Myriad Editions has picked up a “magnificent” road trip tale by Lisa Blower about two childhood sweethearts reunited in later life.
Publishing director Candida Lacey bought world English language rights from Philippa Brewster at Georgina Capel Associates. Myriad will publish Pondweed in July 2020.
“One Monday afternoon, around three o’clock, pond supplies salesman Selwyn Robby arrives home towing the Toogood Aquatics exhibition caravan and orders his like-wife, Imogen ‘Ginny’ Dare, to get into the car,” the blurb states. “He’s taking her on a little holiday, he says. To Wales. So begins their road trip west but it’s a fishy business towing this caravan with its saucy mermaid curtains, fully stocked bar, and the words ‘For your pondlife and beyond’ in the slanted red font favoured by Pound shops. And Ginny must untangle the pondweed to get to the bottom of it, even it does mean unearthing her own murky-watered past to find out.”
Blower is the author of short story collection It’s Gone Dark Over Bill’s Mother’s (Myriad) and Arnold Bennett Prize-shortlisted debut novel Sitting Ducks (Fair Acre). She is a senior lecturer in English and Creative Writing at Wolverhampton University.
Lacey said: “Pondweed is a love story in the slow lane, a road novel heading west from Stoke-on-Trent, a salesman kidnapping the love of his life in a stolen caravan, a odd couple of 60-somethings elbowing their way through the disgruntlements in their relationship. We care about these people and how they reach for an escape route, or just the promise of one. Behind the physical sense of being lost, this is a novel about dealing with loss, and that self-loss-ness that comes with age and retirement. Blower’s writing triumphs in the detail she picks out with sometimes comic, sometimes devastating but always memorable effect.”