Two Roads has acquired the international bestselling graphic memoir The Arab of the Future, by former Charlie Hebdo contributor and cartoonist Riad Sattouf.
Assistant editor at the John Murray imprint, Federico Andornino, acquired British Commonwealth (excluding Canada) rights for the title in a three-book deal from Devon Mazzone at Metropolitan Books, on behalf of Marleen Seegers at 2 Seas Agency.
The Arab of the Future paints a picture of recent Middle East history as told from the point of view of a young boy. In a "striking, virtuoso graphic style", and described as "darkly funny", it tells the story of Sattouf's nomadic childhood growing up in rural France, Gaddafi's Libya, and Assad's Syria, under the roof of his father, a Syrian Pan-Arabist with grandiose dreams for the Arab nation.
The New York Times called it "a disquieting yet essential read" and the Guardian picked the "page turner" as one of its best graphic books of 2015. Le Monde said it confirms "Riad Sattouf's place among the greatest cartoonists of his generation".
Andornino said: "I have been a big fan of Riad Sattouf’s The Arab of the Future ever since it became a runaway hit in France and I am very excited to publish this award-winning trilogy in the UK. It’s so refreshing to read a book that goes beyond the sensationalistic headlines about the Middle East and focuses on the darkly funny and poignant portrait of a boy who never seems to fit in. A true gem."
Sattouf said: "I am so happy and proud to have The Arab of the Future published in the UK (and beyond) by Two Roads: I simply can’t wait to hear feedback from English readers and share my story with a whole new set of booklovers.”
Sattouf is a bestselling cartoonist and filmmaker who grew up in Syria and Libya and now lives in Paris. He is the author of four comics series in France and a former contributor to the satirical publication Charlie Hebdo. Sattouf is now a weekly columnist for l’Obs. He also directed the films "The French Kissers" and "Jacky in the Women’s Kingdom".
The Arab of the Future is Sattouf’s first work to appear in English. Two Roads will publish it on 7th April 2016 in trade paperback, priced £18.99.