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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 YA #38: NO COLDER STREAM OF STARS (Fantasy #OwnVoices)
Jules Arbeaux
Mentored by:
Sunya Mara
Book Title:
2020 Entries
YA Fantasy (#OwnVoices)
Word Count:


A cat-and-mouse queerplatonic love story for fans of SERPENT & DOVE:

Prison-born Tory's kept his magic under wraps for seventeen years―but when he uses it to stop a carriage-accident-in-progress, he knows the military will hunt him down and lock him away again. Lt. Sena Vantaras despises having to hunt Tory, but the kill-switch his father embedded in his spine means he has no choice. It's hate at first sight―and their only hope of freedom lies in each other's hands.



The earth folds in on itself without ceremony, startling birds from the vine-choked wall around Hulven up into the orange afternoon sky.

The collapse—and if he can feel it this far from the mines, it’s a bad one—shudders up through Tory Arknett’s bones. Teeth clenched so tight his jaw aches, Tory splits firewood in brutal strokes. They’ll be here soon.

Sure enough, a clump of miners hunches through the gray fuel fog that eddies around Thatcher’s crumbling repair shop, the leader smeared fingertips-to-elbows in red.

Tory swings the ax. “How many?”

“Just one,” the bloodied miner breathes.

He’d rather heal a thousand small wounds. Just one means blood collecting in pools, means shattered bones and shredded organs. Tory squeezes his eyes shut and bids farewell to his ability to walk for the next few days. He twists his mouth into what he hopes is a meek smile. “Where to?”

The miners shift, murmur, and examine their feet.

Just like that, Tory knows where. The ax slips from his hands with a hollow thud out of tune with his hammering heart.

“He’s…just outside the mine.”

The mine, guarded by cruel soldiers in familiar, charcoal-gray uniforms. He’ll bite off his own tongue before he goes near them again.

4 responses to “PW2020 YA #38: NO COLDER STREAM OF STARS (Fantasy #OwnVoices)”

  1. Carlisle Webber says:

    I would like to see this. Please send your query letter and the full manuscript to carlisle @ fuseliterary .com with the subject Pitch Wars Requested Material: TITLE. If you get a request from more than one agent at Fuse, please choose one of us; we don’t compete with each other for manuscripts.

    I look forward to reading your work!

  2. Michaela Whatnall says:

    I am so excited to see representation of queerplatonic love! This sounds wonderful, and I would love to read more. Please send your query and the first 50 pages as a Word doc attachment to mwhatnall@dystel.com. I’m looking forward to reading!

    Please note that if more than one agent from Dystel, Goderich & Bourret has requested your work, we ask that you choose which of us you’d like to submit to first, and let that agent know who else from our agency made a request. Thanks very much!

  3. Lee OBrien says:

    This looks so cool–I would love to read the rest!

    To query me, you can send the query and full MS to lee.queries@irenegoodman.com with the words “Pitch Wars” in the subject line! If another agent at Irene Goodman requests your manuscript, please submit to just one agent at a time. If they pass, you are welcome to resubmit to another.

  4. Penelope Burns says:

    Hi Jules,

    I’m intrigued here! If you’re interested, can you send your query and first 50 pages to penelope@gelfmanschneider.com, with PitchWars in the subject line? Thank you!

    All best,