DEAL OF THE WEEK
Hyperion Wins Johnson’s MG Series
In a seven-figure deal, Stephanie Lurie at Disney-Hyperion bought the first two books in a planned middle grade series by Leah Johnson (You Should See Me in a Crown). Johnson was represented by Patrice Caldwell at New Leaf Literary & Media in the North American rights agreement. The first book, Ellie Engle Saves Herself, was acquired after an 11-house auction. Caldwell described the series as “a superhero origin story in the tone of the Baby-Sitters Club.” After a freak earthquake hits the titular 12-year-old heroine’s small town, she finds that she has the ability to bring things back to life with her touch. Johnson is a YA author, and Ellie is her middle grade debut. The series is set to launch in spring 2023.
FROM THE U.S.
Flatiron Goes in for Talents Trilogy
After what Flatiron described as a “heated” auction, the Macmillan imprint’s Megan Lynch bought U.S. rights, for seven figures, to the Talents trilogy by an author writing under the pen name J.M. Miro. Ellen Levine at Trident Media Group brokered the deal. The first in the speculative fiction series is Ordinary Monsters, slated for 2022. The publisher said the novel is set in Victorian-era London and follows “a group of children with mysterious powers are hunted by a figure of darkness—a man made of smoke—and they must gradually discover the truth about their abilities, and the nature of the force that is stalking them.”
Gorrindo’s ‘Wives’ Marry Scout
For Scout, Hannah Braaten preempted world English rights to The Wives by Simone Gorrindo. The publisher said the memoir is about the author’s decision to leave her job in publishing in New York City and move to the South with her husband, who joined an elite Army combat unit there. Braaten called it “an intimate and complex portrait of friendship and marriage, and a searing, personal look into America today.” Gorrindo was represented by Michelle Brower at Aevitas. She has written for, among other publications, the New York Times and New York magazine. The Wives is set for spring 2023.
Lin ‘Parades’ to Custom House
Jessica Williams won Jami Nakamura Lin’s illustrated memoir The Night Parade at auction for William Morrow’s Custom House imprint. The adult title is expanded from the author’s Catapult column “The Monster in the Mirror.” Custom House said it “draws upon the Japanese myth of the Hyakki Yagyoˉ—the Night Parade of One Hundred Demons—to tell the braided stories of the author’s experience with bipolar disorder and her father’s death.” The memoir will be illustrated by Lin’s sister, Cori Nakamura Lin. Stephanie Delman at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates handled the North American rights agreement for the sisters.
Harrison Extends Her Stay with Ace
Bestselling author Kim Harrison inked a four-book, world rights agreement with Anne Sowards at Ace Books. Jennifer Jackson at the Donald Maass Literary Agency brokered the deal. The first two novels will be the 16th and 17th installments in Harrison’s Hollows urban fantasy series. The other two will launch a new urban fantasy series that, Ace said, “follows a woman who cleans up the bad luck left behind after magic has been cast.” The first installment of the new series, Three Kinds of Lucky, is set for fall 2023.
Nightfire Buys Compton’s ‘House’
Johnny Compton sold two novels to Daphne Durham at Tor’s Nightfire horror imprint in a six-figure, world rights preempt. Compton was represented by Lane Heymont at the Tobias Literary Agency. Heymont said the first novel, The Spite House, was pitched as “an #OwnVoices Black Southern gothic in the vein of The Others meets A Headful of Ghosts.” It follows “a father on the run with his two daughters, who agrees to move into a house to prove whether it is haunted.”