This year American agents will be pushing a raft of notable books, including short fiction by Tom Hanks and Jeffrey Eugenides, new novels by Dean Koontz and Jennifer Egan, and nonfiction by Garry Kasaparov and Masha Gessen. Here’s a rundown of what people will be talking about in the rights center.
Aevitas Creative Management
(a new firm housing the agents formerly at Kuhn Project and Zachary Shuster Harmsworth)
The Energy That Heals Us by Jill Blakeway
U.S. publisher: HarperWave, fall 2018
An examination of how various forms of “energy medicine,” such as acupuncture and reiki, are being studied and assessed, from the founder and CEO of the Yin Ova Center (the largest Chinese medical practice in the country).
The Killing Drink by Jamey Bradbury
U.S. publisher: Morrow, spring 2018
A debut novel about, the agency explains, “a half-feral girl’s coming of age” and “the mystery of who or what is stalking her family in their remote Alaskan home.” Bradbury, who lives in Anchorage, Ala., has written for the Alaska Dispatch News.
The Fox Hunt by Mohammed Al Samawi
U.S. publisher: Morrow, spring 2018
Samawi, a young Muslim in Yemen who became a peace activist, tells the story of how four American millennials used social media to orchestrate a rescue mission for him after his country fell into civil war.
The Power of Onlyness by Nilofer Merchant
U.S. publisher: Viking, Aug.
Merchant, who made the 2013 Thinkers50 (a global ranking of leadership thinkers), explains, Baror says, how “each of us can unlock the capacity of even our wildest ideas to make a unique contribution to the world.”
The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve by Stephen Greenblatt
U.S. publisher: Norton, Sept.
The Pulitzer Prize–winning author examines how the brief tale of Adam and Eve in the King James Bible came to shape longstanding conceptions of human origin. Noting that the tale has been “both liberating and destructive,” the agency calls the book “a life history of one of the most extraordinary stories ever told.”
The Girl Last Seen by Nina Laurin
U.S. publisher: Grand Central, June
In this debut psychological thriller, Laurin, a literary blogger, follows Lainey Moreno, who, kidnapped at 10, was found pregnant at age 14. After putting her her child up for adoption, Lainey discovers that foggy memories of the crime begin to return when, 10 years later, she spots a young girl with a strong resemblance to herself on a missing persons poster.
Elyse Cheney Literary Associates
The Captain Class by Sam Walker
U.S. publisher: Random House, May
Walker (Fantasyland), the former global sports editor at the Wall Street Journal, sets out to answer the question of what makes certain sports teams great. The agency says he comes up with “a novel, counterintuitive theory based on decades of exhaustive research.”
The Windfall by Diksha Basu
U.S. publisher: Crown, June
This comedy of manners, a debut by a Columbia M.F.A., follows a family that receives a sudden influx of money and consequently discovers “what it means to be nouveau riche in modern India.”
The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Retook Russia by Masha Gessen
U.S. publisher: Riverhead, fall
Gessen (The Man Without a Face) follows four people born at a time when Russia seemed to be on the brink of democracy, but who, the agency says, instead saw their country retreat to “the old Soviet order” and “a devastating new strain of autocracy.”
The Clegg Agency
Come West and See by Maxim Loskutoff
U.S. publisher: Norton, 2018
The debut short story collection from Loskutoff, who has an M.F.A. from NYU, follows, the agency says, “a separatist uprising over lands right” in a trio of Western states that “tips the region into civil war.”
West by Carys Davies
U.S. publisher: On submission
The debut novel from Welsh author Davies (Some New Ambush) follows a separated father and daughter. When he leaves her with his sister, venturing into the wilderness in search of mythic creatures, she is forced, the agency explains, “to make her own way slowly out into a deceptively hostile world.”
My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh
U.S. publisher: Penguin Press, fall 2018
Set against the backdrop of the 2000 presidential election, this novel, from a Booker nominee, follows a young woman living on Manhattan’s Upper East Side who, the agency says, “attempts a yearlong hibernation with the help of an off-the-grid therapist.”
If You Leave Me by Crystal Hana Kim
U.S. publisher: Morrow, winter 2018
A debut novel, set in a Korean refugee camp, that follows a girl, her best friend, and her best friend’s older cousin. CB calls the book “a timely war story about what it means to be a refugee” and “a timeless love story with echoes of Wuthering Heights.”
No Time to Spare by Ursula K. LeGuin
U.S. publisher: HMH, Dec.
An essay collection by the iconic science fiction writer that CB says “gives us access to the author’s deepest thoughts on growing old in the U.S., the state of publishing, and our nation.”
How to Survive a Summer by Nick White
U.S. publisher: Blue Rider, June
Grad student Will Dillard has largely buried memories of the summer he spent at a camp intended to “cure” homosexuality. But when he finds out a horror movie based on the camp is hitting theaters, he’s forced to revisit his past—and his role in another camper’s death.
DeFiore & Company
The Pisces by Melissa Broder
U.S. publisher: Random/Hogarth, summer 2018
The debut novel from the poet and essayist follows a doctoral student writing her dissertation on Sappho who, after moving to Venice Beach, Calif., finds herself spending her nights frolicking on the beach with, and falling for, a merman. The agency says the book explores “why and how we stay alive and whether or not fantasy can actually kill you.”
Dig If You Will the Picture: Funk, Sex, God and Genius in the Music of Prince by Ben Greenman
U.S. publisher: Holt, Apr.
A biography of the pop legend, who died unexpectedly last year, that offers what the agency calls a “kaleidoscopic” examination of his legacy and “wide-ranging impact on our culture.”
Self Portrait 400 by Rachel Lyon
U.S. publisher: Scribner, spring 2018
In this novel set in Brooklyn’s Dumbo neighborhood circa the 1990s, a young photographer accidentally shoots a boy jumping off a building to his death. The resulting image could, the agency says, “jumpstart her career but devastate her most intimate friendship.”
Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency
The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See
U.S. publisher: Scribner, Mar.
Bestseller See (Snow Flower and the Secret Fan) follows a mother and daughter separated by circumstance in this novel set in a tea-growing region of China and in California.
Becoming Myself: A Psychiatrist’s Memoir by Irvin Yalom
U.S. publisher: Basic, Dec.
In his memoir Yalom (Creatures of a Day: And Other Tales of Psychotherapy), an existential psychiatrist and Stanford professor, explores, SDLA says, “the lessons learned over a life well lived.”
A Breath After Drowning by Alice Blanchard
U.S. publisher: Titan, Apr. 2018
In this work of psychological suspense, Boston psychiatrist Kate Wolfe is treating a troubled young girl connected to her own past. When, SDLA says, Wolfe thinks “she’s uncovered the chillingly depraved mind responsible for her sister’s death, a shocking twist brings her face-to-face with her deepest fear.”
Dystel, Goderich & Bourret
Grist Mill Road by Christopher J. Yates
U.S. publisher: Picador, Jan. 2018
Three childhood friends come back to the scene of an old crime, in what DGLM calls a “braided Rashomon-style thriller.”
The Impossible Vastness of Us by Samantha Young
U.S. publisher: Harlequin Teen, June
In the YA debut of the adult romance author, a girl who must move across the country to live with a rich stepfather and stepsister she’s never met learns, according to D&G, that “her life isn’t the only one that’s more complicated than it appears.”
When I Am Through with You by Stephanie Kuehn
U.S. publisher: Dutton, Aug. 2018
In this thriller, Kuehn (Charm & Strange), the agency says, delivers a “story of survival and the razor’s edge difference between perfect cruelty and perfect love.”
Stuart Krichevsky Literary Agency
(handled by Andrew Nurnberg Associates)
Our Final Destiny by Michio Kaku
U.S. publisher: Doubleday, winter 2018
This nonfiction work by a theoretical physics professor at CUNY explores, the agency explains, “the reality that humanity will one day need to leave the planet or perish” and examines how “technologies—from self-replicating robots to antimatter engines—will allow us to settle among the stars.”
Crux: A Cross Border Memoir by Jean Guerrero
U.S. publisher: One World, spring 2018
Guerrero, who won a PEN Literary Award in 2016 for this work (which was, at the time, an unpublished manuscript), examines her family legacy in, the agency says, “a literary memoir of crossing borders between cultures and languages, and between sanity and madness.”
False Times by Anna Merlan
U.S. publisher: Metropolitan, winter 2018
Merlan, who is on the editorial staffs at Jezebel and Gizmodo, attempts to understand why conspiracy theories continue to take hold among Americans and “reminds us of the seriousness with which some theories should be treated.”
Foundry Literary + Media
Gracious by Kelly Williams Brown
U.S. publisher: Rodale, Apr.
Brown (Adulting) spoke to people across the country—from everyday folks to celebrities—about being gracious, or, as Foundry put it, how to practice “the arts of kindness, thoughtfulness, good manners, humanity, and basic decency.”
Lost Flock on the Little River by Courtney Hargrave
U.S. publisher: Crown, fall
A companion book to the film Burden (starring Forest Whitaker and set to be released in April), about the real-life relationship between a black minister and a former KKK grand wizard. Hargrave’s book, Foundry says, seeks to “provide a more nuanced view of the place and time where this unlikely human connection took place: Laurens, S.C.”
Stolen Girls by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani and Vivianna Mazza
U.S. publisher: HarperCollins/Tegen, May
Nwaubani, a Nigerian journalist, and Mazza, an Italian journalist, tell a fictional tale about a girl taken in an actual event: the kidnapping, by Boko Haram, of more than 200 young women on Apr. 14, 2014, from their village in Nigeria. The book is based on the authors’ conversations with the survivors of the kidnapping.
You Are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero
U.S. publisher: Viking, Apr.
In the follow-up to her 2013 bestseller You Are a Badass, Sincero pulls nuggets from her own rags-to-riches transformation to help readers “unlock earning potential and get real results.”
The Gernert Company
by Daryl Gregory
U.S. publisher: Knopf, June
In this humorous novel about, Gernert says, “the ties that bind,” Gregory (Afterparty) follows a family of psychics who have to “save themselves from the CIA, the local mafia, and a skeptic hell-bent on discrediting them.”
Sourdough by Robin Sloan
U.S. publisher: FSG, Sept.
Sloan (Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore) follows a workaholic software engineer who, when she finds herself responsible for the fate of her local bakery, “encounters a secret place where food and technology meet,” according to the agency.
The Economists’ Hour: The Rise of a Discipline, the Failures of Globalization, and the Road to Nationalism by Binyamin Applebaum
U.S. publisher: On submission
Applebaum, the Washington correspondent for the New York Times, delivers his take on how, the agency explains, the “soft science” of economics is “responsible for what we see in global headlines today.”
Deep Thinking: Where Intelligence Ends and Human Creativity Begins by Garry Kasparov
U.S. publisher: Public Affairs, May
Kasparov offers his account, for the first time, of how he lost his chess game with the IBM supercomputer Deep Blue in 1996. The agency says the book, which is timed to the 20th anniversary of the match, “explores artificial intelligence generally” and highlights how the author has “evolved to embrace it.”
Sanford J. Greenburger Associates
Arthur and Sherlock: Conan Doyle and the Creation of Holmes by Michael Sims
U.S. publisher: Bloomsbury, Jan.
The book, which was a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice, is, SJGA says, a “deep dive into the creation of the world’s most famous detective and an exploration of the 26-year-old medical student who became the father of the modern mystery.”
Gather the Daughters by Jennie Melamed
U.S. publisher: Little Brown, July
This debut novel, by a psychiatric nurse, is set in a community “at the end of the world,” according to the agency, and is narrated by a group of girls who start questioning “the rules that bind them, and the island that constrains them.”
Feminist Baby by Loryn Brantz
U.S. publisher: Hyperion, Apr.
A comedic board book by the children’s author, former puppeteer, and associate editor at BuzzFeed that, SJGA explains, follows a young girl who is unafraid “to do her own thing and make as much noise as possible along the way.”
Bad Romance by Heather Demetrios
U.S. publisher: Holt, June
The latest from the author of the Dark Caravan series follows 16-year-old Grace, who, when she falls for Gavin, thinks she has found the perfect guy. Soon she realizes that Gavin has a dark side and that “her charming boyfriend can also be controlling and dangerous.”
(handled by U.K.-based Curtis Brown)
Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan
U.S. publisher: Nan Graham, Oct.
The newest novel from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author is, CB says, a “noir-ish thriller” set in 1930s and ’40s New York that “involves shipbuilding, organized crime, deep sea diving, and merchant shipping during World War II.”
Uncommon Type by Tom Hanks
U.S. publisher: Knopf, Sept.
The Academy Award–winning actor’s short story collection is built, loosely, around photographs of typewriters from his personal collection.
Anatomy of a Miracle by Jonathan Miles
U.S. publisher: Random/Hogarth, Sept.
The Dear American Airlines author returns with a novel about the miraculous recovery of a paralyzed veteran; CB called the work an exploration of “faith, science, celebrity and identity.”
The Lady’s Handbook for Her Mysterious Illness by Sarah Ramey
U.S. publisher: Doubleday, Sept.
Ramey, a musician who records as Wolf Larsen, chronicles her battle with a mysterious illness that doctors believed was imagined, in this memoir. The agency called the book “a revelation and inspiration for millions of women whose legitimate health complaints are ignored.”
The Silent Corner by Dean Koontz
U.S. publisher: Bantam, June
The first in a new series from the bestelling author follows an FBI agent named Jane Hawk who, the agency says, is “out to avenge her husband’s suspicious death.”
Bonfire by Krysten Ritter
U.S. publisher: Archetype, Nov.
Ritter (star of such shows as Jessica Jones and Don’t Trust the B---- in Apartment 23) offers up a work of psychological suspense in which, Inkwell says, a woman is “forced to confront her past in the wake of small-town corruption.”
Good Habits, Bad Habits by Wendy Wood
U.S. publisher: Flatiron, 2019
Wood, a professor of psychology and business at USC, is, Inkwell says, considered “the world’s foremost authority on habits.” In her book she explains “the mysterious inner workings of habits and shows us how to be happier, healthier and more successful.”
Janklow & Nesbit
(handled by Cullen Stanley International)
South and West by Joan Didion
U.S. publisher: Knopf, Mar.
In these extended excerpts from the author’s notebooks, readers get a glimpse, the agency explains, “into the mind and process of a legendary writer.”
Fresh Complaint: Stories by Jeffrey Eugenides
U.S. publisher: FSG, Oct.
The debut short story collection from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author explores topics he has traversed in his celebrated novels, J&N says, such as “the crises of adolescence, sexual identity, self-discovery, family love, and what it means to be an American in our times.”
Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong
U.S. publisher: Holt, July
In her debut novel, Khong, a food journalist and former executive editor of Lucky Peach, follows an adult daughter who returns home to help her mother care for her father, a history professor recently diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. The agency called the book “funny and inescapably touching.”
The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
U.S. publisher: Del Rey, Jan.
In this debut novel, set in a remote Russian village, a young girl named Vasilisa spends her nights listening to fairy tales. After her mother dies and her new stepmother forbids talk of the spirits that dominated the stories Vasilisa loved, she senses that “more hinges on the family’s rituals than anyone knows.”
Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency
Ecstasy: A Novel of Alma Mahler by Mary Sharratt
U.S. publisher: HMH, spring 2018
A work of historical fiction about the wife of Gustav Mahler who was a muse to some of the early 20th century’s most famous artists, including painter Gustav Klimt and poet Franz Werfel. JVNLA says Alma Mahler stands as “one of the most notorious and controversial women of her time.”
Turf by Elizabeth Crane
U.S. publisher: Soft Skull, June
The new short story collection from Crane (The History of Great Things) pivots, JVNLA says, “from micro to macro, humor to tragedy, past to present” and “mixes an off-kilter sensibility with a heartbreaking reality.”
D’Arc: War With No Name by Robert Repino
U.S. publisher: Soho, May
Repino continues the story he began with his 2015 novel Mort(e), which follows the titular housecat and former PI and is set against a war, launched by a colony of ants, intended to wipe out human beings. D’Arc, JVNLA says, is set in the aftermath of The War With No Name.
The Romanov Empress by C.W. Gortner
U.S. publisher: Ballantine, spring 2018
The bestselling historical fiction novelist follows the story of the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna, mother of Nicholas II, the last emperor of Russia, who abdicated in 1917.
Zoë Pagnamenta Agency
The House of Government: A Saga of the Russian Revolution by Yuri Slezkine
U.S. publisher: Princeton Univ., fall
Slezkine, who is Russian-born and a professor at UC Berkeley, offers a 1,000-page-plus take on the Russian Revolution as seen, the agency explains, through “Moscow’s House of Government—where the Soviet government housed top Bolshevik officials and their families.”
Forsaking (Almost) All Others: A History of Sex, Love, and Friendship, After Marriage by Melissa Mohr
U.S. publisher: Basic, 2019
In this cultural history of romantic relationships, Mohr (Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing) takes a stand, the agency says, against “the strictness of modern-day monogamy.”
The Challenge Culture: Questioning Everything Without Trashing Anything by Nigel Travis
U.S. publisher: PublicAffairs, fall 2018
The British CEO of Dunkin’ Brands (parent company of Baskin Robbins and Dunkin’ Donuts), details, the agency says, how to create “an environment of productive questioning and civil discourse.”
Jane Rotrosen Agency
The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah
U.S. publisher: St. Martin’s, Feb. 2018
The latest from the bestselling author of The Nightingale.
I Know a Secret by Tess Gerritsen
U.S. publisher: Ballantine, Aug.
The author’s popular crime-solving pair of Jane Rizzoli and Maura Isles return in this thriller to investigate the murder of a horror film producer.
Mind Game by Iris Johansen
U.S. publisher: St. Martin’s, Oct.
This thriller from the bestselling author features her Jane MacGuire character (the adopted daughter of another series anchor character, Eve Duncan).
Victoria Sanders & Associates
The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter
U.S. publisher: HarperCollins, Aug.
The newest thriller from the bestseller who, the agency notes, has sold 35 million books worldwide.
The Undertaker’s Daughter by Sara Blaedel
U.S. publisher: Grand Central, winter 2018
In this, the first in a new trilogy, the bestselling Danish crime writer follows a flawed central character in a book, the agency says, about “loss, secrecy, guilt, and the power and lure of family.”
The Freedom Broker by K.J. Howe
U.S. publisher: Quercus, Feb.
Howe, the executive director of ThrillerFest, follows the gifted kidnapping and recovery specialist Thea Paris in this novel. When her oil magnate father is nabbed off his yacht, Paris must, the agency says, navigate “the most urgent rescue mission of her life.”
Trident Media Group
Gateway to the Moon by Mary Morris
U.S. publisher: Doubleday/Talese, spring 2018
This novel from Morris (The Jazz Palace) follows a Spanish Jew who escapes the Inquisition when he’s hired as an interpreter by Christopher Columbus in 1492. She weaves the story of his family—which ultimately makes its way to New Mexico—with a 1992-set tale of a teenage amateur astronomer.
Front Desk by Kelly Yang
U.S. publisher: Scholastic/Levine, spring 2018
Yang based this middle grade novel, about a 12-year-old whose immigrant parents manage a California motel, on her own life; the agency pitched it as “Eloise meets Fresh Off the Boat.”
As You Wish by Jude Devereaux
U.S. publisher: Mira, Feb. 2018
The bestselling historical romance author delivers a tale about three women who, the agency says, “go back in time to change three formative weeks in their lives,” but, in doing so, realize that “changing the past isn’t as easy as it seems.”
The Most Notable Traitors: The Germans Who Defied Hitler by Gordon Thomas and Greg Lewis
U.S. publisher: NAL (no pub date available at press time)
Thomas and Lewis chronicle tales of everyday Germans—from aristocrats to factory workers and writers to housewives—in the resistance, who, the agency explains, “nobly stood against their own nation in a time of war.”
Ziggy by Lexi Freimann
U.S. publisher: Ecco (no pub date available at press time)
A debut novel from an Australian with an M.F.A. from Columbia, Ziggy is a literary satire, WH explains, about an Australian schoolgirl “coming of age and confronting the maze of identity politics, intersectional feminism and technology.”
A People’s History of the Vampire Uprising by Raymond Villareal
U.S. publisher: Little, Brown, 2018
In this debut novel, Villareal offers an oral history of a rising vampire race. WH says the book, which has already been optioned for film (by Fox), features a range of narratives from the CDC and FBI to a Vatican librarian and TMZ.
A Map of the Dark by Karen Ellis
U.S. publisher: LB/Mulholland, spring 2018
A psychological thriller about female FBI agent Elsa Myers, who is trying to juggle the case of a kidnapped teenager with the sudden health issue of her father, a man who, WH says, “holds a secret to Elsa’s own dark adolescence.”
My Life, My Love, My Legacy by Corretta Scott King
U.S. publisher: Holt, Jan.
In a memoir as told to her friend, Rev. Barbara Reynolds, the civil rights activist and wife of Martin Luther King Jr. delivers a love story and a family saga.
The Wylie Agency
Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
U.S. publisher: Knopf, Mar.
Written as a letter to Adichie’s friend, who asked the author how to raise her daughter as a feminist, Dear Ijeawele features 15 suggestions on how to, the agency explains, “empower a daughter to become a strong, independent woman.”
The Future Home of the Living God by Louise Erdrich
U.S. publisher: Harper, Nov.
About an Ojibwe woman who finds herself pregnant under the rule of a dystopic government rounding up all pregnant women, this novel, the agency says, is a “powerful and necessary story of women seeking agency against all odds.”
An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power by Al Gore
U.S. publisher: Rodale, July
This companion to the documentary of the same name (also set for July) by the former vice president delves into climate change and the “crisis that is now being experienced around the world on a daily basis.”
The Golden House by Salman Rushdie
U.S. publisher: Random House, Sept.
In this novel, which, the agency says, is “cinematic in scope,” the celebrated author explores “issues of identity, immigration, and family with his characteristic flair and unique insight.”
Correction: This article has been updated to reflect the fact that the agency formerly known as Dystel & Goderich Literary Management is now called Dystel, Goderich & Bourret. It has also been updated to reflect the correct title of Samantha Young's book, The Impossible Vastness of Us. Additionally, an earlier version of this article misspelled the names of authors Loryn Brantz and Karin Slaughter.