UCLan Publishing has acquired The Unmorrow Curse, a middle-grade fiction title from Jasmine Richards, author, screenwriter and founder of the inclusive fiction studio Storymix.
Hazel Holmes, publisher, bought UK rights from Christabel McKinley of David Higham Associates, with publication scheduled for May 2022.
The Unmorrow Curse will follow new friends Buzz and Mary as they encounter Sunna, Goddess of the Sun and one of the seven-day guardians keeping time in order. In their town, time stands still in an Unmorrow Curse, and the people are forced to repeat the same day over and over again. The two friends must journey across realms to collect magical runes, but the vengeful Norse god Loki will not make it easy.
As a former children’s publisher and the founder of Storymix, Richards creates children’s stories with diverse casts of characters in an "organic, joyful and authentic way", said the publisher.
Holmes said: "We're so excited to be welcoming Jasmine to our growing list. We can't wait to share this magical adventure, and hope that readers will love the story as much as we do. The idea of an Unmorrow Curse will resonate with those who have recently experienced their own lockdown time loop!"
Richards, a Bookseller Rising Star in 2020, added: "UCLan is an award-winning publisher and proven disruptor, and I am so thrilled that I will be published by them next spring. Having been published by a large conglomerate in the US previously, I am excited by UCLan’s ethos of very close collaboration with their authors. Together, we’ll get The Unmorrow Curse, a tale of time standing still, Black kids dodging dragons and gods misbehaving, into the hands of readers everywhere. I can hardly wait!"
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