Granta Books has acquired “exquisitely written” novel about China’s “revolutionary” history by Madeleine Thien.
Editorial director Bella Lacey acquired UK & Commonwealth rights excluding Canada to Do Not Say We Have Nothing from Sarah Chalfant at the Wylie Agency.
The novel by Thien, the Canadian-born author of Dogs at the Perimeter and Certainty, is about the far-reaching effects of China’s history, told through the fates of two families that "weave and twist" across three generations from 1940s to the present day. Do Not Say We Have Nothing explores the effects of revolution on personal and national identity and the "traumatic legacy of China’s revolutionary fervour still resonating for the new generation".
Lacey said: "It’s an exceptional achievement, in its epic scale, its ground-breaking exploration of the persuasive power of Chinese revolution, and its lovingly imagined Dickensian cast of characters. Thien’s writing about the Cultural Revolution and the Beijing Student protests – which led to the Tiananmen Square massacre – gives a remarkable insight into contemporary Chinese culture and politics. I’m thrilled that Madeleine Thien will be returning to the Granta list with this magnificent novel."
Granta will publish Do Not Say We Have Nothing in July 2016.