Doctorow Finds ‘Utopia’

Novelist and outspoken open-source advocate Cory Doctorow sold North American rights to a new novel, Utopia, to Patrick Nielsen Hayden at Tor Books. Hayden brokered the deal with Russell Galen at Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency, and Tor is planning to publish the title in early 2017. The novel, which marks Doctorow’s first solo adult fiction effort since 2009’s Makers, is set in the latter part of this century; Hayden described it as a “big, sprawling story” about what happens when advancements in technology make peace and abundance for all a possibility, allowing humans to “simply walk away from the systems of work and coercive authority that have run the world since agriculture began.”

HMH Signs New Sharratt

Nicole Angeloro at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt nabbed North American rights to Mary Sharratt’s Ecstasy: A Novel of Alma Mahler. Its subject, the early-20th-century Viennese socialite who counted composer Gustav Mahler among her three husbands, was, HMH said, “one of the most notorious and controversial women of her time.” The publisher added that she was “an archetypical free spirit who brought the most eminent men of an era to their knees.” Jennifer Weltz at JVNLA Inc. represented Sharratt in the deal.

Kenyon Re-ups at SMP

Bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon closed a three-book deal with her current publisher, St. Martin’s Press. Through the deal, Kenyon will write three new books in her Dark-Hunter series. Monique Patterson took U.S., Canadian, and open-market rights from Robert Gottlieb at Trident Media Group. The first book in the deal, Dragonmark, is set for August 2016.

S&S Takes Catron’s Essays

Mandy Len Catron, whose January New York Times “Modern Love” essay “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This” went viral, sold a currently untitled book of essays to Simon & Schuster. Marysue Rucci at S&S U.S. and Nita Pronovost at S&S Canada preempted North American rights to the debut collection from Sam Stoloff at Frances Goldin Literary Agency. Catron, who blogs at The Love Story Project, will explore, Stoloff said, “our ideas about romantic love by asking how love stories work.” She will examine, he added, “neurobiology and social science, as well as... her own love stories, both past and present.”

Khadivi’s Tale of ISIS Youth To Bloomsbury

Anton Mueller at Bloomsbury took world English rights to Laleh Khadivi’s novel A Good Country from Ellen Levine at Trident Media Group. Khadivi, whose 2009 debut The Age of Orphans won both a Whiting Award and a Barnes & Noble Discover Award, follows a Kurdish-Iranian teen living in California who becomes radicalized and travels to Syria to join ISIS. Bloomsbury is planning to publish A Good Country in spring 2017.

Riggle Goes ‘Red’ for Polis

Kristina Riggle, who’s published five women’s fiction paperback originals at HarperCollins, sold a new novel to Polis Books. Jason Pinter took world English rights to Vivian in Red, which he categorized as literary commercial fiction, and plans to release, in hardcover and e-book, in fall 2016. The novel is about an aging Broadway producer, Milo Short, who becomes stunned at seeing his long-lost love. After the chance meeting, Milo’s granddaughter—a failed journalist now writing his biography—must find out how this mystery woman became the inspiration for her grandfather’s most beloved song. Kristin Nelson at Nelson Literary represented Riggle in the deal.