Scribe has acquired Greenwood by Michael Christie, an intergenerational saga with echoes of Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch and David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas.
Spanning 100 years, this "masterfully-plotted" literary novel follows the lives of four characters, all of them somehow connected to a remote island off the Pacific coast of British Columbia, which will become one of the world’s last forests.
The story begins in 2034, with a frustrated young forest ranger whose desire to protect some of the world’s last trees is at odds with her company’s commercial ambitions. It then travels backwards, in stages, to the Great Depression, when a reclusive man finds and reluctantly keeps an abandoned baby, setting off a series of events that will change the course of his life, and the lives of those around him. "With an ambitious structure, which sees Christie spiral back out again, revisiting each of the characters and time periods the reader met on the way in, it is complex, gripping, and epic", said the publisher.
UK & Commonwealth rights were acquired by Scribe Australia’s Marika Webb-Pullman and Scribe UK’s Molly Slight.
They said: "Finding out how all these characters are connected is one of the great pleasures of this novel, which has echoes of David Mitchell in both its structure and its environmental concerns. It’s tremendously enjoyable and completely absorbing — and very cleverly constructed. We are so excited to be working with Michael Christie, and thrilled to be part of bringing his work to UK and Australian audiences."
Christie is the author of If I Fall, If I Die (Windmill Books), which was longlisted for Canada’s Scotiabank Giller Prize, won the Northern Lit Award, and was selected as a New York Times Editors Choice. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Globe & Mail.
Greenwood will be published in March 2019 in Australia and May 2019 in the UK. Rights were acquired from Marion Duvert on behalf of Bill Clegg at the Clegg Agency. It will be published in the US by Crown Hogarth and in Canada by McClelland & Stewart in spring 2019. Translation rights have been sold in Dutch (Signatuur), French (Albin Michel), German (Penguin Verlag), and Italian (Marsilio).