Jen Besser at Putnam has bought world rights to a new series by Marie Lu, author of the Legend trilogy. The new series, called The Young Elites, is set in a Renaissance-like world where magic is new, chaotic, and misunderstood, and three rival societies with supernatural abilities battle for power. And a girl transforms from an unwanted daughter into a fearsome leader, igniting panic and sparking war between seven nations. The first book is set for fall 2014; Kristin Nelson at Nelson Literary did the three-book deal.

Janine O'Malley at Farrar, Straus and Giroux acquired a debut YA novel, After the Woods by former journalist Kim Savage, in a pre-empt. It’s a psychological thriller about two friends in the aftermath of an abduction, where one risked her life to save the other and spent a night in the woods she wants to forget. Now, nearly a year later, a girl’s body is found, and dark secrets are tearing the best friends apart. Publication date is scheduled for 2015; Sara Crowe at Harvey Klinger did the two-book deal for world English rights.

Wendy Lamb of Random House's Wendy Lamb Books imprint has bought Nest, a middle-grade debut novel by Esther Ehrlich, in a pre-empt. The book, which Lamb calls “heartwrenching,” is set on Cape Cod in 1972, and tells of 10-year-old Naomi (known as Chirp, because she loves birds), her older sister Rachel, and their father and mother, whose world is rocked by a family tragedy. Publication is planned for August 2014; Susan Golomb of the Susan Golomb Literary Agency brokered the deal for North American rights.