Avon has signed The Real Thing from Mandy Byatt in a two-book deal.
Phoebe Morgan acquired world English rights from Bill Goodall at the Bill Goodall Literary Agency.
The Real Thing tells the story of three women, each seduced by the same man online, the elusive David Kingfisher. When the women realise David has been in touch with them all, they meet up and form a plan for revenge. It is slated to publish in January 2022.
Morgan, editorial director for Avon and HarperFiction, said: “I love the concept behind The Real Thing – it feels so timely and Mandy really gets to the heart of the perils of online dating. Each of the three women’s voices are so distinct, and this is the perfect dark, twisty read for readers who love Adele Parks and Liane Moriarty. We’re really thrilled to be launching Mandy at Avon.”
Byatt is currently in the second year of a part-time MA in Creative Writing (Crime Fiction) at the University of East Anglia.
She said: “As we’re all spending more and more time online, I wanted to explore what can go wrong when you put your trust in someone you’ve only met virtually. I’m delighted that Avon has given me an opportunity to tell this story of loneliness and revenge.”