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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.
PW2020 Adult #44: THE BOY WHO WAS YOU (Domestic thriller)
Rachel Brown
Mentored by:
Stephen Morgan
Book Title:
The Boy Who Was You
2020 Adult Entries
Domestic thriller
Word Count:


The Couple Next Door meets The Chain in this domestic thriller where the truth is more dangerous than the lie.

To cover up the death of your son, you take someone else’s child and raise him as your own. At least, that’s Maddie’s husband’s solution. It’s best for everyone, he says, including the boy. But the truth of the child’s identity is a secret that will upend both families’ lives.



More than anything, Maddie wanted a drink. She paced the perimeter of her son’s bedroom. Twenty-seven steps today. Yesterday it had been twenty-six. Her husband had made sure the house was alcohol-free before he left to deliver their terrible news to his parents. Whenever she wanted to drive to the package store, Maddie beat herself back by remembering her last conversation with Nathan. June 18, just a few days after his sixth birthday. A week earlier. A lifetime ago.

“Mommy, are you alcohol sick?” he’d asked.

She hadn’t even known he was in the room and she turned sharply, bottle in hand. His new short haircut made him look even more serious than usual: a young inquisitor.

“Where did you hear that?”

“You and Daddy said so last night.”

The things kids overheard. Maddie and Ralph had been talking about alcoholics anonymous. She wanted to go, but he disagreed because they’d done so well fighting her demons together. She was almost there, he said. He always preferred homespun remedies.

“No, honey,” she lied. “Mommy’s fine. Aren’t you going outside to ride Queenie? Your dad’s getting her ready for you.”

But she’d been wrong. Ralph hadn’t been getting the pony ready. He hadn’t even been home.

Her phone vibrated. She pulled it out of her pocket and glanced down. Speak of the devil.

14 responses to “PW2020 Adult #44: THE BOY WHO WAS YOU (Domestic thriller)”

  1. Jess Dallow says:

    Hi Rachel,

    This sounds so fantastic! I’d love for you to send your query letter and synopsis in the body of the email with the full manuscript attached in a word doc to jess@browerliterary.com, Pitch Wars in the subject line.

    If someone else from Brower requests this, just email us both and we’ll decide in house who will read and let you know.

    Looking forward to reading!


  2. Anya Goncharova says:

    Dear Rachel, I am absolutely obsessed with the premise and I would really love to read more. Could you please send through the first 50 pages of your MS for our consideration? My email is anya@peonyliteraryagency.com Can’t wait, and I hope you are doing as well as possible at this uncertain time! All my best, Anya; Peony Literary Agency

  3. Shannon Snow says:

    Hi Rachel,

    Your entry really grabbed me. I would love for you to send me the complete manuscript, synopsis and a short bio in Word format to shannon@cmalit.com.

    Please put “PitchWars-Title” in the subject line so it will be certain to stand out in my inbox.

    If more than one agent requests materials from you from our agency (Creative Media Agency, Inc. or CMA), please feel free to pick one only, and if it’s not right for that agent, they will share it with the others.

    Thank you and good luck! Wishing you success!!


  4. Renae Moore says:

    Please send your query, synopsis, and first two chapters of your book using the following link: QueryManager.com/renae/PitchWars

  5. Lori Galvin says:

    Dear Rachel,
    Thank you for sharing your work. I would love to read more. Could you please send the full and query letter to lgalvin[at]aevitascreative[dot]com. Thanks again.

    Lori Galvin

  6. Paige Wheeler says:

    Thank you for your participation in Pitch Wars. I found your project intriguing and would very much like to see the first three chapters of the manuscript. Please email me at paige@cmalit.com the following attachments in Microsoft Word format (not PDF):
    1. the first three chapters,
    2. a synopsis of your project,
    3. a short bio including any previous publications.
    To expedite the review process, please use “requested material-pitch wars” as the subject heading of your email.
    As a professional courtesy, please let me know if any other agents are considering your work. Also, if you do get an offer, please contact me so that I may be able to review and respond accordingly.

    I look forward to reading your work!
    Kind regards,
    Paige Wheeler 

  7. Megan Barnard says:

    This sounds amazing! Please send me your query and full manuscript in an attached word doc using this link: https://querymanager.com/query/Mbarnard/PitchWars. Can’t wait to read!

  8. Jessica Alvarez says:

    I would buy this book off the shelf in a heartbeat. I suspect one of my BookEnds colleagues beat me to a request but, if not, I’d love to give it a read. Please upload your manuscript, synopsis, and query at this link: http://www.QueryManager.com/JessicaAlvarez/PitchWars. Thanks!
    Jessica Alvarez, BookEnds Literary

  9. Victoria Cappello says:

    What great pitch, I’d love to read more. If you’d like me to consider, please send the full manuscript as a word doc to victoria@thebentagency.com and put ‘Pitch Wars’ in the subject. If another agent here at TBA also requests, that’s totally okay, we’d just be grateful if you would let us know if more than one of us has your work. Thank you!

  10. Jenny Bent says:

    Love this concept! Can you please send the full to me at pitchwars@thebentagency.com, and put “pitchwars” in the subject line. It’s perfectly fine to send to multiple agents at TBA if you get those requests, just please do let us know who else you are sending to so we can coordinate on responses.

  11. Aida Lilly says:

    Hi there!
    I’d love to see more. If you’d like to submit to me:
    Please send over your first 100 pages and a complete synopsis (with spoilers) to aida@ktliterary.com and include Pitch Wars in the subject line.
    If you receive a request from multiple agents at KT Literary, please only submit to one of us at a time.

  12. Sharon Pelletier says:

    Hi Rachel, I’d love to read more! Could you please send your query with 50 sample pages attached? spelletier@dystel.com (And if other DG&B agents have requested, just choose who you think is the best fit and let them know when you query who else was interested.)

    Sharon Pelletier
    Dystel, Goderich & Bourret

  13. Sandy Lu says:

    Hi Rachel,

    I’m intrigue! Please send the full manuscript, preceded by your bio and complete synopsis (all in one Word document) to submissions@bookwyrmlit.com. I look forward to reading more!

    Sandy Lu
    Book Wyrm Literary Agency

  14. Zabé Ellor says:

    Creepy! I love a good domestic thriller!

    Please could you send the query and first fifty pages to me, as an attachment, at zrellor.books@gmail.com? Please paste your query on the first page of your attached sample pages, and also in the body of the email, and include PITCH WARS in the subject line. If more than one JDLA agent requests, feel free to first submit to the one you think is the best fit.