Jun 8, 2016

Agent Round: Adult Dark Romantic Suspense - The Dictator's Wife

Title: The Dictator’s Wife
Entry Nickname: Cuddles and Coups
Word Count: 82K
Genre: Adult Dark Romantic Suspense


A military dictatorship governs Britain, led by the First Lord of the Treasury, Julien St John Helmsley. Julien is charming, charismatic, and utterly ruthless, particularly towards the resistance group known as the Treaty.

Melanie Bonham, a member of the Treaty and enemy of the state, accepts her commanding officer’s orders for a deadly last stand. She must become the First Lord’s mistress, learn his secrets, and then assassinate him. Failure would mean torture, death, and vicious retaliation against the rebels, but success could restore democracy.

But Melanie has a secret. Before she faked her death and fled to the Treaty in disguise, she was Julien’s beloved but equally merciless wife. Instead of sneaking into the Regime’s stronghold as the Treaty expects, she makes a triumphant return as the long-lost First Lady, claiming the rebels have held her prisoner for years.

In love with the man she’s meant to kill and tempted by absolute power, “Melanie” must choose between freeing the country and breaking her heart or ruling at Julien’s side and losing her soul – before both sides seek to execute her as a traitor.

Alternating chapters jump backwards and forwards in time to tell the story of the idealistic build-up to the military coup and the brutal realities of its aftermath and to reveal why our rather unreliable narrator really left, why she’s really returned and where her true loyalties lie.

First 250:

I became a triple-agent on the eighth anniversary of Britain’s military coup.

That morning, I strode into the Treaty’s underground control room and pushed through the crowd until I reached the resistance leader.

“Good of you to finally join us, Melanie.” Without another word, David set our hacked CCTV feed to show Somerset House. The elegant arches and columns of the Regime’s London headquarters formed a stark contrast to this utilitarian network of abandoned mines. I studied the soldiers guarding the archway and the helicopters hovering above the courtyard, but the larger-than-life portraits covering the façade demanded my attention.

Honour the First Lord ordered the painting on the left, which depicted a striking man in replica nineteenth-century military uniform. Remember the Eternal Blessed First Lady mourned its companion. My co-conspirators considered its subject a she-devil in life and their most high-profile victim in death.

“The Regime bombed Derby last week for supporting our cause. Yesterday, they wiped out an entire platoon. We need to stop the First Lord once and for all.” Years of outdoor living had given David muscles and a hearty glow. When he spoke, people listened.

I ignored him.

My eyes lingered on the second portrait until I was content the so-called Eternal Blessed First Lady’s curves, red lips and Dior gown bore no resemblance to my soldier’s body and weather-beaten face. Besides, the dictator’s wife had been famous for her Rapunzel curls, and I’d cropped my hair to the skull five years ago when I’d fled to the Treaty.


  1. I would love a chance to take a look. Please feel free to send first 3 chapters and query along with the synopsis to acquisitions@curiosityquills.com #QueryKombat Requested Materials" in the subject line. Thanks! And good luck :)

  2. Dear Cuddles and Coups,

    Please do email the full manuscript and query letter my way.

    To tell you a little bit about our literary agency, which closes more deals for authors than any other agency worldwide: tridentmediagroup.com

    Trident Media Group (TMG) is a prominent literary agency located in New York City that originally formed in 2000. TMG represents over 1,000 bestselling and emerging authors in a range of genres of fiction and nonfiction, many of whom have appeared on the New York Times Best Sellers Lists and have won major awards and prizes, including the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the P.E.N. Faulkner Award, the P.E.N. Hemingway Award, The Booker Prize, and the L.A. Times Book Award, among others. TMG is one of the world’s leading, largest and most diversified literary agencies.

    For more than ten consecutive years, TMG continues to rank number one for sales according to publishersmarketplace.com in North America. TMG is the only U.S. literary agency to consistently be in the top ten in both UK fiction and UK non-fiction and has ranked as highly as number one in UK fiction deals.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    All the best,


    Mark Gottlieb
    Literary Agent
    Trident Media Group, LLC
    41 Madison Avenue, Floor 36
    New York, NY 10010
    (212) 333-1506

  3. I'd love to take a look at this! Please send pages attached in word to rena (at) thedeborahharrisagency (dot) com
    - Rena Rossner

  4. This sounds great! I’d love to read more. Please send the full manuscript to query@newleafliterary.com with the subject line: Query Kombat – Jaida.