I know I already posted today, but this is for a Twitter query critique exchange. Any comments are welcome and appreciated!
Genre: New Adult Science Fiction
Word Count: 108,000
Joyel is a weapon: a genetically engineered ten-year-old. When the ruthless faction leader Anson kidnaps the royal Joyel, she is subjected to years of brainwashing. He demands that she view him as father, embrace a new identity, and become his political assassin.
He trains her to kill her family. But Joyel is determined to be subject to no man.
She grasps the illusion of identity by cutting, etching her hatred of Anson into her skin until the time to bring justice upon him has come. Despite her resistance, every year she finds herself more attached to him, struggling to strike out against the man she now calls father. To escape from being his pawn, she must kill Anson and destroy the monster she has become.
CHRYSALIS is a science fiction novel for new adults complete at 108,000 words which asks what is more important: to know who you are, or to whom you belong?
First 250 Words
Joyel pressed back against the cold wall, away from the large men, away from the strange torches. Something jabbed her. A heavily veiled woman stood over her and dug something sharp in her little arm. Pain became warmth. Warmth burned into a fire. The heat made the room spin around her. Even in motion, the room could not pretend to be familiar. The smooth coldness of the wall against her back reminded Joyel of the truth.
She was not at home. She was not at the Arboretum.
Spinning easing into a slower pace, Joyel braved a look at people in the room with her. The three strangers dressed liked citizens from the province of Miaarn. The men wore the open vests, the strange looking pants that ballooned round the cuff, and wide decorative sashes wrapped around their hips that separated Miaarns from the rest of Phandiwe. The woman’s heavy veiling meant she was a Miaarn slave. Joyel must be in that dreaded province. Gripping the rails of the bed and sitting back against the wall kept her from falling onto the floor. But how? She had been traveling with her guardian, Micaah, to visit her friends. It had been warm and bright on the journey, the sun pouring in the carriage. What had gone wrong? Why was it cold and dark, where she was? And where was Micaah?
Joyel glanced around the room for him, but the overpowering furnishings and lush trappings captivated her gaze.