Knopf has announced that it will publish two new novels by Cormac McCarthy in the fall. The Passenger is set for October 25 and Stella Maris for November 22. Both titles will also be published together, as a boxed set, on December 6. The novels, set eight years apart, tell, Knopf said, "one grand story of siblings Bobby and Alicia Western."

The late Sonny Mehta acquired U.S. rights from Amanda Urban at ICM Partners, and Jenny Jackson will edit the titles. Knopf said that the individual books will each get an announced printing of 300,000 copies, with the boxed set going to press for an announced 50,000 copies.

Elaborating on the books, Mehta's successor at Knopf, Reagan Arthur, called the titles "unlike anything Cormac McCarthy has written before," adding that they "represent two sides of the same narrative coin." She noted that the internal expectation is that the books will mark "the literary event of the year."

The Passenger, Knopf said, is about "a salvage diver, haunted by loss, afraid of the watery deep, pursued for a conspiracy beyond his understanding, and longing for a death he cannot reconcile with God." Stella Maris is "an intimate portrait of grief and longing, as a young woman in a psychiatric facility seeks to understand her own existence."