DEAL OF THE WEEK
Harper Buys Raskin Memoir
In a world rights agreement, Congressman Jamie Raskin sold his memoir, Unthinkable, to Lisa Sharkey at Harper. The book, which Matt Harper will edit, is slated for January 4, and will, the publisher said, chronicle the tumultuous start of 2021 for the politician, a 45-day period in which he confronted the loss of his son to suicide, survived the Capitol riot, and went on to introduce an article of impeachment against then president Donald Trump. The book, subtitled Trauma, Truth, and the Trials of American Democracy, is, Raskin said, “a labor of love written to capture the dazzling life of a brilliant young man in crisis, whom we lost forever, and the struggle to defend a beautiful nation in crisis, a democracy that we still have the chance to save.” Harper added that the book is “at turns a moving story of a father coping with loss, and a vital reminder of the sacrifice, perseverance, and vision that our constitutional democracy demands from all of us.” Raskin did not use an agent in the deal.
Brown’s ‘Atlas’ Navigated at RH
Bestseller Brené Brown (Daring Greatly) sold Atlas of the Heart to Random House’s Ben Greenberg in a North American rights agreement. William Morris Endeavor’s Suzanne Gluck negotiated the deal with Greenberg for the book, which is subtitled Mapping Meaningful Connection and the Language of Human Experience. Random House said that, in the work, set for November, Brown “takes us on a journey through 87 of the emotions and experiences that define what it means to be human,” while outlining “an actionable framework for meaningful connection.” RH added that the author paints “a universe where we can share and steward the stories of our bravest and most heartbreaking moments with one another in a way that builds connection.”
LB Visits McKenzie’s ‘Olive Grove’
Little, Brown’s Ben George nabbed Moses McKenzie’s debut novel, An Olive Grove in Ends, in a North American rights agreement from Rebecca Folland at U.K. publisher Headline. The book follows a young man of Jamaican descent, living in Bristol, England, whose attempt to escape his past as a drug dealer is derailed when he’s blackmailed by his girlfriend’s father. Comparing the author, a 23-year-old Bristol native, to Zadie Smith, George said McKenzie recalls her “in the vibrancy and invention of his writing and the vividness with which he brings to life this teeming urban neighborhood.” Olive Grove is slated for a 2022 release.
Murphy, Simone Team on Plus-Size Series
For high six figures, Avon’s May Chen preempted two books in a new romance series by Julie Murphy (Dumplin’) and Sierra Simone (the Priest series). John Cusick at Folio Literary management, who represented the author in the world English rights agreement, called the line a “plus-size romance,” and said the first book, Bee Merry, features a 24-year-old plus-size adult film star named Bee Hobbes. In Bee Merry, the heroine, Cusick said, “finds her chance at love when she’s cast opposite her childhood boy band crush in a squeaky-clean holiday movie.”
Coll Sells Final Afghanistan Book
Steve Coll sold a new book about Afghanistan that will complete the trilogy he began with his 2004 Pulitzer Prize winner, Ghost Wars. The currently untitled book, which Penguin Press’s Ann Godoff acquired in a world rights agreement brokered with agent Melanie Jackson (who has an eponymous shingle), will, Penguin explained, continue the through line of events woven through Ghost Wars and then Directorate S, the second book in the series. Elaborating, the publisher said: “With the restoration of Taliban rule and the final collapse of American ambition in Afghanistan, Steve Coll’s panoramic and investigative chronicle of the U.S. misadventure in Central Asia requires a final volume.” The new book begins with the election of Donald Trump in 2016, and moves through “the fall of Kabul and beyond.”