Pan Macmillan has bought a debut thriller by a former senior editor at Cosmopolitan.
Assistant editor Louise Buckley and publishing director Wayne Brookes bought UK and Commonwealth rights for Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll from Simon & Schuster in the US, which bought the book at auction for “an impressive six-figure sum”.
The book follows 28-year-old Ani Fanelli, whose “seemingly perfect life begins to buckle and crack as a violent and shocking past gradually comes to light”.
Buckley said: “This is the best thriller I’ve read in a really long time. As soon as I started reading, I was gripped by Knoll’s razor-sharp storytelling and strong complicated heroine.
“Gillian Flynn comparisons are definitely apt. Knoll is a remarkable talent and I can’t wait to publish her.”
Knoll is a former senior editor of Cosmopolitan magazine in the US, and is now articles editor at Self magazine.
She said: “Ani is a complex, flawed individual, and I wanted to challenge readers to root for an unlikeable female character the way we do a Tony Soprano or Don Draper.
“It was important to me that the book features a female lead with a strong, polarising voice and a gripping storyline, but also has heart.”
Pan Macmillan will publish Luckiest Girl Alive in trade paperback and e-book in May 2015, and in paperback in May 2016.