Poet Amy Key’s "dazzling" debut non-fiction book, inspired by Joni Mitchell's "Blue" album, will be published by Jonathan Cape following a seven-way auction.
In her first acquisition as the imprint's editorial director, Željka Marošević secured UK and Commonwealth rights from Angelique Tran Van Sang, the editor-turned-agent's own first deal for Felicity Bryan Associates. Arrangements in Blue will be published in spring 2023.
Cape said: “Amy Key first heard Joni Mitchell’s seminal album 'Blue' as a young woman. Full of desire and longing, it set her up to expect a life shaped by romance. But that didn’t happen for her. Now in her 40s, she begins to examine the realities of a life lived in the absence of romantic love. With candour and warmth, Arrangements in Blue explores the difficult feelings we are usually too ashamed to discuss: loneliness, vulnerability and failure. Yet the result is a generous and open-hearted book about building a life on your own terms, which inspires us to live and love more honestly.”
Key is a poet and writer based in London. She is the author of two collections of poetry, Luxe (Salt, 2013) and Isn’t Forever (Bloodaxe, 2018), which was a book of the year in the Guardian, New Statesman, Times and Irish Times. Her poems have been widely published and anthologised, and her essays have appeared in At the Pond (Daunt Books, 2019), Granta, Poetry Review and elsewhere. Her essay about Mitchell, "A Breed of Blue", was published by Granta last December.
Marošević said: “Reading Amy’s writing feels like those lingering post-dinner conversations you have with friends where no subject is off the table and you leave feeling nourished and loved. I know it’s a book I’ll be handing to friends for years to come. Amy is a dazzling new voice in non-fiction and it is such a privilege to welcome her to Jonathan Cape as my first acquisition for the list."
Key added: “I am thrilled to be joining Jonathan Cape’s list which is home to so many writers I love. Having long admired Željka Marošević’s editorial instincts, there is no one I trusted more to work with me on this book. I am so grateful to my agent Angelique Tran Van Sang for her passion for this project and I am excited for Arrangements in Blue to reach its readers.”