Trapeze has signed a new two-book deal with thriller writer Alison Belsham, taking her debut The Tattoo Thief on into a trilogy.
The two new novels in the Sullivan and Mullins crime series are Poison Ink and Death’s Needle. Sam Eades, editorial director at Trapeze, acquired world rights (all languages) in the books through Jenny Brown at Jenny Brown Associates, who signed Belsham after she won the Pitch Perfect event at the Bloody Scotland Crime Writing Festival. Belsham is now due to return to Stirling this week as a headliner on the festival programme, teaching a masterclass in pitching.
The newly signed books follow on from Belsham's debut The Tattoo Thief, which has now sold in 13 countries. Film and television rights have since been acquired by DLT Entertainment, through Emily Hayward Whitlock at the Artists Partnership, expressing confidence the book's "incredibly rich world and an exhilarating plot" would attract "an audience with an appetite for complex thrillers".
Eades said the first "ambitious follow-up" to The Tattoo Thief, also featuring series leads Francis Sullivan and Marni Mullins, had "a killer hook" and "takes readers on a terrifying tour of subterranean Brighton". In Poison Ink, a young woman is attacked and left fighting for her life in hospital. 24 hours later she dies and a deadly tattoo is discovered on her body. When another young woman disappears, Detective Francis Sullivan and his team fear a serial killer walks the streets of Brighton. His team identify a suspect, Alex Mullins, son of his former lover, Marni. Can Francis forget their shared past and save the next victim before it is too late?
Poison Ink will be published by Trapeze in May 2019 in export trade paperback, e-book and audio with the mass market paperback in September 2019.