Joan of Arc Revisited

Eric Simonoff of William Morris Endeavor sold North American rights to Kimberly Cutter's debut, The Maid: A Novel of Joan of Arc, to Andrea Schulz at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. The buzzed-about book, which follows the French peasant-turned-saint from her life as Jehanne of Lorraine through her time leading the French army, is, according to Simonoff, part historical fiction and part “meditation on proto-feminism, the power and burden of faith, and the exhilarating and devastating consequences of fame.” Cutter, who has an M.F.A. from the University of Virginia, has written for a number of magazines including Vanity Fair, New York and Harper's Bazaar.

Williams Suits Up, Twice

Agent Ike Williams, of Kneerim & Williams, just closed two deals for separate business books. Williams sold world rights to Jacque Murphy at Harvard Business Press to a currently untitled management work by the team at Forrester Research. The group, which did the 2008 title Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies, will focus on how to harness the creativity of employees and the energy of customers. The second deal is for Max Anderson's The MBA Oath, which Portfolio's Adrian Zackheim and Adrienne Schultz acquired, taking world rights. Anderson, who just graduated from Harvard Business School, got lots of press for a document he drafted for his class, similar to doctors' Hippocratic Oath, outlining the ethics he and his fellow future business executives should maintain. The document has been adopted by a number of business schools, and the book will expand on it.

Reorganization Re-examined

Paul Golob, editorial director of Times Books, bought North American rights, at auction, to The Packing Problem: Time, Money, and the Science of Scarcity, written by academics Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir—Mullainathan teaches at Harvard and Shafir at Princeton. The publisher calls the title a “paradigm-shifting book” about how people deal with scarcity and the habits we've developed that lead to “inefficient” decisions. The work is derived from the authors' comparison of time management to packing a suitcase and the need to remove one item before adding another. Agent Katinka Matson of Brockman Inc. brokered the deal.

Father Knows Best senior editor Justin Halpern sold his popular Twitter postings—turned—book, Shit My Dad Says, to Kate Hamill at It Books, who took world English rights at auction. The collection of gruff, funny and sometimes sneakily heartfelt musings from the author's 73-year-old dad got Halpern an online audience of more than 300,000 as well as press hits from papers like the Wall Street Journal and L.A. Times. Agent Byrd Leavell of the Waxman Agency said the book, slated to pub next Father's Day, will also feature “longer stories in a David Sedaris, Chelsea Handler vein.”


Agent Jodie Rhodes sold North American rights to debut novelist Bob Rambaugh'sSaving Sarah to Phoebe Yeh at HarperCollins Books for Children. In the YA work, a 14-year-old boy tormented by his father looks to murder as a solution after the “system” fails him and the father sets his sights on the boy's younger sister.... Former newspaper man Tom Ryan had his memoir, Following Atticus, pre-empted by Cassie Jones at William Morrow. In the book Ryan adopts a pooch, a miniature schnauzer, to join him on an expedition to hike all of New Hampshire's mountains as part of a charity effort honoring the memory of a dead friend. Ryan has blogged about the experience at and is appearing next month on Animal Planet to discuss the trip; Brian DeFiore, of DeFiore and Company, did the deal.