Lit Agency Assistant Lands Six Figures

In a two-book deal, Emily Krump at William Morrow paid six figures for North American rights to Abbie Greaves’s debut novel, The Silent Treatment. Greaves, an assistant at the literary agency Curtis Brown UK, was represented by Madeleine Millburn, who has an eponymous shingle. The book, Morrow said, follows Frank and Maggie, a couple who, after 40 happy years of marriage, are engaging in a six-month bout of the silent treatment. When Maggie becomes sick, however, Frank ends the fight. The book, the publisher went on, explores why the rift occurred and whether it’s become “too late to save Maggie.” A number of other deals have been closed for the book, including in Germany, Italy, Portugal, and the U.K.

Tor Nabs Quad by Doctorow
Cory Doctorow closed a six-figure agreement with Tor’s Patrick Nielsen Hayden for four new novellas. Russell Galen at Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency, who represented Doctorow, said the novellas will be published as a single print volume by Tor under “the overall title of Radicalized” and individually, in audio, by Macmillan Audio. Slated for a March 2019 release, the novellas will, Galen said, “provide a unique take on some of the most urgent and painful issues of our time.” The first novella in the collection, “Unauthorized Bread,” has been optioned for film by Topic Studios.

Moriarty’s Adult Debut Goes to Harper
Gravity Is the Thing, the first adult novel by YA author Jaclyn Moriarty, was acquired by Emily Griffin at Harper. The book, the publisher said, is about a single mother and café owner who has been receiving chapters in “a guidebook for living” from an anonymous source since the day her brother went missing 20 years earlier. Then, “in the wake of a move across continents and the devastating dissolution of her marriage, she receives an invitation to learn the ‘truth’ about the guidebook.” Jill Grinberg at Jill Grinberg Literary Management represented the author in the North American rights agreement, done on behalf of Tara Wynne at Curtis Brown Australia. The novel was pitched, Harper noted, as being “in the spirit of Maria Semple.” In the author’s native Australia, Pan Macmillan acquired the novel.

Amazon Lays Out Seven Figures for Ragan
Liz Pearsons at Thomas & Mercer paid seven figures for four books by bestselling author T.R. Ragan. The world English (as well as Chinese, French, German, Italian, Spanish, and Turkish) rights deal covers three titles in a new series featuring a journalist heroine named Sawyer Brooks, as well as a standalone novel. Ragan has, to date, published three series with Thomas & Mercer, which, the publisher noted, “have reached over 2.5 million readers.” The author was represented by Amy Tannenbaum at the Jane Rotrosen Agency.

Pride Wins Auction for Card’s ‘Ghosts’
Simon & Schuster’s Christine Pride won world rights, at auction, to Maisy Card’s debut short story collection, These Ghosts Are Family. The linked tales in the book, per Card’s agent, Monica Odom at Liza Dawson Associates, “incorporate elements of gothic fiction and Jamaican folklore.” The second book in the deal, a novel, said Odom, was “pitched as Big Little Lies from the POV of a group of immigrant home-health aides living in a wealthy retirement community in Florida.”

Scots Ollie and Harry Head to Norton
Scottish brothers Ollie and Harry Ferguson (ages five and eight, respectively), who became a sensation thanks to their viral Facebook page charting a set of 500 adventures they concocted, sold a book to Simon Boughton at Norton Young Readers. Ollie & Harry’s Marvellous Adventures, based on the brothers’ Facebook page (called “The Days Are Just Packed”), was preempted for world rights. Lucy V. Cleland at Kneerim & Williams brokered the sale for the book, noting that it is being cowritten by the authors’ father, MacNeill Ferguson, as well as with writer Garry Jenkins (A Home of Their Own). Cleland added that the title, slated for fall 2019, “blends classic outdoors fun with quirky applications of makerspace tech.”

Correction: The descriptions of the books in Maisy Card's two-book deal with Simon & Schuster have been updated to address errors in the original synopses. Also, T.R. Ragan closed a four-book deal with Amazon, not a three-book deal, as previously stated.

For more children’s and YA book deals, see our latest Rights Report.