An entrepreneur turned thriller author, Jan MacLarty has just signed a two-book, six-figure world rights deal with Kevin Smith at Pocket Books for a debut called The Courier, starring a new series hero, Simon Leonidovich, and a sequel; his agent was Jane Dystel, and the first book will appear in hardcover next year.... A book by Harmony/Crown editor Jake Morrissey on the 16th-century architectural rivalry between two noted Romans, Bernini and Borromini, was bought, world rights, by Morrow's Henry Ferris from agent Suzanne Gluck at William Morris; it's scheduled for a 2004 publication.... Two new African-American titles made sales to different Simon & Schuster editors: R.M. Johnson's new novel, Dating Games, went to Geoff Kloske for publication next fall; the house has already done three of his books and bought this one for world English rights from agent Elaine Koster. And Marysue Rucci made a two-book deal for a first novel and a second book of stories by Alicia Erian; it was a North American rights sale by Peter Steinberg at JCA Literary.... Agent Marly Rusoff sold a book called Stalking the Divine by journalist and short story writer Kris Ohlson to Leigh Haber at Hyperion; it's the story of a skeptic whose encounter with a group of nuns in Cleveland, Ohio, brings her back to the possibilities of faith; the sale was for world rights.