Harper Teen Pre-empts Paranormal Series

Erica Sussman at Harper Teen pre-empted Amy Garvey's paranormal YA series Cold Kiss in a six-figure deal. Maureen Walters at Curtis Brown brokered the two-book deal, which is for world English rights. Garvey, a former Kensington editor who's written romances for both Zebra and Harlequin, is taking her first stab at YA with the series, which is about a girl grappling with the sudden emergence of otherworldly powers and the repercussions of resurrecting her dead boyfriend.

Paris, Je T'Aime

Sally Wofford-Girand at Brick House Literary Agents sold, at auction, Ellen Sussman's sophomore novel French Lessons to Jennifer Smith at Ballantine. Smith took world English, in a two-book deal; Lessons follows three Americans whose lives are changed over the course of a single day in Paris as they each explore the City of Lights with a French translator. Grand Central published Sussman's debut, On a Night Like This, in 2005; PW called that book, about former high school classmates who get involved romantically despite one's terminal cancer prognosis, a “high caliber weepy.”

From Bread to Pizza

Peter Wolverton at St. Martin's Press took North American rights to a new cookbook from the pair behind Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François. The authors, who published Artisan Bread and Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day with Thomas Dunne Books, will apply their quick home baking tips to pizza and flatbreads in the new title, expectedly called Pizza and Flatbreads in Five Minutes a Day. Agent Jane Dystel brokered the deal, and SMP is planning to publish in fall 2011.

Penny Re-ups with Minotaur

Louise Penny has signed a new three-book deal, for North American rights, with her current publisher, Minotaur. A rep at St. Martin's called the agreement a “major” one, with Minotaur publishing in partnership with Canadian house H.B. Fenn. Penny, a Times bestseller, saw a heavy push for her September 2009 title, The Brutal Telling, with Minotaur doing an announced 100,000-copy first printing; that book became a Barnes & Noble Recommends Main Selection. Agent Patricia Moosbrugger negotiated the deal with SMP executive editor Hope Dellon.

Do Worry, Be Happy

Tina Bennett, at Jankow and Nesbit, sold U.S. rights to Oliver Burkeman's The Backwards Law:How Failure, Uncertainty, and Death Can Save Your Life to Mitzi Angel at Faber and Faber. Burkeman, a features writer for the Guardian who also pens the Guardian Magazine's weekly psychology column, “This Column Will Change Your Life,” offers, per the publisher, a “bracing antidote” to the self-help genre, discussing a “negative path” to happiness in which we face down the things we spend our lives trying to avoid.


Michael Signorelli at HarperCollins took North American rights to The World Made Flesh: Literary Tattoos from Bookworms Worldwide. Brandi Bowles at Howard Morhaim sold the collection, which is being edited by agent Eva Talmadge and author Justin Taylor. (Signorelli signed Taylor's short story collection, Everything Here Is the Best Thing Ever in January.) Inked bookies who want their tatts displayed can send their skin art to tattoolit@gmail.com.

Da Capo's Kevin Hanover took world rights to Dick Hoyt's Devoted: The Story of a Father's Love for His Son, his autobiographical tale of participating, with his wheelchair-bound son, Rick, in more than 1,000 marathons. Hoyt is writing with former Sports Illustrated editor Don Yaeger; no agent was involved in the deal, and Da Capo is planning an April 2010 publication.