Laurens Gets Seven Figures From Mira
Stephanie Laurens signed a seven-book, seven-figure deal with Harlequin Mira. Harlequin’s Tara Parsons negotiated the sale with agent Nancy Yost, who has an eponymous shingle. Through the deal, Laurens will write three more titles in her Cynster series, retaining the e-rights to the books. Laurens will release the e-book editions of these Cynster titles herself, while Harlequin will simultaneously release the books in print, starting in fall 2014. Harlequin also acquired world rights (excluding Germany and Spain) to four books that will launch a new historical romance series from the author. This planned quartet, the publisher said, will take place in the Regency era in Britain, where Laurens’s preexisting works are set; Harlequin will release the print and e-book editions of these titles simultaneously.
Coffey Lands at Bellevue
PW’s co-editorial director, Michael Coffey, sold world rights to his debut work of fiction, a short story collection called The Business of Naming Things, to Bellevue Literary Press. Agent John Wright represented Coffey, brokering the sale with Bellevue’s Erika Goldman. The book, which is slated for early 2015, offers, Goldman said, “brutally honest yet intimate perspectives on disenchanted fathers, damaged sons, and orphans searching for identity.” Coffey has been at PW for over 25 years and his previous works include the poetry collections 87 North (Coffee House Press), Elemenopy (Sun & Moon), and CMYK (O Books); he also wrote the nonfiction book 27 Men Out: Baseball’s Perfect Game (Atria).
Agent-Cum-Author to Putnam
Former Writers House junior agent Maya Rock sold world rights to Scripted, a young adult novel, to Arianne Lewin at G.P. Putnam’s Sons. The book, which is Rock’s debut, follows a girl living on an island where people disappear. The island, Penguin said, is “Truman Show–esque,” and characters are cut, unbeknownst to the inhabitants, if ratings dip too low. Rock, who now works as a freelance writer and editor, was represented by Michelle Andelman at Regal Literary.
Mulholland Shoots ‘Whiskey’ with Shafer
Josh Kendall at Mulholland Books took U.S. and Canadian rights, at auction, to David Shafer’s debut, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. Agent Grainne Fox at Fletcher & Company represented the author and said she pitched the book as “John le Carré meets Jonathan Franzen”; the novel follows three friends swept up in a global conspiracy that, Fox said, “pits an idealistic online underground against a megalomaniacal businessman on the verge of privatizing the world’s information.” Shafer is a Harvard graduate.
NAL Signs New Hunter Series
Faith Hunter sold world English rights to a new urban fantasy series to her current editor at NAL, Jessica Wade. Lucienne Diver at the Knight Agency handled the three-book deal. Hunter is best known for her paranormal fantasy series, Jane Yellowrock, which launched in 2009 and currently consists of seven titles; it follows a shape-shifter of Cherokee descent who hunts vampires. The new series, Diver said, will feature a heroine named Nell Nicholson Ingram, who was raised in Appalachia and can drain those with magical powers of their gifts. In the first book, Ingram is hired to find a vampire’s missing child by a department within Homeland Security that deals with the paranormal.
Mr. Jenji Kohan Sells Debut
Journalist Christopher Noxon sold his debut novel, Plus One, to Prospect Park Books. Colleen Dunn Bates, the publisher of the small press, took North American rights to the work from agent Betsy Amster at Amster Literary Enterprises. Noxon—who’s written for the New Yorker and the New York Times, among others—follows a midlevel marketing executive who, when his wife breaks through as a TV comedy writer, quits his job to become a househusband, joining, in the words of the publisher, “the ranks of a new breed of Hollywood husbands called the ‘plus ones.’ ” Though Prospect Park said the novel is not autobiographical, Noxon is the husband of Orange Is the New Black creator Jenji Kohan, and he did quit his job when her career took off; the book is set for spring 2015. Plus One has also already gone into development as a TV series with Gaumont International Television (the U.S. division of the French production company behind such series as Hemlock Grove and Hannibal).
Kent Carroll at Europa Editions took U.S. rights to The Stories of Jane Gardam by Jane Gardam. The book, which is set for May 2014, will be, Europa said, the “definitive collection” of the author’s short fiction. Gardam, who is British, is the two-time recipient of the Whitbread Prize (the prize is now known as the Costa Book Award), which honors literary writing by authors from Ireland and Great Britain. The collection, Europa elaborated, “showcases Gardam’s versatility and imagination.” There was no agent in the deal.