Hodder Children’s Books, an imprint of the Hachette Children’s Group, has signed the debut novel by Faber Academy graduate Lydia Ruffles.
The Taste of Blue Light is about a 17-year-old who has suffered some kind of blackout. The novel touches upon art, therapy, synaesthesia, mental illness, elitism, love, friendship, trauma and obsession, and Ruffles was inspired by her own long-term neurological condition.
Anne McNeil, senior publisher at Hachette Children’s Group, and editor Polly Lyall Grant acquired world English language rights from Clare Conville at Conville & Walsh.
McNeil said: “We are incredibly proud to be publishing Lydia; her voice is vividly unique. Whilst The Taste of Blue Light is by no means the same story as The Bell Jar, Lydia’s main character, Lux, has parallels with Plath’s Esther. Both are young women who are privileged in the opportunities presented to them, but both women feel out of place and suffocated, and unable to touch upon why they feel the way they do.”
The Taste of Blue Light will publish in summer 2017.