The Publishing Post
Latest Acquisitions & Adaptations
By Georgie Cutler, Eva Lee, Emma Leask, Molly Pearce and Niamh Parr
Walker Wins Auction for Davis-Featherstone's Oxford Thriller
Walker Books has won a five-way auction for two thrilling YA titles by Rachael Davis-Featherstone. The first book – Oxford Slays – is a dark academia murder mystery, recommended for fans of Ace of Spades and The Secret History. The story follows Eva and her best friend George as they attend an interview week at Oxford University. In a turn of events, Eva finds herself accused of her best friend’s murder and must now find a way to prove her innocence whilst also fighting against an anonymous social media account that is threatening to ruin her. Gráinne Clear at Walker Books bought world rights (excluding North America) to the two titles in a six-figure deal from Jasmine Richards at Storymix. North American rights were bought by Sara Goodman at Wednesday Books in a deal conducted by Allison Hellegers at Stimola Literary Studio on behalf of Storymix. The first of the two novels is set to be published in spring 2025.
New spin-off trilogy and trilogy from Maz Evans to be published by Chicken House
Maz Evans, author of the Who Let The Gods Out? series, has been acquired by Chicken House for a new series set twenty years after the original books. UK and Commonwealth rights to a further four books have been acquired in a six-figure deal. The first book in the series, entitled Oh Maya Gods!, introduces a new group of friends who will be battling against evil immortals. Currently expected to be released in paperback on 28 September 2023, the launch of the new series will be accompanied by a major marketing campaign which includes proofs for book bloggers, point-of-sale displays in bookshops and samples being made available for schools. The first book will see the main characters venturing to the underworld, where they’ll encounter Kizin and his Lords and Ladies of Death in a bid to stop the chaos before the end of the world ensues. The next two books in this fun, fast-paced middle grade series are expected to be published in 2024.
From book to screen
Psychological series Saint X out on Hulu
Hulu is back with another book-to-screen adaptation of Alexis Schaitkin’s bestselling Saint X. The psychological series follows Claire’s life after her sister vanishes from the Caribbean island of Saint X on a family vacation. After a long search for clues, two men are arrested and then released due to a lack of evidence. Fast forward a few years, and Claire recognises one of the suspects and starts an investigation into her sister’s death. This series is set to tell a story of grief, pain and anger through different timelines and stars Alycia Debnam-Carey, Kenlee Townsend, Josh Bonzie, West Duchovny, Jayden Elijah and Bre Francis. Saint X is out now on Hulu and will air a total of eight episodes with one episode a week.
Bridgerton prequel coming to Netflix
This month, Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story, a series set in the world of the Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton, debuts on Netflix. After the success of the first season of Bridgerton, Netflix announced that a prequel series was being developed by Shonda Rhimes, focusing on a young Queen Charlotte. The series sees younger versions of characters we’ve met in Bridgerton, including Lady Danbury and Violet, Dowager Viscountess Bridgerton. It stars India Amarteifio as the young Queen Charlotte, alongside Corey Mylchreest as the young King George III. Shonda Rhimes and Julia Quinn have teamed up to write a novel based on Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story that will be published 9 May 2023. You can learn more about the young queen by streaming the series on Netflix now.
MEG 2: The Trench coming to screen in summer 2023
The Trench, the 1999 sequel to Steve Alten’s science fiction novel MEG, will be turned into an action-packed horror film this summer entitled MEG 2: The Trench. The novel follows Jonas Taylor, a paleobiologist with a fascination for the Megalodon. After finding a pregnant Megalodon four years prior, he keeps its offspring in his struggling facility. Desperate, he turns to a billionaire for funding aid, subsequently finding out that the ocean may not be the scariest thing he has to face. The film will star action legend Jason Statham as the lead role, with Cliff Curtis, Shuya Sophia Cai and Page Kennedy as supporting roles. MEG 2: The Trench will be released on 4 August 2023.