Liverpool indie Dead Ink has bought Cat Step, a novel by Alison Irvine, author of The Road is Red, in what publishing director Nathan Connolly called a "significant" acquisition.
Connolly bought the book from Millie Hoskins of United Agents and will be representing world rights at the Frankfurt Book Fair.
Cat Step tells of Liz, who "barely thought twice" about leaving a sleeping, unwell child alone in the car: “I thought about carrying her in, but it would have woken her and, god, to wake a sleeping child, an ill child at that, and then drive for hours afterwards trying to get her back to sleep...” The decision is soon to consume her every waking thought, "and not just her thoughts, but those of every neighbour, police and social security worker in a 15 mile radius."
Irvine was born in London and now lives in Glasgow. Her first novel, This Road is Red (Luath), was based on the true stories of residents of Glasgow’s Red Road Flats and was shortlisted for the 2011 Saltire First Book of the Year Award.
Connolly said: “We’re very excited to have Alison join Dead Ink. We feel that the challenges that Cat Step presents its readers with alongside Alison’s tightly controlled prose makes this book a significant acquisition that will play a key part in our continued growth."
Dead Ink "can’t wait" to publish the book, he added.