HarperFiction has scooped a "feel-good romcom" set at the Cannes film festival by debut author Niamh Hargan.
Publisher Lynne Drew and editorial assistant Lucy Stewart acquired UK and Commonwealth rights, including Canada, for Twelve Days in May, from Sheila Crowley and Sabhbh Curran at Curtis Brown. It will be published in paperback in May 2022.
The synopsis says: "Opening at the festival, the romantic comedy follows Lizzy, who works for the Scottish film board, and Ciaran, now a well-known film director, after a chance encounter at the festival offers them a second chance to rekindle an old romance. Ciaran’s film, all about a student love affair that has uncanny similarities to their own friendship 13 years earlier, finds itself in hot water and Lizzy is the only person who can come to the rescue with the true story of their time together. The only problem is that they haven’t seen each other, or spoken, since."
Hargan was born and raised in Derry, Northern Ireland, and is an alumnus of Curtis Brown Creative, the agency’s creative writing school. She is an entertainment lawyer by profession, and said much of her insider knowledge of the film industry, including its quirks and behind-the-scenes chaos, directly inform this novel.
She said: “When it became clear that I wasn’t going to be attending the festival as usual in 2020, I began to write about it instead. It’s a very unique environment, both exactly like and entirely unlike what I might have once expected, which struck me as an interesting jumping-off point for a story. A solid 70 per cent of the whole thing, as I mention in the very first chapter of my novel, does seem to be drinking rosé and talking about the need for strong female characters from morning until night, both of which I've always been pretty good at. I’m thrilled that Twelve Days in May has now found its perfect home at HarperFiction, and feel very lucky to be working with Lynne, Lucy and the whole team."