aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

Pitch Perfect?

I recently got this letter from Goldberg McDuffie Communications, which has the reputation as being one of the best book PR firms in the business. (Full disclosure: I think their services are pricey, too, and normally paid for the publishing house, not the author. ) This letter tells the story of the book in 3.5 sentences. That's good. It also manages to work in four references to books and movies - and distinguish this book from them - in the two sentences. (Full disclosure: do the references work? They might have been better chosen. "Comic thriller" already tells me the book doesn't star Harry Bosch or Jack Reacher - or John Cusack's character in The Grifters, for that matter. Nicholas Cage in Matchstick Men was a scoundrel, but the movie was a drama.) And the guy's got a great back story, so that's emphasized, too. I wonder how similar this is to the query letter the writer sent to agent, or the cover letter the agent sent to the editor.

Dear April,

Have you had a chance to look at the galley of CON ED, Matthew Klein’s comic thriller, coming out from Warner Books in March? I thought you might consider doing a review, because this book is not your typical mystery, and Klein has a fascinating background. He was a young tech whiz who dropped out of Stanford Business School, started three companies out of his bedroom, raised millions, and employed over 400 people – and then lost it all. When unable to find gainful employment, he started programming stock-market prediction software. That’s where the idea of CON ED came from. Banished from the Silicon Valley, Klein now lives just outside New York City.

Klein's protagonist in CON ED is no Harry Bosch or Jack Reacher – he's a scoundrel. Think John Cusack in The Grifters or Nicolas Cage in Matchstick Men. After eight years in jail, Kip Largo is trying to lead an honest life. But when his loser son needs saving from the Russian Mob, Kip decides to pull off one last "big con" to raise enough money to bail out his son. He devises the ultimate business scam: he'll pretend to be a Silicon Valley entrepreneur who starts a high-tech software company that predicts the stock market. Could this massive $20 million-dollar stock-market manipulation scheme really work? Matthew Klein says yes.

Interested in coverage? I know March is a few months away, but I was hoping to get this one on your radar. And FYI, film rights to the book have been acquired by Industry Entertainment.

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