Jonathan Cape has acquired The Hungover Games, a memoir by journalist Sophie Heawood about life as a single mother, following a "fierce" auction.
Rachel Cugnoni, publisher of Vintage, and Bea Hemming, deputy publishing director of Jonathan Cape, acquired UK and Commonwealth rights to the book from Georgia Garrett at Rogers, Coleridge and White as part of a two-book deal, and will publish in hardback, trade paperback and e-book in spring 2019.
According to Cape, The Hungover Games is a true story of single motherhood and about what happens when nice Mr Right never turns up, so you have a baby with glamorous Mr Wrong. It’s also about what it’s like raising a child when your life up until then has been one long party. It is pitching it as "Bridget Jones for the Tinder generation" as well as "bitingly well-observed".
Heawood, who writes for Vogue and the Sunday Times, said: "It’s a bad time to be at a loss for words but I don’t know how to explain quite how delighted I am to have signed a deal with Jonathan Cape. When I met the team at Cape and Vintage, and saw all my favourite writers lining the walls – plus a photograph of Martin Amis looking weirdly sexually attractive in the 1970s – I knew I had come home."
Hemming said: "I’ve loved and admired Sophie Heawood’s writing for years. She has a rare ability to conjure up a whole novel in a single column, and it will be thrilling to see her skills as a storyteller given free rein in her memoir. I know that this book will resonate not only with mothers but with a whole generation who feel they have somehow reached middle age without reaching adulthood. We’re enormously proud and excited to bring her to the Cape list."