Maori-inspired debut novel to OWN IT!

Maori-inspired debut novel to OWN IT!

OWN IT! has signed a "wonderful" debut novel set in London and New Zealand by Jill Johnson entitled The Time Before The Time To Come.

Publisher Crystal Mahey-Morgan acquired world English print, audio and multi-media rights to the title from Maria Cardona of Pontas Literary & Film Agency.

The Time Before The Time To Come is inspired by Johnson’s Maori heritage. Set between London and New Zealand and intertwining past and present, the book follows the protagonist’s path of self-discovery as she unwraps layers of her past and tries to make sense of her present.

Cardona said: "At the Pontas Agency we couldn’t be more delighted. Jill is a great writer with many interesting stories in her. We are completely thrilled, and love the passion everyone at OWN IT! has for this debut novel."

Mahey-Morgan said: "Jill is a talented storyteller. The Time Before The Time To Come beautifully encapsulates the family ties that exist from one generation to the next and explores the significance of holding on to your roots and culture as a way of not letting go of yourself. A brilliantly crafted novel that opens a window into Maori culture, with strong women, epic journeys and heartbreaking revelations, The Time Before The Time to Come is at its core a book of hope. Made all the more powerful by the fact that it’s based on Jill’s own family, this is a novel that will stay with you long after you put it down and it’s an honour to be publishing it".

Johnson has lived in South East Asia, Europe and New Zealand. She has owned an editorial cartoon gallery, a comic shop and has been involved in a graphic novel publishing house. She is an alumni of The Faber Academy writing school and now lives in the East End of London with her children.

OWN IT! will publish The Time Before The Time To Come in June 2018.