A Soldier's Teacher
David Lipsky'sAbsolutely American helped put West Point back on publishers' radar; the journalist's account of his four years there was on the New York Times bestseller list for five weeks in the summer of 2003. Now Elizabeth Samet, a West Point English professor, has written Just a Shot Away: One Teacher's Story of War and Peace, which Eric Chinski at FSG just preempted from agent David Kuhn at Kuhn Projects. The memoir will describe Samet's past eight years at the academy, including the struggle of students and colleagues alike to deal with the meaning of the war in Iraq. Kuhn sold North American rights in this six-figure deal.—M.T.
How to "Do"
Glamour magazine hopes to capitalize on the ongoing popularity of the "Dos and Don'ts" page of the magazine (their "Dos and Don'ts"—themed issue this summer was the highest-selling issue of the year, and inspired a TV special on the E! channel) with the next logical franchising step: a book. Gotham Books plans to publish How to Be a Do and Not a Don't by Cindi Leive and the editors of Glamour next fall; the book will be produced by Melcher Media. Staying true to the concept's formula, it will feature plenty of photographs of "train wreck" fashion along with original content on how to avoid such pitfalls. Bill Shinker acquired the book in a preemptive bid from Mark Reiter at PFD US. —M.T.
The Real Daltrey
Stateside agent-to-the-stars Dan Strone of Trident Media Group is selling Who Me?—a memoir by The Who frontman Roger Daltrey. Interested editors had to make the trek to Trident's midtown office to read the 20-or-so—page proposal. An editor who read it called Daltrey the "clean-living straight arrow" of the band. No decapitated bats in this one. —J.A.
Diana Baroni, editorial director of the new Warner Wellness imprint, has acquired a new book by Time medical columnist and CNN senior medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta, M.D. Entitled Chasing Life, the book will take readers to the front lines of the war on aging and the search for longevity, and will offer advice on achieving "practical immortality." Baroni bought world rights from Robert Barnett of Williams & Connolly; publication is set for spring 2007. —M.T.
Two First Novels
In a preempt after 24 hours, Reagan Arthur at Little, Brown bought world rights to Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris from agent Julie Barer. Ferris is a recent grad of the MFA program at UC Irvine, where Geoffrey Wolff is already singing his praises. The novel, about a group of co-workers in a Chicago ad agency, is narrated in the first-person plural.
Lee Boudreaux at Ecco bought North American rights, at auction, to The September of Shiraz by Dalia Sofer from David McCormick at Collins McCormick. Set in Tehran during the aftermath of the 1979 revolution and based on the author's own experiences, the novel follows an Iranian family as they cope with the father's false imprisonment and flee their homeland. —M.T.
Norman Pearlstine, editor-in-chief of Time Inc., has sold Off the Record: The Use and Misuse of Anonymous Sources, in the first major deal related to the Valerie Plame case, to Nan Talese for her imprint at Doubleday, via Lynn Nesbit. Talese acquired North American rights for low-six-figures.