Amazon Publishing senior acquisitions editor Emilie Marneur has made her first two acquisitions for the Thomas & Mercer thriller and mystery imprint. She signed two novels from self-published author Mel Sherratt.
Marneur, who previously worked at the Amazon-owned Audible, acquired world English language rights for two books, Taunting the Dead which Sheratt had already self-released, and an unpublished book called Watching Over You. The deal was done with Madeleine Milburn at the Madeleine Milburn Literary, TV & Film Agency.
Milburn had taken Watching Over You, described as a "terrifying psychological suspense thriller", to London Book Fair in April.
Sherratt first published Taunting the Dead via the Kindle Direct Publishing programme, with the book reaching number three on the Kindle chart, and staying in the top ten for four weeks and in the top 100 for three months.
Milburn said: "Amazon is the natural home for Mel given her success from self-publishing with KDP so far. They know how she works and she knows how they operate—with speed, efficiency and mass-market commercial strategies to break her out to new readers internationally."
The books will be released in paperback and audio formats, as well as digitally.
Last November, Amazon Publishing vice-president Jeff Belle wrote to agents in the UK announcing Amazon's forthcoming European publishing wing headquartered in Luxembourg, focused on English-language titles aimed at the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain.
The division is headed by Vicky Griffith, publisher of Amazon's West Coast Group, who relocated from Seattle in the New Year.
Amazon has not yet responded to a request for comment.
Amazon unveiled a dedicated website for its Amazon Publishing platform in May, featuring imprints Thomas & Mercer (crime and thriller); Amazon Children's Publishing; Amazon Crossing (translated works); Amazon Encore ("rediscovered" books); 47 North (science fiction and fantasy); Montlake Romance (romance); Little A (literary fiction); Grand Harbour Press (spiritual and self discovery); and Amazon Publishing (non-fiction, memoirs and general fiction).