Simon & Schuster is to publish Let Us Dream from Pope Francis in December.
The book was written by biographer Austen Ivereigh in both English and Spanish and is the result of exchanges between the author and the Pope in the weeks following the coronavirus lockdown.
It will be published in dual English and Spanish editions simultaneously, including by S&S' audio division and its international companies in the United States, Canada, Australia and India. Publisher Stephen Rubin and vice- president and executive editor Eamon Dolan acquired world rights, first serial rights and audio rights from agent William Barry.
The synopsis states: "In this revelatory, uplifting and practical book, the pre-eminent spiritual leader explains why we must—and how we can—make the world safer, fairer and healthier for all people now. In the Covid crisis, the beloved shepherd of over one billion Catholics saw the cruelty and inequity of our society exposed more vividly than ever before. He also saw, in the resilience, generosity and creativity of so many people, the means to rescue our society, our economy and our planet. In direct, powerful prose, Pope Francis urges us not to let the pain be in vain.
"He begins Let Us Dream by exploring what this crisis can teach us about how to handle upheaval of any kind in our own lives and the world at large. With unprecedented candour, he reveals how three crises in his own life changed him dramatically for the better. By its very nature, he shows, crisis presents us with a choice: we make a grievous error if we try to return to some pre-crisis state. But if we have the courage to change, we can emerge from the crisis better than before.
"Francis then offers a brilliant, scathing critique of the systems and ideologies that conspired to produce the current crisis, from a global economy obsessed with profit and heedless of the people and environment it harms, to politicians who foment their people’s fear and use it to increase their own power at their people’s expense. He reminds us that Christians’ first duty is to serve others, especially the poor and the marginalised, just as Jesus did.
"Finally, the Pope offers an inspiring and actionable blueprint for building a better world for all humanity by putting the poor and the planet at the heart of new thinking. For this plan, he draws not only on sacred sources, but on the latest findings from renowned scientists, economists, activists and other thinkers. Yet rather than simply offer prescriptions, he shows how ordinary people acting together despite their differences can discover unforeseen possibilities.
"Along the way, he offers dozens of wise and surprising observations on the value of unconventional thinking, on why we must dramatically increase women’s leadership in the Church and throughout society, on what he learned while scouring the streets of Buenos Aires with garbage-pickers, and much more."
Commenting on the acquisition, Dolan said: "Any wisdom the Pope had to offer would be extremely valuable now, but what made me believe Let Us Dream might actually change the world is how clear and practical his guidance is, and how deeply comforting is the voice with which he delivers it. Here the Pope sounds closer to us—and even kinder—than we’ve ever heard him before."
Holly Harris, acquiring UK publishing director, said: "We are living through extraordinary times and Let Us Dream is a powerful reflection on what that means for all of us. We are so thrilled to be publishing this astonishing book."
The book will be released on 1st December.
Pope Francis' previous titles include The Joy of the Gospel (2013) and The Name of God is Mercy (2016).