Vintage hosted its upcoming authors at a breakfast preview on Monday (25th July) to give media a taste of what fiction is to come from the publisher in 2018.
Authors who presented at the Blacks Club in the heart of London's Soho included Mary Lynn Bracht, whose Korean tale White Chrysanthemum, about two sisters separated by war, was the subject of a "significant" six-figure pre-empt during last year's London Book Fair, as well as Imogen Hermes Gowar, whose debut The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock was also secured in a six-figure pre-empt, following a 10-way auction last year.
Speaking about her debut, which follows the tale of a courtesan and a widowed merchant brought together by the arrival of a mermaid in 18th-century London, Hermes Gowar described how she wrote the book to amuse herself while taking a break from what she thought was a "more serious" novel. Taking inspiration from the museums she was working in, The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock draws on a real artefact in the British museum - a mummified monkey’s body stitched with a fish’s tail.
Mary Lynn Bracht, Kerry Andrew and Imogen Hermes Gowar
Alternative folk artist Kerry Andrew meanwhile said she got the kickstart she needed to develop her book while taking an online Faber Academy course. She told the room that while her Scottish highlands-set book Swansong was a retelling of an old story, sprung from folk songs and mythologies, it would be suffused with modern references including BFFs (which stands for best friends forever) and Instagram.
Closing the event, Serbian-born novelist Vesna Goldsworthy - whose Great Gatsby-inspired novel about Russian oligarchs in London was longlisted for the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction last year- spoke about a chance meeting with Princess Diana as well as her new book Monsieur Ka, "an entrancing portrait of love in exile - with a literary twist".
White Chrysanthemum, The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock and Swansong will publish in January 2018 and Monsieur Ka will publish in February 2018.