Kirsten Neuhaus of Vigliano Associates passed on the full manuscript. It happens so often, these rejections, that I don't even notice. Check it off the list and move on.
You always hope that an agent who reads your manuscript would pass along a clue as to why they passed. Too slow of an opening? The writing needs a polish? Nice to have an idea of where to go and how to improve before trying other agents.
Then there are times like this when the agent doesn't feel that the story is fresh. There are no new stories, when you think about it. There are a bunch of old stories told in a new way, and that is what an agent wants. Apparently, the story I told doesn't stand out from the crowd.
There's no fixing that. The plot is what it is. You can't rewrite a bit or remove the extraneous adverbs. The story is too much like other stories. You can change whole subplots, but then you're not telling the story you want to tell, and who could say if a different story line would resonate?
Might as well try other agents with the manuscript as it stands. It's just as likely that another agent might find the manuscript to be a fresh take on an age-old problem. Or I could save it, to use for a second book in a multi-book deal.