HarperCollins has acquired Darkmouth, a monster-hunting adventure series for 8-12 year-olds, written by Shane Hegarty, arts editor for the Irish Times.
HC UK fiction publishing director Nick Lake and editorial director at HC US Phoebe Yeh bought world English language rights in four books from agent Marianne Gunn O'Connor.
In the world of the series, there are various towns where the border between our dimension and the dimension of the monsters, called Legends, is weak. Legend Hunters keep the population safe, though for a while, the Legends have stopped crossing ove—apart from in one place, Darkmouth, in Ireland. Central character Finn is the son of the last remaining Legend Hunter, and must pick up the skills himself, but he is not very good at it.
Lake said: "Shane is the Real Thing. His warm, witty, wonderful voice caused a frenzy of excitement for everyone in the offices last week and I'm thrilled that we'll be publishing this hilarious and distinctive new writer."
HCUK publisher Ann-Janine Murtagh added: "This was quite simply a must-have book for us. We pride ourselves on being the house of homegrown British and Irish talent here at HarperCollins and creating classic children's global brands of the future."