yet Elizabeth has lit inside him strange new feelings and has professed for him unconditional love –– love Thomas has trouble believing is right. He knows that choosing either relationship will
jeopardize his eternal Life, but soon begins to wonder whether there is a reason Elizabeth can see Death.

As he works to solve this puzzle, he begins to uncover the black secret to his murder and his Living. Just as he is approaching the answer, the demon Legion arrives in Manhattan, determined to win Thomas's soul for Hell through Elizabeth. Thomas and Pierre both put their Lives on the side and fight to save Elizabeth's life.

So..this forbidden love thing is what...necrophilia?
Hard sell these days now that Judith Regan is clearing out her desk.

You've got both too much and too little. Too many words and plot points, and too little reason to care about any of these people. Focus on Thomas. Try writing the hook in HIS first person voice, then change to 3rd.

This trope however is old as the hills. You'll need something compelling to get me to read this.

13 comments:

Maureen McGowan said...

The forbidden love thing didn't read as necrophilia to me but pedophilia... I read that a friendship between a grown (okay, dead) man and an eight year old girl becomes a maelstrom of forbidden love. I'd reword... or rethink the plot if I read it correctly :-)

Anonymous said...

She is 19 by the time she admits her feelings. Thomas was 23 when he died and appears to be twenty-three to her. I did this hoping to avoid the whole pedophilia complication, obviously. Thanks for the comment!

jeanjeanie said...

I got both that she'd grown up and he's not a corpse, but I can see how it could be confusing on both points. It might not be a totally original idea but it's still right up my twisted alley. I'd consider taking this book home with me.

Emmy Voter said...

I think the "years pass" line means that Elizabeth grows into a woman before the forbidden love thing... As a fan of "Portrait of Jennie," "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir," and "The Time Traveller's Wife," not to mention "Doctor Who," I'm intrigued by the underlying premise, but the hook isn't clear and compelling yet.

ORION said...

Good one Miss Snark!
I HOWLED at the reference to Judith Regan...

Ryan Field said...

Juidth Regan...I thought the keyboard was safe today.

Anonymous said...

Can anyone give me some idea of what could make this compelling?

HawkOwl said...

It's derivative and unrelatable.

Anonymous said...

I'm not an expert but, paragraph 3 doesn't sound write or right.

Randy said...

I KNEW the Judith Regan remark would arrive, just couldn't predict where, when, or how. You never disappoint!

Steve Prosapio said...

follow miss snark's advice...write it in the 1st person and then shift to the 3rd!!!

Paul said...

"Dead like me." - HBO

Anonymous said...

Yes, I know.