A cookbook by bestselling novelist Pat Conroy is his latest, taken on by his regular publisher Nan A. Talese for her own imprint at Doubleday. It's a compilation of family memories and stories, plus 100 recipes tested and offered by his longtime friend Suzanne Williamson, and the deal was put together for North American rights by agent Marly Rusoff .... Another Doubleday editor, Gerry Howard, bought a memoir called Ghosting by British publishing assistant Jenny Erdal, whose writing life has consisted of work published under others' names, including four books, a newspaper column and many articles and stories. Howard describes it as a wonderfully written book and bought it from Jamie Byng at Edinburgh's Canongate.... Morrow publisher Michael Morrison made a "significant" deal for North American rights in two books by debut thriller author Will Staeger, an exec at ESPN with a Hollywood background. The first book is a CIA counter-terrorist tale called Painkiller, and the North American rights deal was made with Matthew Guma at Arthur Pine Associates.... A comic first novel called Indecision by Benjamin Kunkel, the story of a terminally indecisive young man fired from his job who goes to Ecuador and experiences a romantic epiphany there, was preempted jointly by Random's Dan Menaker and Lee Boudreaux ; North American rights were bought from Elyse Cheney at Sanford Greenburger.... Two further thrillers in a series begun by the not-yet-published Through Violet Eyes by Stephen Woodworth were sold by agent Jimmy Vines to the publisher of the first book, Anne Groell at Bantam Dell; the alternative reality tales have supernatural elements.... No fewer than six bidders turned out for a three-day auction of The Official Rock Paper Scissors Strategy Guide by the founders of the World RPS Society, brothers Graham and Douglas Walker. The winner (perhaps her outstretched "paper" hand beat the other houses' closed-fist "rocks") was S&S/Fireside's Amanda Patten, who bought the guide from Laurie Akemier at DeFiore & Company, for publication this fall.

Hot Deals will not appear next week.