I am seeking representation for my YA historical fantasy, complete at 84,000 words and titled THE RED AND THE SCARLET, which I have pitched as Les Miserables meets Mulan with a bounty-hunting Jo March as the heroine.
Eighteen-year-old mercenary Fyr has desperate aspirations. One: To keep her sickly brother Asaan alive after they escape racial massacre with only each other. Two: To get revenge on the one man she remembers taking part in the killings. And three, to fulfill an alleged prophecy she's stumbled upon.
The pseudo-historical script promises a supernatural race called "The Blue People" will conquer her native land. As a devoted sister and scarred survivor of near genocide, Fyr isn't about to let that happen, even if it means facing pirates, a tsunami, and her own arrest.
When Fyr and Asaan are arrested, by the same controversial politician she's vowed to kill, her plans are brought to a screeching halt. But instead of prosecuting the siblings, he invites them into his world. Trapped in the nobility's glittering society, Fyr's criminal dreams and her ideas about "Blue People" quickly become synonymous with scandal. She must fight self-doubt, racism, and a growing affection for her former enemy if she's to keep Asaan alive and safe, and escape before the Blue People attack.
THE RED AND THE SCARLET is a novel about siblings, culture clash, natural and political disasters, and pseudo-history. It is set on a fictional Slavic and Asian continent in the Napoleonic Era, and has sequel potential.
My name is Rachel Stevenson, and I am the winner of three Scholastic Gold Keys and two honorable mentions, all for science fiction and fantasy, and of a handful of local awards for short plays that were performed in my home city of Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Thank you for considering my work!
When Fyr was struck, and Vladyslav scarred, the world was shivering.
A blanket of clouds lay across the trinity of nations, and fingers of chill dragged into hearts and bones. Windows were shut, as were jackets. The breath of a hundred furnaces and the smoke of a thousand lungs rose to mingle with the skies.
Nevertheless, a handful of bourgeoisie gathered outside the Vlalonnan King’s palace, hoping to warm souls and fill their purses. Ignoring winter’s slaps on their cheeks and voices, they sang.
They looked up expectantly at the massive windows, where they hoped to see the king deigning to pay them mind, or preferably, cash. Instead, a snowflake drifted from above to their feet, as if a promise.
And their ancient carol soared to mist-dusted rooftops, where relentless wind snatched and swept it south to the Grassland Reserves, where “savages,” the tribal Yihhe, lived.
The same clouds hovered in their sky, but different joy in their hearts. One that gloried in their enemies’ disfigured heads, once unfortunate Vlalonnan pilgrims, staked around the camp.
Yihhe children, free of chores, ran out shrieking to catch snow in outstretched fingers and dark lashes. Fyr, about eight, stood on the edge of her people’s territory, daring to poke toes past the invisible boundary, near the dreadful heads. She glanced at them curiously, balancing her infant brother on her hip.While the other children held the bodiless things in fearful reverence, Fyr was grateful to them. From them had come the book in her hand.