Pan Macmillan has snapped up a “festive feel-good romantic novel” from debut author Jennifer Bayliss-Jennings in a four-way auction.
UK and Commonwealth rights for The Twelve Dates of Christmas and a second book were acquired by assistant editor Jayne Osborne from Hayley Steed at the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency. The first book will be published as a paperback original in November 2020.
The synopsis states: “When Kate is forced by her best friend to join dating site 'The Twelve Dates of Christmas', she’s thrown into the seasonal spirit with twelve dates, in twelve different locations, with twelve different men. But will Kate find The One in time for Christmas?”
Bayliss-Jennings lives in a small seaside town in Kent and attended Canterbury Christ Church University to study part-time for a degree in Creative and Professional Writing. North American rights were sold at auction to Margo Lipschultz at Penguin Random House/Putnam for simultaneous publication. German rights sold at auction to Goldmann, Dutch rights to Luitingh-Sitjhoff and Czech rights to Baronet.
Bayliss-Jennings said: “I am so excited to be working with Jayne and the team at Pan Macmillan. I had such a lovely time writing The Twelve Dates of Christmas and the whole experience thereafter has been wonderful. Hayley at the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency has had my back from day one and been a constant support.”
Steed added: “Jennifer’s novel had me captivated from the moment I read it – it’s joyous, warm and funny with a stand-out hook and voice, and I was totally swept up in the festive cheer. I’m so thrilled that her debut has found such a fantastic home with Jayne and Pan Macmillan.”