LBBYR Lands NBA Finalist
Little Brown Books for Young Readers senior editor Alvina Ling won world rights (excluding U.K. and Commonwealth) at auction to Laini Taylor's tentatively titled new YA novel, Daughter of Smoke and Bone. Ling beat four other houses for the work, which was put on the block by Jane Putch at Eyebait Licensing & Management. Daughter, which is scheduled for fall 2011, is about a pair of star-crossed lovers kept apart by the fact that one's an angel and the other's a demon; also woven into the tale is the story of the devil's adopted daughter, a blue-haired art student in Prague. LBBYR is promising a significant marketing push for the title, which it believes will have crossover appeal to adults. Taylor's NBA finalist, 2009's Lips Touch, was published by Scholastic.
Putnam Goes Back to 6/8/68
Marysue Rucci at Putnam preempted world rights to David Rowell's debut novel, The Only Way We Can Live. Rowell is an editor at the Washington Post Magazine, and the book takes place over the course of a single notable day in U.S. history, June 8, 1968, when Robert F. Kennedy's body was moved from New York City to Washington, D.C. Rucci said the book, which follows different narrative strands, attempts to capture the tumult of that year, which also saw the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. Agent Molly Friedrich brokered the deal.
Other Press Hears Voices
Judith Gurewich at Other Press acquired U.S. rights to a memoir by Brit Emma Forrest. In Your Voice in My Head, Forrest, who's written for Vogue and Vanity Fair, among other magazines, focuses on her early years in New York as a writer suffering from cyclical bouts of depression who is drawn to destructive relationships. The book does have a redemptive angle, though, since Forrest began seeing a therapist who helped her pull her life together. Kim Witherspoon at Inkwell closed the deal, on behalf of Felicity Rubinstein of Lutyens and Rubinstein, and the book's currently in development with director Joe Wright (Atonement); Other Press is planning a summer 2011 publication.
From Carver to Adams
Sandra Dijkstra closed on another literary biography by the author of last year's celebrated Raymond Carver: A Writer's Life, Carol Sklenicka. Colin Harrison at Scribner bought North American rights to Sklenicka's Much Love: A Life of Alice Adams. The book marks the first biography of Adams, who, like Carver, found literary success later in life. Sklenicka, speaking to Adams's unsung literary importance, said she was often referred to as "our Colette" by a group of author-friends that included Norman Mailer, Mary Gaitskill, and Ann Lamott.
St. Martin's Press has acquired, for its Minotaur imprint, a Thailand-set mystery series by British author Colin Cotterill. Keith Kahla bought U.S. rights from Emma Thawley at Cotterrill's U.K. publisher, Quercus. Cotterill, who won a CWA Dagger for his Dr. Siri mystery series, now lives in Thailand, and the first title in the new line, tentatively Whim of a Hat, follows a Thai journalist looking into a decades-old mystery involving dead bodies found in a van. Minotaur is planning to release the first two books in the series in spring/summer 2011.
Gallery Nabs Gardner
Tricia Boczkowski at Gallery Books took world rights, in a preempt, to a tentatively titled memoir by Jennifer Gardner, Enough for a Lifetime. David Kuhn at Kuhn Projects sold the book, which is about a 9/11 widow who unsuspectingly found love after her husband's untimely death. Gardner, a Harvard Law School grad whose husband was a high level exec at Cantor Fitzgerald, was shocked when she met a man 10 months after 9/11 with whom she ultimately fell in love, married and welcomed as a second father to her two children. Gallery Books is planning a fall 2011 release.
Sterling Goes With Bassett
Sterling has inked a multi-book deal with bestselling author and infomercial fixture Lucinda Bassett. Bassett is president of the Midwest Center for Stress & Anxiety, and the first book in the deal, The Solution, is scheduled for January 2011. Agent Margaret McBride represented Bassett, whose infomercial for her program dubbed "Attacking Anxiety and Depression" is one of the longest running infomercials of all time. The Solution, Sterling said, gives readers an outline for an "emotional makeover" in 30 days.
Reagan Arthur Gets Pinnochio-like
Jeff Kleinman at Folio Literary sold world rights, in a preempt, to Eowyn Ivey's debut, The Snow Child, to Andrea Walker at Reagan Arthur Books. In the novel, set in 1920s Alaska, a childless couple wakes one morning, after building a snowman, to find a mysterioius little girl in the woods. Ivey, a former reporter at the Frontiersman newspaper, is now a bookseller at the Palmer, Ak., indie, Fireside Books.