Pushkin Press imprint One is to publish journalist Sarah Gilmartin's first novel, Dinner Party: A Tragedy, next year.
Deputy publisher Laura Macaulay acquired British Commonwealth rights from Sallyanne Sweeney at Mulcahy Associates.
Set in Ireland over four periods from the 1990s to the present day, the novel explores how the past informs the present, the "inevitability of childhood damage manifesting in later life" and how "despite everything, we can’t help returning home".
The synopsis explains: "Opening at a fraught dinner hosted by Kate to mark the anniversary of a death in the family, the novel thrillingly unravels into past family secrets and tragedy."
Gilmartin is an arts journalist who reviews debut fiction for the Irish Times, as well as a prize-winning writer of short stories. She is co-editor of the anthology Stinging Fly Stories (2018) and has just completed an Masters of Fine Arts degree at University College Dublin. She recently won Best Playwright for her short play "Match" at the Short+Sweet Dublin festival. Her short stories have been listed for the Sean O’Faolain Short Story Award, the RTE Francis MacManus Short Story Award and Hennessy New Irish Writing. Her story "The Wife" won the 2020 Máirtín Crawford Award at the Belfast Book Festival in June. Earlier this year, she received a bursary for her novel-in-progress from the Arts Council of Ireland.
Macaulay said: "This dark and twisty novel about an Irish family is so beautifully observed with not a word out of place. It’s an exhilarating drama that reads like a very grown up thriller. Sarah Gilmartin is a serious talent and I'm thrilled to be working with her at the start of her fiction-writing career."
Gilmartin added: "As a reviewer, I’ve been reading One debuts for years and I’m delighted to be published by an imprint with such a consistently high standard. To find a good home for my novel in these strange times is really something. I look forward to working with Laura and the rest of the team at Pushkin. Roll on 2021."