Head of Zeus has snapped up the rights to Melanie Blake's second novel following the release of her debut by Pan last year in a deal brokered by Midas PR.
Publishing director Laura Palmer acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Jason Bartholomew at Midas PR, the first deal by a new literary agenting arm of the firm. Ruthless Women will be published in March 2021 as a hardback, e-book and audiobook, with a mass market paperback in August 2021.
Its synopsis explains: “Ruthless Women takes readers on a wild ride behind the scenes of beloved TV drama 'Falcon Bay', beamed to millions three days a week from its picturesque location in the Channel Islands. But even in this beautiful coastal spot, tensions swirl. And when the show’s ratings start to drop, cast and crew turn against each other. Loyalty, decency and trust are replaced by scandal, betrayal and a ruthless ambition to survive a battle of the sexes, and the dawn of a new era…”
Blake is a former music manager turned acting agent whose debut novel, The Thunder Girls, has been adapted into a play that will tour nationally throughout the UK in 2021.
She said: “What viewers see on screen drama is nothing compared to the dark underbelly of a life behind the lens. Ruthless Women is authentically outrageous—and represents what truly happens behind that velvet rope. I wanted a boutique approach to my second novel, and thanks to my wonderful agent Jason Bartholomew who paired me up with the fantastic Laura Palmer, I have found my perfect fit in a publisher. I have long admired Head of Zeus and am thrilled to be released in hardback in 2021.”
Palmer added: “Ruthless Women is a hugely addictive story of secrets, scandal, betrayal and revenge, that will do for TV what The Devil Wears Prada did for fashion. Melanie Blake is a force of nature, and her own rags-to-riches story is as astonishing as anything in her books. I can’t wait to work together to create a bestseller.”
Bartholomew commented: “I am absolutely thrilled to have struck a significant deal with Head of Zeus for Melanie’s new book Ruthless Women. The deal represents a continuation of our work with Melanie as a long-term client. Following on from the success of The Thunder Girls—in print and on stage as a play—Ruthless Women will surely launch Melanie as a global household name, and become a sure-fire UK bestseller.
“This deal with Head of Zeus represents a significant new arm to the Midas brand. We will be shortly announcing new services as we relaunch our website in June. Among these services, Midas will act as a literary agency for a select number of authors.”