Bloomsbury Publishing has won Imogen Crimp’s debut novel, The High Notes, in a four-way auction.
Editor Allegra Le Fanu acquired UK and Commonwealth rights (excluding Canada) from Emma Finn of C&W. Publication is planned for 2022 and will be backed by a “major” marketing and publicity campaign.
North American rights were acquired by Kerry Cullen at Henry Holt in a five-way auction from Hillary Jacobson at ICM.
German rights were pre-empted by Hanserblau within hours of submission, Romanian rights were pre-empted by Trei and the novel is currently under offer in Russia, with "significant interest" elsewhere.
The High Notes is the story of Anna, a young woman training to be singer in London as she struggles to keep herself afloat. She and her best friend Laurie live in misery as the lodgers of a sinister married couple, before upping sticks to an equally insufferable bohemian collective. Singing jazz in a bar one night, Anna meets an older man, Max, and is sucked into an affair with him. As the fissures between Anna’s different worlds widen into chasms, she finds that she is losing herself, and risking everything she holds dear.
Le Fanu said: “We at Bloomsbury are so excited to bring The High Notes into the world. It cracks open the timeless and universal quandaries of what it is to be young, what it is to be lost, what it is to want to be wanted, what it is to find your calling and lose your way to it. Imogen Crimp is an extraordinary talent.”
Finn added: “This mesmerising debut is brimming with talent. I remember reading Imogen’s early pages when she was finishing up the Curtis Brown Creative course last year and being immediately gripped by her voice. Bloomsbury and Holt are dream homes for this novel and I can’t wait to see the phenomenal teams on both sides of the pond work their magic.”
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