Bloomsbury has acquired two book projects—a five-volume fantasy series and a short story collection—from the celebrated comics writer and novelist Alan Moore. The two projects were acquired by Bloomsbury U.K. editor-in-chief Paul Baggaley and Bloomsbury U.S. senior editor Daniel Loedel in a deal representing U.K. and North American rights. The deal has been reported to be worth six figures.
The first project, Illuminations, is a collection of short stories, each featuring “some kind of illumination or realization,” ranging from “ghosts and otherworldly creatures to the four horsemen of the apocalypse to the Boltzmann brains fashioning the universe at the big bang,” according to a Bloomsbury release. The book will be published in Fall 2022. The second project, Long London, will be a five-volume fantasy series set in an “atmospheric, mythical world of murder, magic and madness,” and will sweep “across the 20th century, starting in the shell-shocked and unravelled London of 1949, and following the populations of writers, criminals, artists, and magicians.” The first book in the series will be published in 2024.
Baggaley described Moore as “a legend” and “one of the most original and talented creative figures of the last 50 years.” Loedel added that the stories “stories in Illuminations are dazzlingly original and brimming with energy, and the Long London series promises to be epic and unforgettable, a tour-de-force of magic and history.”
Moore is best known as the author of such acclaimed graphic novels as the superhero epic Watchmen (with artist Dave Gibbons), the grim Batman/Joker graphic novel The Killing Joke (with artist Brian Bolland), and From Hell (with artist Eddie Campbell), which uses Jack the Ripper to prefigure the horrors of the 20th century. His most recent novel, Jerusalem, a massive 1,000-page work centered around his hometown of Northampton, England, was published by W.W. Norton/Liveright in 2016.
In a release announcing the deal, Moore said he was “bursting with fiction, bursting with prose,” adding that he “couldn't be happier with the new home that I've found at Bloomsbury: a near-legendary independent publisher with a spectacular list and a fierce commitment to expanding the empire of the word.”