Sourcebooks has acquired worldwide English rights to Chasing Red, an adult novel by Canadian author Isabelle Ronin, which was the most-read story on Wattpad last year. According to Sourcebooks, Chasing Red had over 126 million reads by the Wattpad community in 2016.
After making some revisions and adding new content, Sourcebooks will publish Chasing Red in two volumes, releasing the first part of the book this September and the conclusion in November.
Sourcebooks cited the continued buildup of interest in the book as the reason it acquired the title. Ronin originally serialized her story, but once it was completed in early 2016 interest in Chasing Red grew even more, Sourcebooks said. “The numbers alone for Chasing Red are extraordinary. This story has touched millions of readers and is attracting new reads every week,” Sourcebooks CEO Dominique Raccah said.
Ashleigh Gardner, head of partnerships for Wattpad Studios, noted that rights to the book have also been acquired by Hachette Livre, HarperCollins Germany, Penguin Random House Grupo Editorial, and Mondadori.
Chasing Red tells the story of “cynical straight-A college student Veronica “Red” Strafford,” who is offered a place to stay by “notorious basketball player Caleb Lockhart” after she gets kicked out of her apartment, Sourcebooks said. After she moves in “their close quarters create a problem when he pursues her, and she is far from ready to open up about her painful past.”
Sourcebooks first partnered with Wattpad in 2013 when it began publishing its authors under the Sourcebooks Fire young adult imprint. Recent books by Wattpad authors released by Sourcebooks include two young adult titles by Natasha Preston. The Cellar and The Cabin have had solid runs on young adult bestsellers lists and have sold hundreds of thousands of copies.