Latest Acquisitions & Adaptations
By Georgie Cutler, Eva Lee, Molly Pearce and Niamh Parr
Holt and John Murray to Publish Hilary Mantel Memoir
Holt has acquired the North American rights to A Memoir of My Former Self: A Life in Writing, the new collection of essays by acclaimed author Hilary Mantel, in a sale managed by Bill Hamilton of A.M. Heath Agency. The collection features pieces written across four decades of Mantel’s life – from the 1980s to the years before her death in 2022 – on a wide range of subjects, including her health troubles, her years in Saudi Arabia, insights into her prize-winning novels and the first full publication of her 2017 Reith Lectures. John Murray has called this “Mantel’s final book.” A Memoir of My Former Self is set to be published in both the US and the UK in October by Holt and John Murray, respectively.
MacInnes’s Booker Prize Novel Acquired by Grove Atlantic
The new science-fiction novel from Scottish author Martin MacInnes, In Ascension, has been acquired by Grove Atlantic for publication in the US. North American rights were acquired by Morgan Entrekin; in a deal with David Forrer at InkWell Management. Concerned with vast and mysterious spaces, MacInnes’s novel follows a Dutch microbiologist named Leigh who works as part of a team investigating an inexplicably deep crater freshly discovered in the Atlantic Ocean. This strange discovery propels Leigh on a colossal journey from the depths of the ocean to the heights of the cosmos. In Ascension was published in the UK earlier in 2023 and subsequently longlisted for the 2023 Booker Prize. Grove Atlantic plans to publish a paperback edition of the novel in February 2024.
Preston Collaborates with Elton John on Upcoming Non-Fiction
Award-winning journalist John Preston, author of acclaimed novels including The Dig and A Very English Scandal, has collaborated with musical icon Sir Elton John on a non-fiction book covering John’s ownership of his childhood football team, Watford FC. The title – Watford Forever: How Graham Taylor and Elton John Saved a Football Club, a Town and Each Other – was acquired by Viking, an imprint of Penguin, and is set to be published in hardback, eBook and audiobook on 16 November 2023. Preston’s book celebrates the underdog as it tells the story of Watford’s miraculous journey from fourth to first division in the English Football League after being bought by the singer.
From Book to Screen
What to watch?
The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart on Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Studios has acquired rights to stream the adaptation of the internationally bestselling novel The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart written by Australian author, Holly Ringland. The adaptation is split into a seven-part series, which follows Alice Hart who, after tragically losing her parents in an unfortunate accident, is taken to live with her grandmother at the flower farm. During her time spent at the farm, a series of stories are uncovered about her family involving manipulation and lies, leaving Alice distraught. A fight for freedom and a new journey awaits Alice as she encounters more issues along the way. The series stars a strong female cast featuring Sigourney Weaver, Alycia Debnam-Carey, Asher Keddie and Leah Purcell. Catch up on all the episodes on Prime Video.
New American Horror Story Adapted from Thriller Novel
The widely anticipated twelfth season of American Horror Story is set to be a partial adaptation of the novel Delicate Condition by Danielle Valentine. Compared to the acclaimed Rosemary’s Baby, Delicate Condition follows principal character Anna Alcott along her journey to become pregnant through IVF. Riddled with complications at every turn, Anna believes that an unknown figure is jeopardising her pregnancy, but none of the men around her – not her husband, not her doctors – will listen. Even after the doctors confirm that Anna has supposedly had a miscarriage, she remains certain that she’s still pregnant, only that something is horribly wrong with her baby. AHS: Delicate sees the return of fan-favourite cast members such as Emma Roberts, as well as exciting contributions from Kim Kardashian and Cara Delevingne. Part one of the two-part series will premiere on 20 September 2023.
In the Works
Cillian Murphy to Lead Small Things Like These Adaptation
Cillian Murphy is teaming up with director Tim Mielants (Peaky Blinders) to produce and lead the Small Things Like These film adaptation by playwright Enda Walsh. It will be based on the Booker Prize shortlisted novel of the same name by Claire Keegan. The novel follows Bill Furlong, a coal and timber merchant, who faces long-buried secrets in his small 1980s Irish town during his busiest season – the lead up to Christmas. The author is set to produce the film, alongside Matt Damon and Ben Affleck through their production company Artist Equity. The acting talents of Ciarán Hinds (Belfast) and Emily Watson (Chernobyl) will join Murphy to round out the small cast. Principle photography started in March 2023, so we’ll anxiously await more news of this intriguing project.