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krashnburn

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I'm getting ready to query a new MG MS and I'm having a hard time picking comps for this one. It's contemporary fantasy with a lot of action, but I feel like everything in this genre I've read recently has been quieter. I'll put my query prototype here and if a book or author jumps out at you, please share with me your reading recommendation. Thanks!

When twelve-year-old Mia’s family moved from Manhattan to Grandma’s farm in Watermole, Wyoming, Mia was onboard with the big change. It was for Mom’s health, after all. But Watermole is B-O-R-I-N-G. So rumor of a ghost has Mia pumped and racing to investigate, though all she finds is an old locket. Then the ghost appears in town. He claims he was robbed and threatens to destroy Watermole with ten plagues over three days unless the thief and his property are surrendered.

Oh, boy, the locket! But before Mia can return it, it’s lost as she runs from the first plague: a tsunami of tumbleweeds that surrounds Watermole, isolating it. The freaked-out townsfolk don’t believe a stupid, old charm is the reason. Only the school bullies want to help—that is, be heroes. Sooo not ideal, but if it helps save Mom, okay, fine.

Mia leads their locket search through a jackalope horde and a stinkweed invasion, but they’re fighting the plagues and each other. If Mia can’t mold them into a team and find that locket, she has no chance of stopping the biggest bully of them all: the ghost

And mom will be toast.
 
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Laurel

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Ghost stories are pretty popular in middle grade. Maybe take a look at Scritch Scratch by Lindsay Currie, Ghost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega, and the Ghost Hunter's Daughter by Dan Poblocki and see if you think any of those are good comps. Also, you might have more luck finding good comps if you search for middle grade horror or supernatural, rather than contemporary fantasy.
 

krashnburn

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Thank you. In hindsight, I should have mentioned that the ghost turns out to not be a ghost, but a fantasy being. It's definitely not horror or supernatural.
 

Laurel

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Thank you. In hindsight, I should have mentioned that the ghost turns out to not be a ghost, but a fantasy being. It's definitely not horror or supernatural.

Hmm... You might still be able to use some horror/supernatural books as comps. You don't need to find a book that's EXACTLY like yours to comp -- it just has to have some similarities and appeal to similar audiences. You could also try doing a "X meets Y" comp where X is a ghost story and Y is a fantasy, or something like that.
 

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