Raven swoops for Seong-Sun's 'slick, sharp' English debut

Raven swoops for Seong-Sun's 'slick, sharp' English debut

Raven Books has landed The Consultant by Im Seong-Sun, a novel about a murder-planning consultant, translated by An Seon Jae.

Billed as a good fit for fans of "Squid Game", "Parasite" and "Dexter", the synopsis explains: "Working from home in a disconnected corporate structure, the Consultant is just like you and me: bored, a little disaffected, but ultimately good at his job. Until his next ‘customer’ turns out to be someone he not only knows but cares about, and he begins to question his role for the first time. As he slowly begins to understand the real scope of the Company’s work, he must decide whether he wants to keep his boring, corporate job, or try to save himself." 

Managing editor Sara Helen Binney acquired world English-language and audio rights from Barbara J Zitwer to publish the author's work in English for the first time. The Consultant will be published in summer 2023 by the Bloomsbury imprint.

Binney described the novel as "slick, sharp, fun and very knowing. The Consultant is a breath of fresh air among conversations about the future of work and the post-pandemic return to the office. The murders the ‘consultant’ gets away with and the brilliant skewering of corporate culture had me laughing out loud and gasping in horror, often at the same time."

Zitwer said: "Only a Korean author would come up with the idea of a murder designer who is actually a puppet of a corporation that controls every part of his life, including paying for plastic surgery for his love interest, his secretary, behind his back! Im Seong-Sun proves that there must be something out-of-this-world in the water and air of Korea that produced him. His sensational, ironic, funny, biting, philosophical thriller takes the reader on a new, throbbing, suspense-filled journey where there is no turning back."

Seong-Sun is a critically acclaimed Korean novelist who overcame agraphia—a neurological condition causing the inability to write—in order to write The Consultant, which went on to win the Segye Ilbo Literary Prize. 

Since then, he has written 10 books and won Korea’s Young Artist Award for his short story "The Sheeple Wandering a Gallery and their Predators", and the Korean SF Award for his sci-fi novel Ouroboros. He writes scripts and adapts books for commercial films, and is currently working on a TV series.

An Seon Jae, also known as Brother Anthony of Taizé, is an award-winning translator whose work has won the Korea Times Translation Award, the Koran PEN Translation Award, the Daesan Translation Award and the Korean Republic’s Literary Award. He was awarded an honorary MBE in 2015.