Transworld pre-empts debut fantasy trilogy

Transworld has moved speedily to acquire a new fantasy trilogy by debut author Erika Johansen, pre-empting UK and Commonwealth rights barely 24 hours after HarperCollins pre-empted the books in North America.

Editorial director Simon Taylor signed the deal for The Queen of the Tearling from Cathryn Summerhayes on behalf of Dorian Karchmar at WME.

Publication of the first title is planned in Bantam Press hardcover for summer 2014, with the mass market edition scheduled for the following year, ahead of the second book. Deals have already been signed in Brazil, with Suma de Letras; with Plaza Y Janes in Spain, and People's Press in Denmark.

Taylor said: "At Transworld, we set great store by the in-house enthusiasm a story generates, and the response I received from colleagues to The Queen of the Tearling was immediate and nothing short of rhapsodic . . . On the evidence of her devour-in-two-sittings debut, Erika Johansen is a born storyteller, and she's written a novel that is both gratifyingly full of classic fantasy tropes but also doing something intriguing, thrillingly different. For us, it was a simple case of 'must-have'."