Scribe has signed a "genre-defying" German debut called Elly - "a literary novel with all the best qualities of a thriller", about a family in crisis after a child goes missing only to reappear years later.
Scribe UK’s Molly Slight acquired world English language rights to Elly by Maike Wetzel from Anke Grahl at Schöffling & Co, with Lyn Marven signed up to translate.
Pitched as "a gripping tale of grief, longing, and doubt" perfect for fans of Lullaby, The Child in Time, and The Lovely Bones, the short literary thriller promises to take one of every parent’s greatest fears and let it play out to an emotionally powerful, memorable climax. It tells the story of a family torn apart by a missing child who then reappears years later. But is it the same girl? And if not, who is she?
The book's author, Wetzel, is a writer and filmmaker, whose short stories have already been published and translated widely, including a full volume published by Comma Press in the UK. For the unfinished manuscript of Elly, she also received the Robert Gernhardt Prize and the Martha Saalfeld Prize.
Slight commented on the deal: "This is an emotionally powerful and astute novel which has shades of domestic thrillers like Lullaby, but also transcends genre boundaries, becoming in the end a fascinating exploration of how well we can ever truly know one another or ourselves. It is utterly compelling and we are all thrilled to be working with Maike on the English language edition."
Scribe will publish in both the UK and Australia in 2020.