Donoghue’s ‘Heart’ Opens at LB

In a world rights agreement, Little, Brown’s Judith Clain bought Emma Donoghue’s Learned by Heart, a work of historical fiction set to publish in August 2023. The novel, the publisher said, is about “the real-life love story of historical figures Eliza Raine and Anne Lister.” Clain added that the work is “an astonishing and moving story about forbidden love and how it transforms the lives of two young women in totally different ways.” Raine, an orphan and heiress, met Lister (whose diaries serve as the source material for the HBO series Gentleman Jack) in 1805 at age six when the pair were attending a school for girls in York, England. Donoghue, the bestselling author of Room, was represented by Kathy Anderson at Anderson Literary Agency.

Murray’s Regencies Heat Up Avon

Amita Murray inked a six-figure, three-book agreement with Avon Books. Lucia Macro won, at auction, U.S., Canadian, and open market rights to a trilogy of Regency romances that, Avon said, “center on the six mixed-race daughters of an English earl and his Indian mistress” and “delve into the lives, and loves, of each woman navigating 19th-century England.” Priya Doraswamy at Lotus Lane Literary brokered the agreement. The books are all currently untitled, with the first set to publish in summer 2023.

HarperVia Invests Chau’s ‘Fortune’

For HarperVia, Tara Parsons acquired world English rights to C.K. Chau’s Good Fortune. The novel is a reimagining of Pride and Prejudice set in New York City’s Chinatown in the early 2000s and follows, the publisher said, a young woman whose “fight against her neighborhood’s gentrification sets tensions ablaze in her familial and romantic life.” Isabel Kaufman at Fox Literary represented Chau, a pseudonym for a young woman who works in the book publishing industry. HarperVia added that Good Fortune, which is set to be released in summer 2023, “reads like Crazy Rich Asians from the opposite side of the class divide.”

Audible Desperately Seeking ‘Widows’

For Audible Originals, Aysha Choudary and Jeff Golick bought world audio rights to Desperate Deadly Widows. The work is a sequel to Audible Originals bestseller Young Rich Widows and follows, as the original does, four recently widowed women. Desperate Deadly Widows— created by Vanessa Lillie and cowritten by thriller writers Kimberly Belle, Layne Fargo, and Cate Holahan—follows the women, Audible said, as “they struggle to run a law firm in late 1980s Providence, R.I., and are drawn into a case when the mayor of Providence turns up dead in the champagne room of a strip club and his new wife, now a widow herself, is accused of his murder.” Representing the authors in the deal were Sharon Pelletier (who represents Fargo and was the point person on the deal) at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret, Jamie Carr (who represents Lillie) at the Book Group, Nikki Terpilowski (who represents Belle) at Holloway Literary, and Paula Munier (who represents Holahan) at Talcott Notch Literary Services.

Hogarth Translates Enriquez’s ‘Night’

For Hogarth, David Ebershoff bought North American rights to Our Share of Night by Argentinian author
Mariana Enriquez. The book, slated for February 2023, will be the author’s first novel translated from Spanish to English; the translation will be handled by Enriquez’s longtime translator of her short stories, Megan McDowell. Our Share of Night, sold by Maria Lynch at Casanovas Lynch, is, Hogarth said, “a family story, a horror story, and a story of the occult and the supernatural” that tells “the epic, genre-bending tale of a father and son outrunning their destiny in the brutal years of Argentina’s military dictatorship and its turbulent aftermath.”