In 2007 New York Magazine named her one of the "writing stars of tomorrow." This week, William Morris Endeavor agent Bill Clegg sold her first novel, for six figures, to Andrea Walker at Penguin Press. In one of the more buzzed-about sales of the week, Walker took North American rights to You Are One Of Them by Pushcart Prize winner Elliott Holt.
The novel is set in Washington, D.C., during the 1980's and follows Sarah Zuckerman, who grows up in the shadow of the Cold War and the daughter of a single mother. After Sarah begins writing letters, with her best friend Jenny, to Soviet premier Yuri Andropov, asking for peace, Jenny is shot into the limelight and winds up visiting the U.S.S.R. The friendship suffers and then Jenny meets a tragic fate, dying with her family in a plane crash. That is, until, Sarah, on the eve of her college graduation, receives a letter from the Soviet Union that brings into question Jenny's presumed fate.
In his pitch letter for the novel, Clegg called the book "an evocative, taut, and moving debut as comfortable exploring the shape-shifting nature of truth as it is with the open-hearted vulnerability of our deepest relationships." Holt, in addition to her early New York Magazine plug--that piece ran when Holt was studying at Brooklyn College with Michael Cunningham--was also a runner-up for the 2011 PEN Emerging Writers Award. She grew up in Washtingon, D.C.