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Pitch Wars Showcase

Please note: These are the entries for the Pitch Wars season beginning in 2021 and continuing through 2022. Please note that our Agent Showcase ends at 9:00 p.m. ET on Monday, February 14, 2022. Agents will not be able to leave comments requesting material after that time.
PW2019 MG #10: SHAD HADID AND THE ALCHEMISTS OF ALEXANDRIA (Contemporary Fantasy #OwnVoices)
George Jreije
Mentored by:
Adrianna Cuevas and Sarah Kapit
Book Title:
2019 Entries
MG Contemporary Fantasy #ownvoices
Word Count:


Twelve-year-old Shad enrolls in a school for alchemy, expecting to mix elixirs and craft charms. Instead, he arrives to find a mysterious group has seized control, banning alchemy from the curriculum. To save alchemy from being lost forever, he’ll need to fight back, even if it means teaming up with the one person he fears most―his school bully. The friendship and fantasy of Sal & Gabi, with an Arab twist.



There was no such thing as magic. 

But if there was, it would be the cakes on display through the bakery window. Freshly-baked namoura cakes, to be exact. Soft on the inside, crisp on the outside, and sugary sweet all over. Once I’d finished ogling those, I glanced over at the cheesy mannoush sandwiches. One of the windows had been opened and a rosewater scent wafted into my nose. The bakery, Halwa Heaven, was only a block from Rosemont Middle School. My last class had just gotten out, and holy cannoli was I glad to be done with pre-algebra.

Rows and rows of pastries were stacked on top of each other inside, all fresh and ready to be eaten. I wanted…no, I needed a taste.

Ready to lean in closer, a wet blob smacked the back of my neck. It stung as I reached around, wondering if a pigeon had just used my head for its toilet seat. My fingers ran across something gooey. I breathed in the rotten stench, examining the yellow-ish slime.

An egg? My stomach felt woozy while I flicked away the goo.

Laughter came from across the street. My throat burned at the sight of Sarah Decker, our middle school’s nastiest bully. She had her friends with her, too. All of them were in my sixth-grade class, and they were laughing.

Laughing at me.

24 responses to “PW2019 MG #10: SHAD HADID AND THE ALCHEMISTS OF ALEXANDRIA (Contemporary Fantasy #OwnVoices)”

  1. Rena Rossner says:

    Dear George,

    I’d love to read this full manuscript! Please send it attached as a word document to rena@thedeborahharrisagency.com

    All the best,

    Rena Rossner

  2. I’m intrigued by your premise, the alchemy, and I’m admittedly a sucker for a bakery setting. I’d love to read more! Can you please send your query, full manuscript and a complete, detailed synopsis to hilaryquery@ktliterary.com with “Pitchwars: Your Title” in the subject field. Can’t wait to dive in!

  3. Megan Manzano says:

    This sounds wonderful and I’d love to read more! Please send your query, synopsis, and first 30 pages to the following link: https://querymanager.com/query/MeganManzano/PitchWars

  4. Lauren Spieller says:

    Hi George! Great to see your entry here. I’d love to keep reading! May I please see the full manuscript + synopsis? It would also be great if you could include ‘Pitch Wars Request’ in the subject line. I look forward to hearing from you! 

    Lauren Spieller, TriadaUS Literary Agency

  5. Penny Moore says:

    Hi George,

    This sounds amazing! I’d love to read more. Please follow the directions on my query form and submit your MS here: QueryMe.online/LiteraryPenny/PitchWars2020. Thanks!

    All the Best,
    Penny Moore

  6. Alexandra Weiss says:

    Hi George! This sounds amazing and I’m eager to read more. Please send the full manuscript to me at http://queryme.online/AlexandraWeiss/PitchWars2019.

    Thanks so much!
    Alexandra Weiss
    The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency

  7. Jim McCarthy says:

    I’d love to have a look. Kindly send the manuscript along to me at jmccarthy@dystel.com. A Word attachment is most preferable if possible.


  8. Hannah VanVels says:

    This sounds great, and I’d love to take a look at a partial. Please upload the first 50 pages to: QueryMe.online/MarisaCorvisiero/PitchWars

    Hannah VanVels

  9. John Cusick says:

    Hi, George! I really love what I’ve read so far. Could you please send me a query and the first three chapters to john [@] foliolit.com? I’m excited to read more of your work.

  10. Melissa Edwards says:

    Hi George,

    I’d love to take a look. Please send the ms. as a doc to medwards at stonesong dot com.


    All best,

  11. Beth Phelan says:

    you already know i want this 🙂

    please send the full manuscript (word doc) to querybeth@galltzacker.com with your query letter in the body of the email and “pitch wars” in the subject line. looking forward to reading!

    <3 beth

  12. Peter Knapp says:

    Hi George,

    This sounds wonderful – I’d love to keep reading! Can you please send the full manuscript to queries@parkfine.com attached as a Word document, along with a 1-3 (or so) page synopsis if available (in the same document as the MS or attached as a separate doc is fine)? Please include a query letter in the body of the email and put “PitchWars Submission – Pete Knapp” in the subject of the email. Thanks so much for the opportunity, and I look forward to reading!

    With warm regards,

    Pete Knapp
    Park & Fine Literary and Media

  13. Caitlen Rubino-Bradway says:

    This looks great! I’d like to see the first 100 pages and a full synopsis, please. Send to crubinobradway AT lkgagency DOT com.

  14. Colleen Oefelein says:

    Hi George!

    What a great voice–I’d love to read the full! Please email me directly at colleen@adventurewrite.com. Paste your query and synopsis directly into the body and attach your full. Thanks and looking forward to reading!

    Colleen Oefelein
    Associate Agent
    The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency
    245 Park Avenue
    39th Floor
    New York NY 10167
    Facebook: Colleen Oefelein
    Twitter: @eerie_o

    Celebrating 19 years of making dreams come true!

  15. Ashley Blake says:

    Hello George, I’d love to read more of this! If you’d like, send the full manuscript to ashley@reesagency.com and put QUERY PITCH WARS in the subject. Hope to hear from you soon!

  16. Marlo Berliner says:

    Enjoying this and I’d love to read more! Please send the full with Pitchwars Adult in the subject line to marlo.jdlit@gmail.com. Looking forward to reading!

  17. Mary Cummings says:

    I’d be happy to read more. Please send the first approx 25 pp and final approx 25 pp as a Word doc, with a synopsis and some bio info, to b.amster.kidsbooks@gmail.com. Be sure to mark header “REQUESTED MATERIAL/PWMG” as we delete emails with attachments without this note. Thanks much.
    Mary Cummings
    Agent, Books for Kids and Teens – Betsy Amster Literary Enterprises
    amsterlit.com cummingskidlit.com

  18. Jessica Errera says:

    Hello George–this sounds great and I would love to read the first 75 pages! Please send them as an attachment to jerrera@janerotrosen.com (and a synopsis if you have). I look forward to reading more!

  19. Penelope Burns says:

    Hi George,

    I would love to see this! Can you send the query and full manuscript to penelope@gelfmanschneider.com, with #PitchWars in the subject? Thank you!

    All best,

  20. Danielle Burby says:

    I’m intrigued and would love to see how this story unfolds! Please send me the full manuscript through this Pitch Wars submission link: QueryMe.online/1352/PW20192020

    I’m looking forward to the read!
    Danielle Burby

  21. Hi George,

    SHAD HADID AND THE ALCHEMISTS OF ALEXANDRIA sounds so good! I love all things magic and action-adventure, and I adored Sal & Gabi. If you think we’d be a good fit (you can find more about me and my tastes here: https://www.jdlit.com/savannah-brooks and here: https://www.manuscriptwishlist.com/mswl-post/savannah-brooks/), head to http://queryme.online/1346 to submit more info and a 20-page sample. Be sure to put Pitch Wars 2020 in the referral section or as part of the title (ex: SHAD HADID AND THE ALCHEMISTS OF ALEXANDRIA: Pitch Wars 2020).

    I’m looking forward to reading more!


  22. Zabé Ellor says:

    I love the voice and conflict you’ve set up here, and I’m so excited to see your fresh take on alchemy!

    Please send the query and synopsis (in the body of an email), and full manuscript (as an attachment) to zrellor . books @ gmail . com. I’m looking forward to diving in

  23. Laurel Symonds says:

    Hi! I’d love to see this. Please send a query and 25 pages to symondsqueries@thebentagency.com with “Pitch Wars” in the subject line. I’m looking forward to reading more!

  24. Tamara Kawar says:

    Hi George,

    I’d love to read this! Could you please send the full manuscript to tkawar[at]icmpartners[dot]com and include “PW2019” in your subject line?

    Thank you!