Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Literary Acquisitions - October 31

Following are the current acquisitions made by publishers from literary agencies around the world, through the kindest courtesy of



London Observer's New York correspondent Paul Harris's Freetown, about a journalist covering the conflict in Sierre Leone, who, in search of answers to the mysterious and sudden murder of his aid-worker girlfriend, unearths a web of conspiracy and corruption -- pitched as in the spirit of John Le Carre, and inspired by the author's own first-hand experience as a war correspondent, to Trena Keating at Dutton, in a very nice deal, by Elizabeth Sheinkman at Curtis Brown UK (NA). Translation: Dutch rights to De Bezige Bij, in a pre-empt.


Ira Berkowitz's Old Flame, a gritty noir set in Hell's Kitchen, in the vein of the author's debut Family Matters, to Julian Pavia for Three Rivers Press, in a two-book deal, by David Larabell at David Black Literary Agency.Rights:

Malla Nunn's A Beautiful Place to Die, set in South Africa at the time of the introduction of apartheid, to Emily Bestler at Atria, at auction, by Catherine Drayton at Inkwell Management, on behalf of Cameron Creswell.


International bestselling author Ken Follett's The Century Trilogy, focusing on personal dramas set against the looming background of world-changing Twentieth Century historical events up through the Cold War, now officially sold, again to Leslie Gelbman at NAL and Brian Tart at Dutton, for hardcover publication in 2010, 2012, and 2014, by Amy Berkower at Writers House (US).


The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen author Syrie James's new novel, in which Charlotte Bronte, en route to becoming a famous author, reveals the truth behind her turbulent relationship with the man she finally came to love and marry, again to Lucia Macro at Avon, by Tamar Ellman Rydzinski at Laura Dail Literary Agency (World English).


Nicholas Drayson's A Guide to The Birds of East Africa, set in contemporary Kenya with a very unlikely hero, who falls in love with a woman on their monthly guided bird walk but has to compete for her affections with his old school bully, in the form of a competition to spot as many separate species of birds in a week, to Jane Rosenman at Houghton Mifflin, in a nice deal, for publication in July 2008, by Peter Robinson at Robinson Literary Agency (US).

Nelson Algren Literary Award winner and author of Hairstyles of the Damned Joe Meno's The Great Perhaps, the story of an eccentric family in the weeks leading up to the 2004 presidential election: two bumbling professors, two strange daughters, and a grandfather limiting himself to thirteen words a day, then twelve, then eleven -- one less each day until he will speak no more, to Tom Mayer at Norton, by Maria Massie at Lippincott Massie McQuilkin.


Rights to Natalie Robins and Steven Aronson's out of print SAVAGE GRACE, first published in 1985, to tie in with the release of a film version starring Julianne Moore in December 2007, the story of the epic downfall of the heirs to the Bakelite plastics fortune, a tale of money and madness, incest and matricide, to Amanda Patten at Touchstone Fireside, by the authors.


Edgar nominee Megan Abbott's Die a Little, to Jessica Biel and United Artists, by Shari Smiley at CAA, in association with Paul Cirone of Friedrich Agency.

Christopher Rush's Will, the fictional autobiography of William Shakespeare, to SBK Pictures, Sir Ben Kingsley's production company (World).

Children's: Fantasy

Inara Scott's Delacroix: The Choice, in which a high-school freshman must deal with a new school that may or may not have something fishy about it, two very different boys, and her own superpowers, to Jennifer Besser at Hyperion, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, by Tamar Ellman Rydzinski at Laura Dail Literary Agency.

Children's: Young Adult

Screenwriter Andrew Klavan's Homelanders, pitched as Twenty Four meets The Bourne Identity; homeless, broke, and unable to find his parents, a teenager has to outrun both terrorists and the law with only a few days to stop the murder of the Secretary of State in a race against time that brings him face-to-face with a master assassin, to Amanda Bostic at Thomas Nelson, in a four-book deal, by Alyssa Eisner Henkin and Robert Gottlieb at Trident Media Group.


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