OWN IT! has signed a "very special debut" by poet J J Bola entitled No Place to Call Home following a "keenly and closely contested" auction.
Crystal Mahey-Morgan, founder and publisher at OWN IT!, acquired World English print, audio and multi-media rights (excluding print and non-enhanced e-book in the US and Canada) to the title in a deal negotiated with Maria Cardona of Pontas Literary & Film Agency.
Born in Kinshasa, The Congo and raised in London, Bola is currently doing a MA in Creative Writing at Birkbeck University of London, and is one of the three recipients of the Kit de Waal Scholarship.
With "great" characters and "seamless" prose, set between London and the Congo, No Place to Call Home is a tale of belonging, identity and immigration, of hope and hopelessness, of loss –not by death, but by distance – and, by no means the least, of love.
Cardona said: "At the Pontas Agency we couldn’t be more delighted. J J Bola is a very special writer with a unique voice. Crystal’s passion and vision for this debut is exactly what we were looking for and we expect great things. There’s already been much registered interest from different corners of the world."
Mahey-Morgan added: "J J Bola is a beautiful storyteller and this is a unique and accomplished novel made all the more exciting by the fact that it’s a debut. It is both light of touch but deep in feeling and meaning. Full of localised nuances in different times and places and masterfully woven together to simultaneously capture the essence of human heartache and human triumph. I’m confident that J J has an exciting career as a literary fiction author ahead of him and I couldn’t be happier to be a part of his journey from the very beginning."
OWN IT! will publish No Place to Call Home in June 2017.