Legend Press has bagged a “warm and poignant” debut novel exploring identity, race and mental illness by writer and painter Alex Morrall.
Commissioning editor Lauren Parsons acquired world rights to Helen and the Grandbees from Philippa Sitters at David Godwin Associates. The novel will be published on 1st September 2020.
The publisher explained: “The novel begins when Helen’s daughter, Lily, tracks her down twenty years after her adoption, and the story unfolds over the years that follow, as we watch Lily raise her own children; Helen’s ‘grandbees’. Reuniting with her mother means the world to Lily, but tensions between the two women are soon evident. Helen refuses to explain Lily’s racial origin – Helen is white, while Lily identifies as black – she won’t talk about her father, or tell her about her grandparents because the truth is hidden in a traumatic past. When it’s clear her ‘grandbees’ are in danger, tangled up in her daughter’s damaging relationship, Helen must find the courage to step in, confronting the fears that haunt her the most.”
Sitters said: “I fell in love with this engaging and moving novel. The characters Alex has drawn live on the margins, she has given them a dignified voice despite their messy lives. This is exactly the sort of book I think we need to be publishing in order to broaden the range of voices we’re reading.”