Pearl by Simon Armitage published by Faber & Faber

Congratulations go to Simon Armitage on the recent publication of Pearl, a new version of the Middle English poem.

Simon Armitage's version of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight garnered front-page reviews across two continents and confirmed his reputation as a leading translator.

This new work is an entrancing allegorical tale of grief and lost love, as the narrator is led on a Dantean journey through sorrow to redemption by his vanished beloved, Pearl. Retaining all the alliterative music of the original, a Medieval English poem thought to be by the same anonymous author responsible for Gawain, Pearl is here brought to vivid and intricate life in care of one of the finest poets writing today.

Praise for Sir Gawain and the Green Knight:

'Takes you back closer to something of the thrill and the wonder the poem would have had in the days when it was composed. It might even be the best translation of any poem I've ever seen . [Armitage] was put on the planet to translate this poem.' Guardian

'[Armitage] captures his dialect and his landscape and takes great pains to render the tale's alliterative texture and drive . He has given us an energetic, free-flowing, high-spirited version.' New Yorker

Watch above as Simon reads an extract from Pearl.

Powerful new novel from Meena Kandasamy to Atlantic Books

Atlantic Books Editor James Roxburgh, has acquired UK and Commonwealth rights (excluding India) in Meena Kandasamy’s second book, When I Hit You, or A Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife from David Godwin at DGA. Atlantic will publish in Spring 2017.

Informed and inspired by her own experiences, Kandasamy’s follow up to the acclaimed Gypsy Goddess is a dazzling and provocative novel of an abusive marriage. Seduced by politics and poetry, the unnamed narrator falls in love with a university professor and agrees to be his wife, but what for her is a contract of love is for him a contract of ownership. As he sets about reducing her to his idealised version of a kept woman, bullying her out of her life as an academic and writer in the process, she attempts to push back – a resistance he resolves to break with violence and rape.  

“This book undid me. It is as fierce, smart, graceful and courageous as its author,” Roxburgh commented. “It is a dissection of what love meant, means and will come to mean when trust is undermined by violence; a brilliant, throat-tightening feminist discourse on battered faces and bruised male egos; a scathing portrait of traditional wedlock in modern India. To my mind, there will not be a book published next year that is more important, more ugly but more profoundly beautiful than this one.” 

Keep up to date with Meena Kandasamy here

Walker Books buys Kelly McCaughrain's Flying Tips For Flightless Birds

Walker Books has bought a teen novel by debut author Kelly McCaughrain.

McCaughrain’s Flying Tips for Flightless Birds is a novel about flying-trapeze double-act and brother/sister twins, Finch and Birdie Franconi – and their friend Hector Hazzard. After Birdie’s terrifying accident on the trapeze, Finch and Hector must work together to save the circus school and put on the biggest show ever.  The story is told in two voices – through Birdie’s blog and Finch’s narrative. It’s a novel about teen friendships and first romance, and ultimately that you can’t please everyone, one person will do.

Senior Fiction editor, Lucy Earley acquired the UK and Commonwealth rights in a two-book deal from Kirsty McLachlan at DGA Ltd. and will publish the first book in Autumn 2017.

Lucy Earley said: "We're juggling for joy to welcome Kelly to the Walker Ficton list - she's an original new voice in teen fiction and Flying Tips For Flightless Birds is an irresistible mix of heart, humour and characters readers will want to be mates with as they walk the high wire of teen life - all served up with a dash of kooky circus magic.

Kelly has a rare light touch, both entertaining and moving, and an infectious storytelling energy which readers will not want to resist."

Kelly McCaughrain said: I’m thrilled to be a Walker Books author! It’s every writer’s dream to work with a publisher with so much expertise and passion for books, and to be part of their brilliant catalogue of authors is mind blowing.’

Flying Tips for Flightless Birds is McCaughrain’s first book, she lives in Belfast and works with disabled students in further education and is studying English and Creative Writing at Queens University. When she isn’t writing she also works in a charity bookshop and takes long holidays in her 1967 classic campervan, Gerda. 

Follow Kelly on Twitter - @KMcCaughrain

Happy Publication Day to Lizzie Lees

Happy Publication Day to Lizzie Lees, whose Collage Carnival is out today from Pavillion Books

Create your own artworks and collages with this fantastic and fun book from print designer Lizzie Lees. Collage Carnival invites the reader to create a range of collage projects, from city scapes and travel journals using holiday snaps, to glitter-filled cards for friends. Mixed in with hints and tips for getting started are pages that can be coloured, cut out, customized, drawn on and embellished. There are pages filled with stickers and pages with gatefolds, allowing you to create your own collage masterpieces. Some pages are perforated so they can be pulled out and hung on the wall.

Lizzie Lees is an award-winning surface pattern designer based in North London. She graduated from Staffordshire University in 2005 with a BA (Hons) in Surface Pattern and became successfully established within the design industry. Over the past seven years she has worked with a number of prominent high street brands, including Designer’s Guild, Monsoon Accessorize Ltd, Marks and Spencer, John Lewis and Paperchase, where she busies herself creating beautiful patterns and placements for all manner of different products. She specialises in illustration, textile design and surface pattern.

Buy the book here

 

 

Omar Robert Hamilton debut acquired by Faber & Faber

Faber has signed a remarkable debut The City Always Wins amidst major rights excitement at the London Book Fair

We are delighted to announce that Faber has acquired an extraordinary and important first novel by Omar Robert Hamilton. David Godwin sold Lee Brackstone World Rights excluding US. The novel is scheduled for publication in Spring 2017.

The City Always Wins is a remarkable novel from the psychological heart of a revolution. From the communal highs of pitched night battles against the police in Cairo to the solitary lows of defeated exile in New York, Omar Robert Hamilton’s debut is a unique immersion into one of the key chapters of the 21st century. Arrestingly visual, intensely lyrical, uncompromisingly political, The City Always Wins is a novel not just about Egypt’s revolution but about a global generation that tried to change the world. 

Lee Brackstone, Creative Director said:

'The City Always Wins is a powerful account of idealism and revolutionary hope turned to ashes. It is hugely intelligent and ambitious and it should become the defining work of fiction about this extraordinary moment in recent history.'

The novel has already generated significant rights interest. Lizzie Bishop at Faber has sold Dutch rights to Hollands Diep, French rights to Gallimard, Italian rights to Guanda, and Spanish rights to Sexto Piso prior to the London Book Fair.

Omar Robert Hamilton is an award-winning filmmaker and writer. Based between Cairo and New York, he has written for the Guardian, the London Review of Books and Guernica. He co-founded the Mosireen media collective in Cairo and the Palestine Festival of Literature. This is his debut novel.

Bloomsbury to Publish new Samantha Shannon novel, THE PRIORY OF THE ORANGE TREE

We're enormously excited to announce that Bloomsbury has acquired World English rights to a standalone novel from international, bestselling author of The Bone Season, Samantha Shannon.

Alexandra Pringle, Editor-in-Chief at Bloomsbury, has bought The Priory of the Orange Tree from David Godwin. The novel is a standalone fantasy that draws influence from Eastern and Western mythology. In the novel, a war between dragons has divided the world, reducing humankind to a shadow of its former strength. It is told through the eyes of four characters from very different backgrounds. 

"Samantha Shannon is a writer whose imagination and flair is evident in all her work, but in this
gripping new fantasy novel she combines chivalric legends, dragons, Elizabethan court life, magic and Japanese folklore to stunning effect. It further confirms that Samantha Shannon is one of the leading fantasy writers of her generation," says Alexandra Pringle. 

"Samantha really is an astonishing talent. This is a fabulous book," says David Godwin. 

The Priory of the Orange Tree will be published by Bloomsbury in hardback and eBook. 

Samantha was born in west London in 1991. She started writing at the age of fifteen. 
Between 2010 and 2013 she studied English Language and Literature at St Anne’s College, Oxford. In 2013 she published The Bone Season, the first in a seven book series. The Mime Order followed in2015. Both were New York Times bestsellers and have been translated into twenty-two languages. The film rights have been acquired by the Imaginarium Studios and 20th Century Fox. Her third novel in the series, The Song Rising, will be published in 2017. 

Keep up to date with Samantha Shannon on Twitter, at @say_shannon and follow her blog, here.

 

Reviews: Luke Harding's A VERY EXPENSIVE POISON

Published in March by Guardian/Faber, Luke Harding's A Very Expensive Poison has been receiving some wonderful reviews. 

The Evening Standard explains - "This extraordinarily pacy book - I downed it in two session - by the Guardian's former Moscow correspondent is one of the best political thrillers I have come across in years. It is also a wonderful guide to criminality and power in today's Russia..."  

From The Times, "Harding ... tells this ghastly tale with real authority, wit and panache ... The book is as "definitive" as it claims, though "national security" means that the MI6 aspect of the story will never emerge. It is not only Russia that needs a change" and the Sunday Times, "Harding's book adds fascinating depth and context to an extraordinary story."

The New Statesmen says the book is "Pacy and impassioned ... Harding paints deft portraits of the tragi-comic duo suspected of carrying out the crime." While Bill Browder, author of Red Notice says, "A Very Expensive Poison reads like a John Le Carré spy novel, but shockingly it's all true. Luke Harding has followed the criminality of the Putin regime from Russia to the West and his story leaves us with terrible feelings of dread about what Putin will do next."

Buy the book here - Guardian Bookshop

Follow Luke on Twitter - @lukeharding1968

Sarah Ward's A PATIENT FURY to be published by Faber

 @sarahward1

@sarahward1

We have some brilliant news to end the week as Faber has acquired Sarah Ward's new novel A Patient Fury which is a gripping psychological thriller with a Scandinavian sensibility, set in the Peak District. A Patient Fury will tell the story of a deadly house fire that reveals deeply hidden family secrets and long-held resentments that have devastating consequences.

World all languages for A Patient Fury, plus one further novel, were acquired from Kirsty McLachlan here at DGA.

Ward's debut novel, In Bitter Chill, was widely acclaimed and Faber is publishing the sequel, A Deadly Thaw, in September. Mitzi Angel, publisher at Faber & Faber, said: 'There is a tidal wave of enthusiasm for Sarah's writing from the entire team at Faber. She has a very exciting career ahead of her and we are delighted to be publishing two further books—she represents a very important part of the list.'

Sarah has reviewed for the Los Angeles Review of Books, crimesquad.com and Eurocrime. Her articles have appeared in the Sunday Express magazine, Traveller and other publications. She is a judge for The Petrona Award for the Best Scandinavian Crime Novel.

Clementine Beauvais wins the Prix Sorcières

We're thrilled to announce that Clementine Beauvais has won the prestigious French literary prize, the Prix Sorcières with her book Les Petites reines in the teen category! The book was published in France last year by Editions Sarbacane and will be published in the UK by Pushkin Press.

The prize, which has been awarded each year since 1986 is judged jointly between the ALSJ (Association des Librairies Spécialisées Jeunesseand the ABF (Association des Bibliothécaires de France) and recognises several different children's categories. Congratulations Clementine!  

Because of their apparently unattractive looks, Mireille, Astrid and Hakima have won the "pudding contest" in their school. Brought together by their unwanted win the three girls discover that their fates are intertwined by a specific date and place: Paris, the Elysee on 14th July where they're all attending the famous garden party!

Summer for the "three puddings" is mapped out - they ride to Paris by bike, just like the local street vendors would while selling their pudding! What they did not expect was that their journey would attract media attention, turning the unlikely trio into celebrities.

Through winding alleyways, uncontrollable laughter, squabbles and interrogations, the three girls travel the roads of France, eating cheese, visiting castles and dancing their way through their adventurous journey. 

Happy Publication Day, Sharon Blackie!

We're wishing a very happy publication day to Sharon Blackie, whose If Women Rose Rooted: The Power of the Celtic Woman is out today from September Publishing.

‘Mind-blowing and profound in the most exhilarating sense.’ Manda Scott, author of the Boudica series and Into the Fire

Aged 30, Sharon Blackie found herself weeping in the car park of the multinational corporation where she worked, wondering if this was what a nervous breakdown felt like. Somewhere along the line, she realised, she had lost herself – and so began her long journey back to authenticity, rootedness and belonging.

In this extraordinary book of myth, memoir and modern-day mentors,  Blackie faces the wasteland of Western culture, the repression of women and the devastation of our planet. She boldly names the challenge: to reimagine women’s place in the world, and to rise up, firmly rooted in our own native landscapes and the Celtic stories and wisdom which spring from them.

A haunting Heroine’s Journey for every woman who finds inspiration and solace in the natural world.

Buy the book and follow Sharon on Twitter - @SharonBlackie

Jessica J. Lee's TURNING Acquired by Hamish Hamilton Canada

Jessica twitter photo.jpg

Lots of exciting news today as we can announce Hamish Hamilton Canada have acquired Jessica J. Lee's TURNING: A YEAR IN THE WATER. Penguin Canada VP, Nicole Winstanley acquired Canadian rights and has said of the memoir, "I'm not sure which I admire more: her polished and elegant prose, the fine balance she achieves between the stillness of nature and the intensity of emotion, or the exceptional challenge she set herself - to swim in one of Berlin’s lakes each week for a year. This is the rarest sort of literary memoir..."

TURNING is a nature memoir chronicling Jessica J. Lee’s year of swimming. She swims throughout the seasons — through the heat of summer to the frozen depths of winter. She swims to explore the natural history of fresh water and to examine her own place and identity in the world.

In the summer of 2015 she began swimming across fifty-two lakes in and around Berlin. The idea was, simply, to visit a different lake each week of the year, reclaiming the emotional and physical space of the water. She hiked and cycled to the lakes, with no cars and no wetsuits — just herself, and the water.

TURNING will be published in the UK by Lennie Goodings at Virago and in Germany by Berlin Verlag.

Chatto & Windus Acquire Second Book by Suzanne O'Sullivan

Becky Hardie, Deputy Publishing Director of Chatto & Windus, has acquired world rights, all languages, in Brainstorm by Dr Suzanne O’Sullivan from Kirsty McLachlan at DGA, for publication in 2018. In her new book Suzanne O’Sullivan, one of the UK’s leading neurologists and epilepsy specialists, will take us on a tour of the brain. Using the lens of epilepsy – unwanted electrical discharges, or brainstorms, that occur in different parts of the brain with dramatically varied results – she will show us right inside this endlessly fascinating, mysterious organ.

Suzanne’s first book, It’s All in Your Head, was published in hardback last year to critical acclaim, blanket media coverage and strong home and overseas sales, with rights sold in seven overseas markets. The book, a sympathetic exploration of the very real world of psychosomatic illness, has also just been shortlisted for the Wellcome Book Prize.

Becky Hardie said ‘It’s been an amazing experience working with Suzanne on It’s All in Your Head and the news of the Wellcome Book Prize shortlisting is the icing on the cake. This new book will be the perfect combination of medical expertise with wonderful writing, especially Suzanne’s exceptional ability to bring her patients’ stories alive on the page.’  

Suzanne said ‘It was an honour to have the opportunity to work with Chatto on my first book and I am thrilled to be given the chance to do so again. The stories my patients have to tell are delicate and personal and I know that they are in safe hands, as am I.’

Movement in Monmouth Street

After sharing an office in London for almost a year, Susanna Lea Associates and David Godwin Associates have decided to join forces on selling their foreign and North American rights. The logistical advantages are substantial for DGA as SLA have offices in Paris and New York, as well as London. Kerry Glencorse will continue to run the SLA London office. Lisette Verhagen will continue to work on all DGA titles and will also assist SLA in a number of European territories. "We are sure that this is going to be a terrifically successful partnership and we are delighted" said Heather and David Godwin. “DGA has such a wonderful list --  we are thrilled and honoured to be working with David and his team” said Susanna Lea.

Marcus Sedgwick shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal

More brilliant news today as we're delighted to announce that Marcus Sedgwick has been shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal for his YA book, The Ghosts of Heaven. Congratulations Marcus!

The CILIP Carnegie Medal is awarded by children's librarians for an outstanding book written in English for young people.

Dawn Finch, president of CILIP, said: “We are without doubt in a golden age of children’s books. From stories set in Victorian times and World War One to a modern day library, from fantasy worlds to the future, these shortlists showcase the enormous talent and unlimited imagination currently to be found in children’s storytelling. There are characters to fall in love and go on adventures with and journeys and discoveries to be made. Each and every one of the books on the shortlists could be a worthy winner and all of them are truly deserving of a global audience.”

Sioned Jacques, chair of the judging panel, added: “These exceptionally strong shortlists reflect the huge range of writing and illustrating talent in children’s publishing at the moment… Our shortlisted writers and illustrators don’t shy away from difficult or big ideas but skilfully introduce them to young readers in ways that are gripping, moving, entertaining but always, without exception, page-turning.”

The winner will be announced 20th June at a ceremony at the British Library. The winner will receive a £5,000 cash prize.

Buy the book!

Follow Marcus on Twitter - @marcussedgwick

Suzanne O'Sullivan's IT'S ALL IN YOUR HEAD reaches shortlist of Wellcome Book Prize 2016

We're absolutely thrilled that Suzanne O'Sullivan's It's All in Your Head: True Stories of Imaginary Illness has reached the shortlist of the Wellcome Book Prize 2016. The book was published by Chatto & Windus.

"The 2016 shortlist showcases the breadth and depth of our encounters with medicine through six exceptional works of fiction and non-fiction," and the winner will be announced 25th April. 

'Even if medical tests cannot explain your pain or tiredness or disability, it does not lessen your suffering. The pain of medically unexplained illness is every bit as real as any other and, if anything, is multiplied by the lack of understanding.' 

Most of us accept the way our heart flutters when we set eyes on the one we secretly admire, or the sweat on our brow as we start the presentation we do not want to give. But few of us are fully aware of how dramatic our body’s reactions to emotions can sometimes be.

In It’s All in Your Head consultant neurologist Dr Suzanne O’Sullivan takes us on a journey through the very real world of psychosomatic illness. She takes us from the extreme -- from paralysis, seizures and blindness -- to more everyday problems such as tiredness and pain. Meeting her patients, she encourages us to look deep inside the human condition. There we find the secrets we are all capable of keeping from ourselves, and our age-old failure to credit the intimate and extraordinary connection between mind and body.

Keep up to date with the Wellcome Prize on Twitter - @wellcomebkprize 

Lucy Inglis wins YA Romantic Novel of the Year

Lucy Inglis has won the YA Romantic Novel of the Year award 2016 from the Romantic Novelist's Association with her book Crow Mountain. Congratulations Lucy! The novel was published by Chicken House last September.

Fate sets two English girls, Hope and Emily, on parallel journeys more than a hundred years apart...

While on holiday in Montana, Hope meets local boy Cal Crow, a ranch-hand. Caught in a freak accident, the two of them take shelter in a mountain cabin where Hope makes a strange discovery.

More than a hundred years earlier, another English girl met a similar fate. Her rescuer: a horse-trader called Nate. In this wild place, both girls learn what it means to survive and to fall in love, neither knowing that their fates are intimately entwined.

Follow Lucy on Twitter here - @lucyinglis

Ian Williams' graphic novel, 'THE LADY DOCTOR' aquired by Myriad

We're excited to announce that Myriad has acquired the highly anticipated new graphic novel by GP and comics artist Ian Williams - we couldn't wait to share their press release.

The Lady Doctor is the follow-up companion volume to Ian’s critically acclaimed debut, The Bad Doctor, about the life and times of rural GP Iwan James.

The Lady Doctor focuses on one of Iwan’s fellow doctors, 40-year-old Lois Pritchard, who is balancing her career as a Genitourinary Medicine specialist with a disastrous romantic life as well as a momentous decision regarding her estranged mother. Myriad’s Creative Director and Graphics Editor, Corinne Pearlman, bought World rights to The Lady Doctor from Kirsty McLachlan at David Godwin Associates and Myriad will publish in 2018.

‘From the moment we see Lois nipping out of the back of the surgery for a fag, we know we will get a good story!’ says Corinne Pearlman. ‘Ian has a lightness of touch and a wonderfully sly sense of humour that cuts across any worthiness of his achievement in the world of graphic medicine. He knows his comics and he loves to communicate using all the tools of his craft. We’re in for a treat.’

Ian Williams is also the author of ‘Sick Notes’, a weekly strip which appears in the Guardianchronicling the trials of the NHS. He has an international following as the founder ofGraphic Medicine, a network of comics artists creating stories about health, and is series editor of Penn State University Press’s Graphic Medicine imprint, which publishes the US edition of The Bad Doctor.

The Bad Doctor has attracted widespread acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic and been celebrated with a range of award nominations. Highly Commended at the 2015 British Medical Association Book Awards in the Primary Health Care Category, it was also shortlisted for the Medicine Unboxed Creative Prize and longlisted for the British Comic Awards (Best Book), where Ian was longlisted in the Emerging Talent category.

Myriad is an independent publisher of fiction and graphic books based in Brighton, with a graphics list that has quickly become established as one of the most characterful and thought-provoking in the UK.

Tom Ellen & Lucy Ivison to publish "freshers" YA novel

Excellent news for YA fans - it's just been announced that Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison, the authors of Lobsters and Never Evers, are writing a new YA novel about the first year of university.

Freshers, which will be published by Chicken House and tells the story of two teenagers, one boy and one girl, as they “embark on their first year of university, a rollercoaster of love, sex and friendship”, and will feature many of the same characters from Lobsters.

Chicken House m.d. Barry Cunningham acquired world rights from Kirsty McLachlan here at DGA and will publish in August 2017.

Tom and Lucy’s first novel Lobsters, a YA romance, was published in June 2014 and was shortlisted for the inaugural YA Book Prize. Their second book, Never Evers, about a school ski trip, was published last month.

Buy Never Evers and Lobsters and hear Tom and Lucy chat about their books here. 

A Monday treat for you from M G Leonard's BEETLE BOY

Waterstones' Book of the Month, M G Leonard's BEETLE BOY is out now - buy it here!

... and if you can't wait, here's a treat from her publisher, Chicken House, to you.

The first darkly hilarious novel in a new trilogy by an exciting debut author - featuring exotic beetles, a daring quest, a mixture of bold male and female characters and a truly venomous villain! Darkus can't believe his eyes when a huge insect drops out of the trouser leg of his horrible new neighbour.