Harvill Secker has pre-empted a “clever, sharp and hugely entertaining” debut psychological thriller from Vera Kurian in a six-figure deal.
Publishing director Liz Foley acquired UK and Commonweath rights for Never Saw Me Coming from Rebecca Scherer at the Jane Rotrosen Agency, for publication in September 2021.
The publisher said: “Reminiscent of Caroline Kepnes’s You and Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl, Never Saw Me Coming is set on a college campus in Washington DC, where a renowned psychologist runs an experimental study for students diagnosed with psychopathy. Told from the alternating viewpoints of three of the students—each with their own motivations for being in the programme, including revenge—things start to unravel when one of them is found murdered and it becomes obvious they’re all in danger.”
Kurian is a Washington DC-based writer with a doctorate in social psychology.
Foley said: “Never Saw Me Coming is a real treat—a clever, sharp and hugely entertaining thriller with fantastic characters and a vividly conjured campus setting. The student psychopaths at its heart really worked their manipulative magic on me. Vera Kurian exploded my lockdown ennui, for which I'll be eternally grateful to her.”