DEAL OF THE WEEK
Randall Goes ‘Country’ at S&S
For Simon & Schuster’s Black Privilege Publishing imprint, Nicholas Ciani took world rights to Alice Randall’s My Black Country. Randall (Black Bottom Saints), a bestselling author and songwriter, was represented by Dupree Miller’s Alexandria Kominsky. S&S said the book is a “hybrid work of research and personal history” that exhumes “the Black roots of country music.” Randall structures the narrative “through her travels across the nation to trace the story of America’s ‘First Family of Black Country’ ” and reckon with her own complex past.
Gregory Gets ‘National’ at HarperVia
HarperVia took world rights to Philippa Gregory’s Normal Women. The agreement originated out of the bestselling historical fiction author’s native U.K., with Arabelle Pike at HarperCollins UK imprint William Collins acquiring the book and Zahra Gibbery at Vivat Publishing representing Gregory. Gretchen Schmid at HarperVia will edit the title in the U.S., and it’s set for release here in February 2024. The publisher said National Women tells the story of the U.K. “through the stories of women soldiers, jousters, guild widows, nuns... and ‘female husbands’ who for centuries blazed the trail for women today.”
Holt Signs Menger-Anderson
Amy Einhorn at Henry Holt preempted world rights to The Expert of Subtle Revisions by Kirsten Menger-Anderson. The publisher said the debut novel, sold by Heather Jackson at Heather Jackson Literary Agency, is “a taut, genre-bending historical mystery perfect for readers looking for their next dark academia fix” and is “steeped in math and misfortune.” Menger-Anderson’s 2008 short story collection, Doctor Olaf van Schuler’s Brain, was a finalist for the Northern California Book Award. The Expert of Subtle Revisions is slated for August 2024.
Makos’ ‘Wave’ Hits Ballantine
Adam Makos (A Higher Call) sold Tidal Wave to Mary Reynics at Ballantine in a world rights agreement. The publisher said the nonfiction book tells “the dramatic tale of a young American B-24 crew who crashed during a bombing raid against the Ploesti oil fields in Romania during WWII and their journey to escape with the help of Romanian allies.” The author did not use an agent in the deal, and Tidal Wave is slated for spring or summer 2025.
Little, Brown Swims in Cordalis’s ‘Water’
Little, Brown’s Tracy Sherrod took world rights at auction to Amy Bowers Cordalis’s Child of Big Water. Cordalis, a member of the Yurok Tribe in California, was represented by Mark Tauber at the Watermark Agency. The publisher said the book—subtitled Indigenous Resistance, Resilience and Stewardship, How a Tribe and a Family Fought to Win the World’s Biggest River Restoration Project—tells the story, through the voices of Cordalis’s family, of “a century of her tribe’s subjugation and the battle they took upon themselves to... rescue their heritage.” Members of the tribe have been fighting government agencies for decades over the damming of irrigation waters, and last year Congress ordered that a dam be removed from the Klamath River. Child of Big Water is slated for December 2024.
Bloomsbury Nabs Pearson’s Debut
In a North American rights agreement, Bloomsbury’s Daniel Loedel bought Joanna Pearson’s adult debut Bright and Tender Dark. The publisher said the literary mystery is “about the death of a charismatic young college student and its long, sensational aftermath in a community possessed by questions of the unknown.” Pearson, a psychiatrist and Drue Heinz Literature Prize winner, was represented by Marya Spence at Janklow & Nesbit Associates.
Correction: An earlier version of this article misstated the title of Philippa Gregory's new book; it's Normal Women, not National Women.