DEAL OF THE WEEK
Morrow Goes ‘Magnolia’ for Frank
In a mid-six-figure agreement, Carrie Feron at William Morrow bought North American rights to Victoria Benton Frank’s debut, My Magnolia Summer. The novel is set on South Carolina’s Sullivan Island and follows, the publisher said, “three generations of South Carolina women, along with their loves and their family restaurant, in a tale of family bonds that is both spicy and heartfelt.” Benton Frank is the daughter of the late bestseller Dorothea Benton Frank and lives in South Carolina’s Low Country. She attended the French Culinary Institute and is married to a chef. My Magnolia Summer is slated for summer 2023. Frank was represented in the deal by Suzanne Gluck at William Morris Endeavor.
Coben Re-ups at Grand Central
Grand Central Publishing has struck a five-book, North American rights deal with Harlan Coben. Ben Sevier negotiated the agreement with Lisa Erbach Vance at the Aaron M. Priest Literary Agency, with the first book under contract set to publish in 2024. (Coben’s next thriller from GCP, I Will Find You, covered under a previous contract, releases in March 2023.) GCP said there are more than 80 million copies of Coben’s books—including The Boy from the Woods, Don’t Let Go, and the Myron Bolitar series—in print worldwide. Coben has also created and executive produced a number of streaming series based on his fiction.
Copeland Gets ‘Fund’-ed by St. Martin’s
Wall Street Journal investigative reporter Rob Copeland sold North American rights to The Fund: Ray Dalio, Bridgewater Associates and the Unraveling of a Wall Street Legend to Jennifer Enderlin at St. Martin’s Press. Dalio made headlines in October when he stepped down from Bridgewater Associates, the hedge fund he founded more than 40 years ago. The Fund peels back the curtain on the secretive hedge fund—one of the largest in the world—showing, per SMP, “what really goes on with Dalio and his cohorts behind closed doors.” Copeland reveals “a rarified world of wealth and power, where former FBI director Jim Comey kisses Dalio’s ring, recent Pennsylvania Senate candidate David McCormick sells out, and countless Bridgewater acolytes describe what it’s like to work at this fascinating firm.” The Fund, which will be edited by Tim Bartlett, is set for fall 2023. David Larabell represented Copeland in the agreement.
Alderman Looks to ‘Future’ at S&S
Naomi Alderman’s techno-thriller The Future was acquired by Simon & Schuster in a U.S. and open market rights agreement. Tim O’Connell bought the book from Simon Lipskar at Writers House, working on behalf of Veronique Baxter at U.K.-based David Higham Associates. Alderman’s 2017 novel The Power is being adapted for the small screen by Amazon (set to premiere in 2023, with Toni Collette in the lead role); it was named a best book of the year by numerous outlets, and won the Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction. The Future, S&S said, marries “white-knuckle narrative propulsion with an intellectually dazzling critique of the world we have made, in which a few billionaires profit on the lives of many and lead us willingly to our doom.” O’Connell added that the novel “is both a warning shot and galvanizing work of relentless entertainment.”
Grove Shreds with Lerner
For Grove Atlantic, Elisabeth Schmitz took North American rights to Betsy Lerner’s Shred Sisters. Lerner is an author and literary agent, and this book marks her debut as a novelist. Her previous titles include the 2016 memoir The Bridge Ladies, about her experience rebuilding her relationship with her mother as an adult. Grove said Shred Sisters explores the “unraveling of a family against the backdrop of one sister’s life with bipolar disorder, and her inextricable bond with her younger sister.” David Black at the David Black Agency represented Lerner.