I received an odd rejection letter the other day. Two handwritten notes from the agent on my query letter. The first one noted that most fantasy publishers are not willing to look at manuscripts over 100,000 words for first time authors. (mine is a little over 130k) The second said that if I could get a "rave review quote" from a published fantasy author who had read my book in its entirety the agent would consider reading my MS.
1) Is this an odd request?
2) How would one go about asking for a published author to read their work. The few authors I know in person I wouldn't ask because I've heard them talk about not reading MS for legal issues (a good practice in my mind). And it seems very presumptuous to ask someone you don't even know to read your MS for you.
2. you're right: you don't.
Nothing makes me scream like a wounded water buffalo faster than some unpublished, AGENTLESS author without a book deal asking my client to read something. I try to respond politely but "wtf? and no!" are hard to phrase any other way.
Query other agents.