Allen & Unwin is publishing Victoria Park, the debut novel of British teacher Gemma Reeves, set in contemporary east London.
The novel tells the tales of 12 loosely linked characters, with a multi-perspective narrative, and spans the course of one year in the aftermath of an acid attack in "the People’s Park" of the title.
UK and Commonwealth rights (excluding Canada) in Victoria Park were snapped up by senior editor Kate Ballard from Seren Adams at United Agents.
Themes explored in the novel include love and loss, alienation, change, and the unlikely ties that can exist within a London community.
Ballard said: "In Victoria Park Gemma Reeves quietly yet brilliantly captivates her reader with a snapshot of contemporary urban life, showing us through her richly drawn, diverse cast of characters and evocative park-side setting what it is to live, to love and to lose, regardless of social background. My team and I can’t wait to share this life-affirming novel—and fresh new voice in fiction—with readers everywhere."
Reeves said: "I feel very fortunate that Victoria Park has found its home at Allen & Unwin. It’s such a pleasure to be working with an independent publisher who are keen to publish stories centred around the lives of ordinary people. I’m excited for their worlds to come out and take up residence in ours."
Victoria Park will publish in hardback and e-book in January 2021 on the Allen & Unwin imprint of Atlantic Books.