If there is one thing that Shana Drehs, editorial manager of Sourcebooks Landmark imprint wants booksellers to know about its fiction line, it’s that while it remains committed to publishing good historical fiction, Jane Austen–inspired sequels, and new work by noted authors like Michael Malone, it is in pursuit of novels that will be “great book club reads” and provide lots of hand-selling opportunities. Sourcebooks Landmark, now in its 13th year, is firmly planted in the realm of “up-market fiction,” which she describes as a blend of literary and commercial fiction—with a special dedication to women’s fiction. And Sourcebooks Landmark has not been shy about building its list.
Last fall the publisher made headlines when Drehs offered screenwriter-turned-novelist Dianne Dixon (The Language of Secrets, Doubleday 2010) a six-figure pre-empt for her next two novels. The first one, The Book of Someday, is the imprint’s lead title for the fall, and Dixon will be signing galley copies today in booth 829, 1–2 p.m. Tomorrow, 1–2 p.m., Landmark author Cathie Pelletier—winner of the New England Booksellers award—will sign copies of her just published The One-Way Bridge. Landmark is also discovering new voices in fiction and will have galleys at BEA for two debut novels: The Paris Architect by Charles Belfoure and The Lies You Wanted to Hear by James Thomson. Drehs says that Belfoure, who is an architect, set his story in Paris during the Nazi occupation; the protagonist becomes resentful of Jews because he cannot find work until he is commissioned to design ingenious hiding places for them as the war becomes more personal. In The Lies You Wanted to Hear, Thomson explores what happens when the lies you tell in a marriage cause more harm than the truth.
Landmark launched in 2001 with Michael Malone’s First Lady—which went on to become a New York Times bestseller—and now publishes 35–40 books a year, building a steady backlist and audiences for its authors. Susanna Kearsley is one of Landmark’s bestselling authors—her The Winter Sea has sold more than 200,000 copies and The Shadowy Horses recently hit the New York Times list.