Author and Oxford academic Harry Sidebottom is moving to Bonnier Zaffre to publish two new Roman-set historical thrillers.
Sidebottom most recently published the Throne of the Caesars series with HarperCollins, after moving to the publisher in 2012, prior to which he was published with Penguin.
Kate Parkin, executive director for adult fiction at Bonnier Zaffre acquired world rights from agent Jim Gill at United Agents.
Parkin describes the first book in the contract, The Last Hour, as "as much Jack Reacher as Jack Aubrey". Set in the 3rd century it takes place in the city of Rome itself over 24 hours and tells the story of a race against time to prevent the assassination of the Emperor.
Parkin goes on to say: "I have long-admired Harry Sidebottom’s books and am very excited to be taking him in this new direction. The Last Hour is '24 in Ancient Rome', a thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat from first page to last, and never lets up. We are proud to welcome Harry to the Bonnier Zaffre list."
Sidebottom said: "I could not be more pleased to be joining Bonnier Zaffre. I have loved writing The Last Hour and I am sure that the impressive focus and energy of Bonnier Zaffre team will bring it to the widest possible readership."
The Last Hour will publish on 19th April 2018.