In quick succession in recent days three different Random House editors signed new two-book deals with a newly minted bestselling author, a successful poet, a veteran political thriller writer and a first novelist who has won a major Irish literary award. The new bestseller was Britain's Sarah Dunant, whose Birth of Venus is currently riding high on the lists, and whose next two, also set in Renaissance Italy, were bought for world rights by Susanna Porter from U.K. agent Clare Alexander. Editor-in-chief Dan Menaker signed poet Deborah Garrison, whose A Working Girl Can't Win was a hit, to a pair of new collections, also for world rights, with David McCormick of Collins McCormick. And it was also Menaker who nailed down two new thrillers from Richard North Patterson, the first of which is A Certain God, about the dangers of extremists on the religious right; he bought world rights direct from the author. Lastly, Webster Younce made a two-book deal for a pair of novels by award-winning Irish author Colum McCann (Dancer). One of them will be his first novel, Zoli, about an epic journey by an exiled gypsy woman in postwar Europe, bought for the U.S. from Sarah Chalfant at the Wylie Agency.
Volume 251 Issue 17 04/26/2004