Latest Acquisitions & Adaptations
By Georgie Cutler, Niamh Parr and Emily Retford
The Borough Press Pre-Empts Crowther’s Gender-Swapped Gatsby Novel
A modern, gender-swapped retelling of beloved classic The Great Gatsby by Film Critic Jane Crowther has landed at The Borough Press. Crowther’s @Gatsby follows young graduate Nic Carraway as she befriends her new neighbour and female social media influencer Jay Gatsby, becoming consequently drawn into Gatsby’s tantalising and perilous world of fame. This thrilling modernisation promises to continue the themes of mystery, scandal, social class and American dreams that were so pertinent to Fitzgerald’s original Jazz Age novel, only swapping the 1920s for the 2020s. Alongside these themes, the novel features contemporary influences such as a heavy focus on social media and all its ills, including online toxicity and cancel culture. @Gatsby was pre-empted by Commissioning Editor Amy Perkins at The Borough Press from Harry Illingworth at DHH Literary Agency. This will be Crowther’s fiction debut, whilst her non-fiction debut, described as “a celebration of cinema” is also set for publication by Harper Collins in December 2024.
Bloomsbury General Pre-empts Two Novels by “New British romance star” Gillam
Bloomsbury General has secured the world rights to Bianca Gillam’s debut romance novel Bad Publicity and another yet unnamed title. Described as a “classic enemies-to-lovers romance,” the book follows Andie, who, having just landed her dream job, is forced to work with Jack Carlson, her ex-university-boyfriend. A month-long trip in Europe with a guy who broke her heart (and who she definitely doesn’t still have feelings for) is the plot basis for this new romance title, which will make readers laugh, learn and cry. Gillam, who is Assistant Editor at Head of Zeus, said that Bloomsbury is “her dream publisher,” with Bad Publicity being described as assured, funny and emotional. Bad Publicity is set to be published in Spring 2025 and is hopefully the start of a new list for Bloomsbury’s new commercial division.
From Book to Screen: What to Watch Halloween edition
As spooky season gets into full swing, here are some paranormal-themed recommendations to get you into the spirit of the Halloween.
Twitches on Disney+
If you’re looking to reminisce on Halloween’s of the past, why not venture back to the magical dimension of Coventry in the 2005 made-for-TV movie Twitches. Based on the novel series of the same name, Twitches follows twin witches, Camryn and Alexandra, who were separated at birth. They happen upon one another on their twenty-first birthday and have to use their magic to save the world. The book series was published by Scholastic Press and written by H.B. Gilmour and Randi Reisfeld. The Disney channel adaptation stars Tia Mowry and Tamera Mowry as the two sisters, accompanied by the likes of Kristen Wilson, Patrick Fabian, Jennifer Robertson and Pat Kelly. You can stream Twitches and its sequel Twitches Too on Disney+.
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark on BBC iPlayer
This supernatural horror film by André Øvredal is an adaptation of the novel series of the same name by Alvin Schwartz. Set in the small town of Mill Valley, it follows a group of unsuspecting teens as they discover that the stories, they found in a book written in blood are coming to life. Michael Garza, Zoe Margaret Colletti, Gabriel Rush and Austin Abrams star in this adaptation from the minds of Guillermo del Toro, Patrick Melton and Marcus Dunstan. Dan Hageman and Kevin Hageman have adapted the screenplay. You can watch Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark on BBC iPlayer. A sequel was announced in April 2020 and is currently in the works.
The Shining on BBC iPlayer
Stephen King’s third published novel The Shining is one of the most famous gothic horror novels of all time and its 1980 film adaptation is a classic horror movie to add to your watchlist. Set in “The Overlook” hotel, The Shining sees Jack Torrance – a writer recovering from alcoholism – take on a winter caretaker position whilst trying to get over his writer’s block. Accompanied by his wife and child, the family soon discovers that there’s more to the hotel than meets the eye. The film adaptation stars Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall and Danny Lloyd. You can watch The Shining on BBC iPlayer. If you loved The Shining, you could also try its sequel Doctor Sleep which follows Jack’s son, Danny.