Quercus has pre-empted a standalone thriller by journalist and author Victoria Selman with a “significant” six-figure offer.
Publisher Stef Bierwerth secured UK and Commonwealth rights to Truly, Darkly, Deeply from David Headley at the D H H Literary Agency. It will be published as Quercus' flagship crime thriller publication in July 2022.
Truly, Darkly, Deeply follows 12-year-old Sophie and her mother, Amelia-Rose, who move to London from Massachusetts where they meet the charismatic Matty Melgren, who quickly becomes an intrinsic part of their lives. But as the relationship between the two adults fractures, a serial killer begins targeting young women with a striking resemblance to Amelia-Rose.
When Matty is eventually sent down for multiple murders, questions remain as to his guilt – questions which ultimately destroy both women. Nearly 20 years later, Sophie receives a letter from Battlemouth Prison informing her Matty is dying and wants to meet. It seems Sophie might finally get the answers she craves. But will the truth set her free or bury her deeper?
Selman is the author of the critically acclaimed Ziba MacKenzie series and has been previously published by Thomas & Mercer. Her debut novel, Blood for Blood, was shortlisted for the CWA Debut Dagger Award and was an Amazon Charts number one bestseller for five weeks. She writes for the Independent and co-hosts the “Crime Time FM” podcast with fellow writers Barry Forshaw and Paul Burke.
Bierwerth said: “I’m absolutely delighted to welcome Victoria Selman to Quercus. Truly, Darkly, Deeply is one of those thrillers that are very hard not to finish in one sitting. Brilliantly written from Sophie’s perspective and mainly set in 80s London, it’s a serial killer thriller of a very different kind that really gets under your skin. It’s an incredibly filmic novel that reminded me of watching TV series like 'Mindhunter' and Matty Melgren is a character that is guaranteed to captivate readers. We will launch Truly, Darkly, Deeply as a flagship publication on our thriller list next summer.”
Selman said: “I’m hugely excited to be working with Stefanie Bierwerth and the Quercus team who have such enthusiasm for this book and an innate understanding of what I want to achieve with it. Truly, Darkly, Deeply has found the perfect home.”