Historian and author Keith Lowe has moved to William Collins after a decade at Viking Penguin.
In a two-book deal, negotiated by Simon Trewin at WME, William Collins’ publishing director Arabella Pike acquired UK and Commonwealth rights excluding Canada in Prisoners of History – A History of the Second World War in 25 Memorials, and Naples 1944 – Corruption, Exploitation and Chaos in the Wake of the Allied Liberation.
Prisoners of History will be published in 2020 for the 75th anniversary of the end of World War Two, with Naples 1944 slated for 2024.
Lowe’s previous prize-winning histories on the Second World War include Savage Continent, Inferno and The Fear and the Freedom (Penguin) - the latter his biggest hit shifting 16,363 copies. Altogether Lowe has sold 43,302 books for £507,556, all figures according to Nielsen BookScan. He was also previously a literary novelist.
Published widely internationally, his foreign language rights will be handled by James Munro at WME.
Lowe studied English Literature at Manchester University and spent 12 years working as a history publisher before embarking on a full-time career as a writer and historian.
Pike said: “We are excited to be working with Keith Lowe on his two new books. I’ve long admired him as a historian and could not be more thrilled that he has joined William Collins.
“Prisoners of History will examine our global obsession with memorialising the Second World War whilst the second book is a deep history of the liberation of Naples, one of the most morally ambiguous moments in the history of the war. It will be the first major study in the English language.”