Latest Acquisitions & Adaptations
By Georgie Cutler, Eva Lee, Emma Leask, Molly Pearce and Niamh Parr
Picador Wins Eleven-Way Auction for Sykes’ Feminist Retelling of History
Historian Dr Rebecca Wragg Sykes sparked an intense auction between eleven publishers with her newest book Matriarcha: Human Evolution Re-Imagined. Georgina Morley from Picador won the auction, acquiring UK and Commonwealth rights to the book which is now set for publication in 2025. The book spans an impressive five-million-year history, in which Sykes takes control of a typically male narrative and retells it from a feminist perspective, giving a voice to women throughout history who have been disregarded. This will no doubt be a powerful book that makes readers reconsider the history they thought they knew. Morley praises the book’s “sparkling prose" (The Bookseller), which promises to bring history to life on the page. We’re so excited to see this empowering, history-changing book come to be in the not-too-distant future.
Johnson’s Mystery Novel Signed by Black & White Publishing
Black & White Publishing, an imprint of Bonnier Books UK, has acquired the rights to the mystery novel Devil’s Breath, the first in a series by Jill Johnson, who published her debut novel in 2018. The plot follows Professor Eustacia Rose, a reclusive lover of rare and dangerous plants, as she finds herself implicated in an unusual murder. The victim, someone close to Eustacia’s beautiful neighbour Simone, has been poisoned using a toxin derived from a rare poisonous plant, which just so happens to be Eustacia’s expertise. World English rights for the first two books in Johnson’s series were acquired by Campbell Brown from Anna Soler-Pont at Pontas Literary and Film Agency. Devil’s Breath will be published in June 2023.
Jamia Wilson Acquires Rights to Ketanji Brown Jackson Memoir
Random House’s Jamia Wilson has acquired the world rights to Kentaji Brown Jackson’s memoir Lovely One. The first Black woman to be appointed to the US Supreme Court in April 2022. Jackson’s memoir will cover the experiences that shaped the woman she has become, including her childhood in Miami, education at Harvard and the balance between marriage and motherhood. Jamia Wilson – writer, commentator and feminist activist based in New York City – has the job of bringing this widely anticipated book to life. The memoir currently has no publication date, but will undoubtedly be an influential insight into the life of such an extraordinary and powerful figure in the United States judiciary system.
From Book to Screen
What to Watch?
Netflix is Streaming Lockwood & Co.
Lockwood & Co. is arriving on Netflix this month as an eight-episode series directed by Joe Cornish. It has been adapted from Jonathan Stroud’s YA supernatural thriller novel series of the same name, which revolves around a London ghost-hunting agency set up by Anthony Lockwood, his friend, George Karim, and the psychically gifted newcomer, Lucy Carlyle. Together they must investigate the hauntings plaguing the world, known as “the problem.” Lockwood & Co. stars Cameron Chapman, Ali Hadji-Heshmati and Ruby Stokes – who you may recognise as Francesca from Bridgerton – as Lockwood, Karim and Carlyle. You can watch this series adaptation on Netflix from 27 January 2023.
Dear Edward on AppleTV+
Dear Edward, written by Ann Napolitano, is set to be adapted into a series with writing and executive producing by Emmy award-winner Jason Katims. This heart-breaking yet uplifting story focuses on survival, grief and friendships and tells the story of Edward Adler, a twelve-year-old boy who survives a plane crash that kills every other passenger on the flight, including his family. As Edward and others all over the world are affected by the tragedy, they try to rebuild a new life after the crash and learn how to cope with loneliness. The series is set to star Colin O’Brien, Connie Britton and Taylor Schilling in the leading roles alongside a big supporting cast. The ten-episode series is set to release on 3 February 2023, with weekly episodes every Friday until 24 March.
In the works
Turtles All the Way Down Coming to HBO Max
The film adaptation of Turtles All the Way Down is coming to HBO Max, based on the novel of the same name by John Green. This adaptation will add to the collection of films based on John Green’s novels, including The Fault in Our Stars, Looking for Alaska and more. The romantic film tells a story of a seventeen-year-old Aza Holmes who struggles with obsessive-compulsive disorder. She happens to reconnect with her childhood crush and is forced to confront the difficulties of finding true love and happiness whilst facing her mental health condition. The leading cast will star Isabela Merced, Cree Cicchino and Felix Mallard. Filming and casting started last year with no current updates, but we could see a potential release date for this year, so keep your eyes peeled.