Costa winner Filer moves to Faber for second book

Costa winner Filer moves to Faber for second book

Faber has acquired a "powerful" work of non-fiction by Costa Book of the Year winner Nathan Filer. 

The Heartland: finding and losing schizophrenia is Filer's second book since his award-winning debut The Shock of the Fall (The Borough Press) and promises to similarly "illuminate our perception and transform lives".

Editorial director Louisa Joyner, who published Filer while at HarperCollins, struck the deal for UK, European Union and Commonwealth rights, excluding Canada, from Sophie Lambert at C+W. She called the former mental health nurse's new book "an important contribution to our understanding of and relationship to schizophrenia - an illness that sits at the heart of our cultural, social and individuated relationships to mental health".

In The Heartland, Filer will invite readers to spend time in the company of extraordinary people whose lives have been affected by schizophrenia and "discover their complex, surprising, painful, funny and ultimately relatable stories". According to Faber, Filer interlaces first-person encounters with a series of meditative essays and debunks myths, challenges orthodoxy and offers fresh insight into what is traditionally considered to be psychiatry’s heartland - the diagnosis and treatment of schizophrenia.

The Shock of the Fall, his novel about the life of a young man grieving the loss of his brother, sold over half a million copies in the UK and has been translated into 30 languages. As well as winning the Costa Book of the Year, it also took the Betty Trask Prize, the National Book Award for Popular Fiction and the Writers’ Guild Award for Best First Novel.

Filer, who is now a Reader in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University, said he was delighted to be working with Joyner once again. "She was the perfect editor for The Shock of the Fall and is bringing the same intelligence, compassion and vision to The Heartland, which to me feels like a natural sequel," he said, adding: "I’m also hugely grateful (and more than a bit humbled) that this book has found a home with Faber – I could hardly be in better company."

Faber c.e.o. Stephen Page added: "Faber could not be more delighted to welcome Nathan, not least with this brilliant, necessary book."