Weidenfeld & Nicholson has acquired the next novel by acclaimed storyteller Nathan Englander in a two-book deal.
Commissioning editor Lettice Franklin acquired UK and Commonwealth rights (excluding Canada) from Caspian Dennis at Abner Stein on behalf of Nicole Aragi at Aragi Inc. The new novel, kaddish.com, will be published in hardback, trade paperback, eBook and audio on 26th March. Knopf will issue the title in the US.
Kaddish.com follows Larry, the secular son in a family of Orthodox Jews. Its synopsis reads: “When his father dies, it’s his responsibility to recite the Kaddish, the Jewish prayer for the dead, every day for eleven months. To the horror and dismay of his sister, Larry refuses – imperilling the fate of his father’s soul. To appease her, Larry hatches an ingenious if cynical plan, hiring a stranger through a website called kaddish.com to recite the prayer and shepherd his father’s soul safely to rest.”
Brooklyn author Englander is the author of story collections For the Relief of Unbearable Urges (Faber & Faber) and What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank (W&N), a finalist for the 2013 Pulitzer Prize. He has also written novels The Ministry of Special Cases (Faber & Faber) and Dinner at the Centre of the Earth (W&N). His books have been translated into 22 languages and he has received the Guggenheim Fellowship, a PEN/Malamud Award, the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award and the Sue Kaufman Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
W&N also acquired UK and Commonwealth rights for For the Relief of Unbearable Urges and The Ministry of Special Cases which it will publish after kaddish.com. A new, as yet untitled, novel will follow.
Franklin said: “Nathan Englander is, quite simply, one of the best storytellers of our times. Everything he writes overflows with wit, intelligence, complexity and heart – and kaddish.com is no exception. About fathers and sons, grief and guilt, temptation, faith and the internet, it is a novel we are absolutely thrilled to be publishing at W&N.”