Century has pre-empted two books by South African author Charlie Human, likening his writing to Neil Gaiman, China Mieville and Terry Pratchett.
Editorial director Jack Fogg bought UK and Commonwealth rights to Apocalypse Now Now and as yet untitled second book from John Berlyne at the Zeno agency. Random House Struik bought South African rights in a separate deal.
Apocalypse Now Now tells the story of 16-year-old Baxter Zevcenko who runs a schoolyard gang at his Cape Town high school. When his girlfriend, Esme, gets kidnapped, he is launched into the world of the Cape Town supernatural underworld.
Century will publish in the summer of 2013, with an Arrow paperback to follow the next year.
Fogg said: "Apocalypse Now Now is one of those rare, generous novels which goes to incredible lengths to entertain the reader. I haven’t laughed so hard or flat out enjoyed a ride more in a very long time. Charlie is a fantastic writer, at the forefront of the nascent speculative fiction scene in South Africa, and I feel incredibly privileged to be publishing his unique novels."