The first female president of the National Young Republicans—and a former aide to Bush adviser Karl Rove—has sold her first book, called Red, White and You: How to Be a Better American to Wiley's Tom Miller for North American rights. She is Dee Dee Benkie, currently a political consultant business adviser, and the sale was made by Alan Nevins at The Firm in Los Angeles.... There's a fascinating story behind the French translation of Yann Martel's major international bestseller Life of Pi. The edition just appearing from XYZ in Montreal, which will also be the one to appear later in Paris, was translated by the author's parents, Nicole and Emile Martel. Dad produced the first draft, which was then revised by Mom before Yann approved the final version; the book is already in 41 other languages.... Henry Holt president and publisher John Sterling has bought the next two books by noted environmentalist author Bill McKibben (The End of Nature) for Times Books. The first is Deep Economy, a study of the worldwide social and environmental impact of Americans' devotion to deep discounts on the goods they buy; the second is an essay collection. The world rights deal, which includes audio, was made with Gloria Loomis at Watkins Loomis.... Morrow's Claire Wachtel preempted U.S. rights in a debut thriller by British TV journalist Sue Walker, which had also been preempted earlier in London. It's called The Unit and is described as a cross between Christie's Ten Little Indians and Tartt's The Secret Life. The deal was made with agent Patty Moosbrugger for publication next September.... Scribner's Colin Harrison, a long-time admirer of the late short story writer Raymond Carver, has bought a major biography of him by literary biographer Carol Sklenicka, who has been working on it for years, interviewing over 200 people, and expects to deliver it in another two. The world rights deal was made with Coast agent Sandy Dijkstra.