Canongate has acquired Salt on your Tongue, the first book by Daily Telegraph poetry critic and arts writer, Charlotte Runcie.
Publishing director Francis Bickmore and editor Jo Dingley acquired world rights, including audio, from Kirsty McLachlan at David Godwin Associates.
In Salt on your Tongue Runcie explores what the sea means to us, and particularly what it has meant to women through the ages. A mixture of memoir, social history, literary criticism, biography and nature writing, the book is a "walk on the beach with Turner, with Shakespeare, with the Romantic Poets and shanty-singers". It’s an "ode to our oceans – to the sailors who have braved their treacherous waters, to the women who lost their loved ones to the waves, to the creatures that dwell in their depths, to beach trawlers, swimmers, sea birds and mermaids".
Runcie explores how the sea has inspired, fascinated and terrified us, and how she herself fell in love with the deep blue. Navigating through ancient Greek myths, poetry, shipwrecks and Scottish folktales, this is a book about how the "wild untameable waves can help us understand what it means to be human".
Runcie said: "I hope that Salt on Your Tongue will speak to everyone who has felt a sense of freedom and possibility on the sea air. Having always admired the incredible independence of spirit behind all of Canongate’s wonderful books, I’m thrilled to join their crew."
Bickmore said: “Salt on Your Tongue explores how all of us can find inspiration by the water. This is a book about art, stories, togetherness, and how nature helps us understand our place in the world.”
Canongate will publish the title in hardback in January 2019.