Delaney’s ‘Heart’ Opens at S&G

For Spiegel & Grau, Julie Grau took North American rights to Rob Delaney’s memoir A Heart That Works. In the book, the comedian, best known for his role in the streaming series Catastrophe (which he also cocreated), tackles the death of one of his sons at age two after he was diagnosed with a brain tumor. The publisher described it as an “intimate, unafraid, and fiercely funny exploration of what happened—from the harrowing events to the vivid, bodily impact of grief and the blind, furious rage that follows, through to the fierce, unstoppable love that remains.” Sold by Pilar Queen at United Talent Agency, working with Avalon Artists Group, the memoir is slated for November 29.

Fine Moves to Flatiron

In an exclusive submission, Flatiron Books’ Caroline Bleeke acquired world rights to Julia Fine’s Maddalena and the Dark. The novel, Fine’s third (after last year’s well-received The Upstairs House), is set at an 18th-century all-girls orphanage in Venice known for producing world-class musicians. Flatiron said the story is told as a gothic fairy tale and “follows two students and the dangerous wager and boundless desire that draws them together.” Stephanie Delman at Trellis Literary Management brokered the deal for Fine, who was previously published by Harper.

Putnam Nabs Peterman’s ‘Negotiating’

Attorney and mediator Damali Peterman sold North American rights to Negotiating While Black: How to Be Who You Are to Get What You Want to Michelle Howry at Putnam. Peterman is CEO of the dispute-resolution firm Breakthrough ADR and was represented by Gillian MacKenzie at the Gillian MacKenzie Agency. The book, Putnam said, aims to be “the evergreen, inclusive book on negotiations” and will build on its author’s decades of professional experience resolving disputes. That, coupled with Peterman’s experiences as a Black woman, will make it, Putnam added, “a much more authentic guide that accounts for the bias that occurs in most negotiations” and will help “a large swath of readers negotiate to win, even when they’ve been underestimated.” Negotiating While Black is set for a spring 2024 release and has also been acquired in the U.K., at auction, by Bonnier’s Heligo Books imprint.

McCoy’s ‘Sky’ Falls at HQN

HQN’s Errin Toma nabbed world English rights to Even If the Sky Is Falling, edited by Taj McCoy. The collection features six stories by
different authors and explores, the Harlequin imprint said, “the chances a couple may take when they mistakenly believe the world is ending.” HQN described Even If the Sky Is Falling as appealing to “fans of Love Actually and all the best ’90s disaster films that end in a triumphant kiss.” It’s set for spring 2023 and was sold by Veronica Park at Fuse Literary. (McCoy, however, is now represented by Jemiscoe Chambers-Black at Andrea Brown Literary Agency.) Lane Clark, Charish Reid, and Denise Williams are among the contributors.

Berkley Wins Lillie’s ‘Sisters’

After an auction, Berkley’s Jen Monroe won two mysteries by Vanessa Lillie. The North American rights agreement was brokered by Jamie Carr at the Book Group. The novels will both feature Syd Walker, a Native American archaeologist who works for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The first book under contract, Blood Sisters, follows Walker as she returns to her hometown in Oklahoma to investigate the disappearance of both her sister and another local girl. Lillie is originally from Oklahoma and now lives in Rhode Island (where she writes a column for the Providence Journal); she is also an enrolled citizen of the Cherokee Nation. Blood Sisters is slated for fall 2023.