Questioning the Commander-in-Chief
In a quick pre-Frankfurt six-figure sale, Mitchell Ivers at Simon & Schuster/Threshold acquired world English-language rights to The Post-American Presidency by Pamela Geller, the popular Atlas Shrugged blogger, and four-time New York Times bestselling author Robert Spencer (The Truth About Muhammad and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam [and the Crusades]). Scott Mendel at the Mendel Media group did the deal and says the book will appeal far beyond Threshold's conservative base. Publication is expected in July 2010.
'Hacking Work' to Portfolio
Mollie Glick of Foundry Literary + Media accepted a six-figure pre-empt from David Moldawer at Portfolio for a business book she says could be the next Four Hour Workweek. Hacking Work by business consultant and researcher Bill Jensen and Web strategist Josh Klein explores how employees at most major corporations are breaking outdated company rules to take back control of their work and increase productivity and personal satisfaction.
The (somewhat) successful effort by the CIA to secretly salvage the Soviet missile submarine K-129, which sank in the North Pacific in 1968, is the subject of AZORIAN: The Raising of the K-129 by Norman Polmar working in collaboration with filmmaker Michael White. AZORIAN—code name for the government operation—was acquired by Naval Institute Press editorial director Rick Russell, who will edit. The book will include information being gathered for a documentary of the same name that White is doing, which includes interviews with senior CIA officials, engineers who built the Hughes Glomar Explorer that was used to retrieve the submarine, plus the men who sailed on the Glomar, which was able to recover a portion of the doomed sub. White and Polmar, who has written or coauthored more than 40 books, have also had access to previously closed files. No air date has been set for the documentary, but NIP will publish K-129 in fall 2010. The deal was unagented.
Gallery Gets off the Ground
In one of the first hardcover acquisitions for Simon & Schuster's newly formed Gallery Books, executive editor Lauren McKenna bought world English rights to Simmer by Jael McHenry. It's the story of a socially awkward, 20-something woman who, after the deaths of her parents, finds that she can invoke ghosts by cooking from dead people's recipes—and that her happiness might just depend on a bowl of bread soup and a batch of Scottish shortbread. Elisabeth Weed at Weed Literary handled the pre-empt deal.
Rob Tempio at Princeton University Press has pre-empted Ian Morris's New History of the Ancient World. Stanford professor Morris, who is releasing a book with Farrar, Straus & Giroux (Why the West Rules... for Now) this fall, will set New History up as a 21st-century reassessment of ancient history, beginning around 9,600 B.C.E. and ending around 500 C.E. Sandra Dijkstra handled the world English rights deal.
Just before Frankfurt, Henry Ferris at William Morrow bought North American rights to Evil Will: An American Pastor's Battle for Nazi Souls at Nuremberg and the Ancient Alliance Between the Divine and the Damned by Tim Townsend. The deal was brokered by William Morris Endeavor's Eric Simonoff. The author, a religion reporter at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch who holds master's degrees from Columbia's J-school and Yale Divinity, asks the questions: “are some men so evil they are beyond redemption? Is it possible to take the notion of 'love the sinner, hate the sin' too far?”