Three buys for Scribe

Three buys for Scribe

Scribe has acquired a guide to war in classical tragedy, a book of cocktails and snacks inspired by Shakespeare, and an epic novel set in Georgia.

Scribe bought UK and Commonwealth rights for Bryan Doerries’ The Theatre of War direct from the Zoe Pagnamenta Agency.

Doerries, who studied classical philology at university, established a troupe that stages dramatised readings of ancient Greek plays for those returning from the battlefield or other traumas in need of re-enactment and catharsis. His book is a guide to how classical tragedy can be life-changing and “a roar against forgetting”.

Scribe will publish the book in the UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand in October this year, while Knopf will publish in the US and Canada in September.

The publisher has also acquired UK and Commonwealth rights in Shakespeare, Not Stirred by English professors and founders of the Everyday Shakespeare project, Caroline Bicks and Michelle Ephraim. Rights were bought from Wolf Literary.

In the book, Bicks and Ephraim combine wordplay with original cocktails and snacks to create a fun manual for life’s highs and lows, from "Get Thee to a Winery: Girls’ Night Out" to "Exit, Pursued by a Beer: Drowning Your Sorrows".

Scribe will publish the title this autumn in hardback, as will Penguin’s Perigee imprint in North America.

The third book Scribe has acquired is Brilka’s Book by Nino Haratischvili, which has already been published in Germany under the title Das Achte Leben (Live the Eighth).

World English language rights were bought from Joachim Unseld at Frankfurter Verlagsanstalt via Anna Webber at United Agents. Scribe has commissioned Charlotte Collins and Ruth Martin to deliver a full English translation of the book. Translation rights have already been sold in Dutch and Turkish.

Brilka’s Book is a century-spanning epic tale about the lives of the women of one spirited Georgian family across six generations. It opens in 1900 with the birth of Stasia, daughter to a wealthy Georgian chocolatier, who dreams of becoming a ballerina but instead marries a White Guard at 17, only for the October Revolution to break out. The Communists prevail and Stasia’s sister comes to the predatory attention of Lavrentii Beria, while Stalin and the World War lurk in the background. A century on from Stasia’s childhood, civil war again breaks out at the Russian Empire’s fringes and Georgia reasserts its rights as Stasia’s great-granddaughter Niza tells her niece Brilka the whole story.

Haratischvili has lived in Germany for over two decades, since her parents emigrated from her native Georgia. Scribe will publish Brilka’s Book in 2017, ahead of Georgia being Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Bookfair in 2018.