Levy on Google

S&S publisher David Rosenthal has acquired a new book by Steven Levy titled Searching for Google; Flip Brophy at Sterling Lord sold world rights, and senior editor Bob Bender will edit. Levy, chief technology writer at Newsweek, will tell how Google manages to realize its ambitions and how it generates new ideas and maintains a startup mentality in the face of explosive growth and increasing competition. The book has the full cooperation of Google’s top management. Levy is the author of numerous books, including Hackers, Insanely Great (the story of the Macintosh computer) and, most recently, The Perfect Thing, a look at the iPod. S&S has the new book scheduled for late 2009.

Huong Moves to Viking

Viking publisher Paul Slovak has signed up Duong Thu Huong for a new novel, The Zenith; Susanna Lea sold North American rights. The novel, a study of the thirst for absolute power, will juxtapose the story of the life and rise to power of Ho Chi Minh and his inner circle with the tale of an elder in a small Vietnamese town who dominates his village, only to find out that his own sons covet his fortunes. This is Huong’s fifth novel to be published in the U.S.; many consider her to be the most important living Vietnamese author. She was previously published here by Will Schwalbe at Morrow and Hyperion. Viking expects to publish The Zenith in 2010; two backlist titles, Memories of a Pure Spring and Novel Without a Name, are Penguin paperbacks.

Hot Cookbooks

Clarkson Potter senior editor Rica Allannic preempted world rights to David Chang and Peter Meehan’s Momofuku via Kim Witherspoon at Inkwell. The book will feature recipes and behind-the-scenes tales from the popular New York restaurants Momofuku Noodle Bar, Ssam and Ko by chef-owner Chang, winner of the Rising Star Chef award from the James Beard Foundation and Bon Appetit’s Chef of the Year 2007, and Meehan, of the New York Times. It’s tentatively slated for fall 2009.

Wiley senior editor Justin Schwartz bought world rights to a new book by Food Network star Ellie Krieger via Jane Dystel at Dystel & Goderich. This untitled book of easy, simple, healthy recipes will focus on fresh, flavorful ingredients that allow cooks to produce the biggest taste with the smallest effort. Krieger’s current book, The Food You Crave, debuted at #4 on the New York Times list, and she is also the author of Small Changes, Big Results. Tentative pub date is 2009.

Living off the Land

Jofie Ferrari-Adler at Grove bought the next, untitled book by Field & Stream columnist Bill Heavey via Chris Parris-Lamb at Gernert, who made the six-figure world rights deal. Describing his attempt to live exclusively off food he hunts, fishes and forages from the wild, Heavey will also take a broader look at the atavistic roots of hunting and gathering and how alienated we’ve become from the natural world. No pub date yet.

On a different tack, there’s agritourism. Clarkson Potter editorial director Doris Cooper bought world rights to Italian journalist Marella Caracciolo Chia and landscape and interiors photographer Oberto Gigli’s untitled book on Italy’s best, most beautiful “agriturismo” farms, via David Kuhn. Pub date is late 2009.

Perry Again to Ballantine

Random executive editor Susanna Porter bought four new Victorian mysteries by Anne Perry for Ballantine, two featuring Thomas and Charlotte Pitt (#26 and #27 in the series) and two featuring William Monk (#17 and #18 in that series). The books will follow publication of Perry’s stand-alone historical epic, The Sheen on the Silk, in 2010. Donald Maass made the seven-figure North American rights deal.

New Genres for Kenyon

Sherrilyn Kenyon, whose Dark-Hunter novels have been nationwide bestsellers, has made a deal for two YA novels, to be published by St. Martin’s Press as part of a new series called Nevermore. Senior editor Monique Patterson bought North American rights from Merrilee Heifetz at Writers House. SMP will also publish manga versions of two of Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter novels, Night Embrace and Night Pleasures. The mangas are due out in 2009. Kenyon’s newest Dark-Hunter book, Acheron, is due from SMP this August.

The Future of Democracy

Susan Rabiner made a world rights deal with Encounter publisher Roger Kimball for historian John Fonte’s Sovereignty or Submission: Will Americans Rule Themselves or Be Ruled by Others? Fonte, senior fellow at the Hudson Institute, will explain why the 21st century may see liberal democracy and the nation state come to exist in name only, and how it is possible that a postdemocratic United States may occur. Pub is 2009.

Healthy Choices

Michelle Wolfson, who recently left Artists & Artisans to start her own agency, just wrapped up an auction for Aimee Raupp’s Chill the F**k Out and Choose Health Now!; editor Anne Bohner at NAL won world rights. Raupp, a licensed acupuncturist and Chinese health specialist, will advise women in their 20s and 30s on choices that will help them look and feel better immediately and into their 40s, 50s and beyond.