Hodder & Stoughton has confirmed a two-book deal with actress, director, screenwriter and entrepreneur Talulah Riley.
The publisher acquired Riley's 'major' fiction debut, Acts of Love, and one further novel in a deal done by Carolyn Mays and Emily Kitchin pre-empting world rights from Jon Elek at United Agents.
Acts of Love is described as "a wonderful modern will-they-won’t-they tale that draws on an age-old conflict". It tells the story of Bernadette, a journalist who has built her career on her talent for lulling powerful men into a false sense of security, then exposing them in her ruthless profile pieces. But in Radley Blake, she may have met her match...
The books is said to surprise with its "sensitive portrayal of the vulnerability hiding behind even the most confident exterior" and promises to sweep readers up in "the delicious tension" between characters Radley and Bernadette.
Hodder said: "Talulah Riley is a tremendously exciting new talent and with Bernadette and Radley she has given us two passionate, unforgettable characters and a thrilling will- they-won’t-they dynamic which is as compulsive as it is utterly irresistible, and a book which is as stimulating for the intellect as it is stirring for the heart. We are absolutely thrilled to be launching Talulah’s career as a novelist at Hodder, and we can’t wait to put our exciting campaign for Acts of Love into action."
Riley, also the co-founder and c.o.o. of mobile app Forrge said of her debut: "I am so pleased to be working with Hodder and Stoughton on Acts of Love. To have a published novel will be a childhood dream actualised, and I feel impossibly happy at the prospect."
Acts of Love will be published in hardback and e-book in August this year.
Rights have already been sold in Israel (KInneret Zmora), Hungary (Libri Kiado), Poland (Wydawnictwo Otwarte), Portugal (Leya), and Italy (Feltrinelli).