Maddalena is looking for commercial fiction across all genres, particularly romance, romcoms and women’s fiction and crime, thrillers and mysteries. She is looking for hooky pitches, unforgettable characters and page-turning narratives – usually the kinds of stories that come wrapped in brightly coloured paperbacks.
In women’s fiction, Maddalena loves a story that can hook a reader with one sentence and set their mind racing. She would like to find a sweeping love story with an epic twist (be that a twist of magic or a twist in the plot – or both, like Rebecca Serle’s In Five Years) or with an original, compelling concept at its heart like The Time Traveller’s Wife or One Day.
When it comes to romcoms, Maddalena loves a good trope. Give her enemies to lovers, grumpy/sunshine, fake dating or a love triangle and she’s sold. She would love to find a great sports romcom, too. Her favourite writers in this space include Ali Hazelwood, Emily Henry, Hannah Grace, Sally Thorne and Elena Armas.
She is also keen to find more young adult, new adult and adult romantasy. In this space Maddalena is looking for fun hooks, swooning romance, high stakes and strong female characters facing impossible decisions. Recent favourites in this space include Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros, Trial of the Sun Queen by Nisha J Tuli and Stephanie Garber’s Once Upon a Broken Heart series.
In crime fiction Maddalena is on the lookout for fast-paced standalone thrillers, original and gripping whodunnits, locked room mysteries and dark-edged psychological suspense. Her favourite writers in this space include Ruth Ware, Lisa Jewell, Lucy Foley and Alice Feeney. She loves the mechanics of a good murder plot and especially novels which tell these stories from an ambitious and creative new angle, like Alex Pavesi’s Eight Detectives, Gillian McAllister’s Wrong Place Wrong Time or Keigo Higashino’s The Devotion of Suspect X.
Maddalena joined David Higham Associates in 2017. As well as building her own list she assists DHA’s Managing Director Lizzy Kremer and helps to run DHA’s Open Days for Under-Represented Writers.
Querying authors should send the opening three chapters, a synopsis and a cover letter to email@example.com.