Castillo Nabs Int’l Hit & a Self-Pubbed Bestseller
Johanna Castillo, senior editor and v-p at Atria Books, took U.S. and Canadian rights to the Italian bestseller by Massimo Gramellini, Fai bei sogni (or, as it will be called in English, Sweet Dreams). Sheila Crowley at Curtis Brown brokered the deal on behalf of Italian publisher Longanesi. The book, which the S&S imprint said has sold 600,000 copies in the author’s native country, has become something of a global hit: rights have been acquired in 13 countries with more deals pending, and a movie deal is expected to close soon. The semiautobiographical work—it’s about the death of the author’s mother—explores, as Atria put it, “humanity’s relentless search for love, truth, and forgiveness.”

In a second deal, Castillo nabbed world rights to two books by Colleen Hoover, her originally self-published debut, Slammed, as well as its (also self-published) sequel, Point of Retreat. Jane Dystel at Dystel & Goderich Literary Management represented Hoover. Slammed follows a teenage girl named Layken who, after being uprooted in the wake of her father’s sudden death, must start over at a new high school, in a new state. Her situation improves after she falls for her dashing neighbor, Will. Dystel said Slammed is a “love story for the ages,” adding that it’s a “unique page-turner that throws convention out the window in both structure and theme.”

Sandlin Re-Ups at Pantheon
Lee Sandlin, author of 2010’s Wicked River, signed a new two-book contract with his current publisher, Pantheon. In the deal, Tim O’Connell took North American rights from agent Danielle Egan-Miller, of Browne & Miller Literary Associates. Sandlin, who writes narrative nonfiction, has Storm Kings already under contract with Pantheon—the book, about the country’s earliest tornado chasers, is scheduled for March 2013. The first title covered in his new contract will be called American Electric: The Romance of Our Early Infrastructure. Egan-Miller said it will examine “the undercurrent of unrest that gripped America during the rise and development of the electrical grid in the late 19th century.”

Cremer to Go Adult, and Erotic, for Dutton
Bestselling YA author Andrea Cremer has agreed to do an adult erotic trilogy for Dutton. The author, who is best known for her popular Nightshade series (which Penguin’s Philomel imprint publishes), sold North American rights to three books that will be set within the Nightshade world. Dutton president and publisher Brian Tart negotiated the deal with Richard Pine and Charlie Olsen at Inkwell Management, and Dutton’s Jessica Horvath will be editing. The first book in the series—Dutton said it’s about “the lives, passions, and betrayals of lovers whose very desires invite their dooms”—is scheduled for October 2013.

Sales Gets ‘Suicidal’ at FSG
FSG Books for Young Readers’ Joy Peskin acquired North American rights to Leila Sales’s YA novel, My Suicide Playlist. Stephen Barbara at Foundry Literary + Media represented Sales, who, in addition to being an author (Mostly Good Girls and Past Perfect), works as an associate editor at Viking Children’s Books. In the novel she follows a 16-year-old named Elise Dembowski, who stumbles on an underground dance club in her town and gains entry to a world of late-night dance parties until, as Barbara explained, “her ordinary life threatens to intrude.” The novel is slated for fall 2013.

Peaches Author Explores New ‘World’ for Aladdin
Jodi Lynn Anderson, author of the YA series Peaches, sold a middle-grade novel called The Ordinary World to Liesa Abrams at Simon & Schuster’s Aladdin imprint. Agent Rosemary Stimola, of Stimola Literary Studio, brokered the North American rights deal, and said the book is set “in a myth-laden but recognizable world where reality TV coexists with dragons, mermaids are a threat to cruise lines, and Sasquatches helped to win the American civil war.” The book follows a 10-year-old named Grace Lockwood, who, along with her family, sets out to find a legendary island, promised to be a refuge, as she and her clan are, as Stimola explained, “pursued by a cloud that is coming for one of them.” The book is set for fall 2014.

Robert Pigeon at Da Capo took world rights to Stephen Harding’s The Last Battle in a deal negotiated by Scott Mendel at Mendel Media. The book, set for spring 2013, is about one of the final WWII battles in Europe fought by American soldiers. In the showdown, Da Capo said, American troops and Germans “fought side by side to protect a castle full of prickly French VIP prisoners from an attack by desperate and fanatical SS units.” Harding is a senior editor at the magazine Military History.