Bookouture sign two-book deal with historical fiction author Helen Fripp

We are thrilled to announce that Commissioning Editor Ellen Gleeson acquired World English rights, plus audio, via Kiran Kataria of Keane Kataria Literary Agency. Book 1, entitled The Champagne Widow, will publish in March 2021 and tells the incredible true story of Veuve Clicquot, a young widow who single-handedly built a struggling vineyard into one of the world’s greatest champagne houses. A follow-up, to publish in 2022, will be set in 19th century Paris and revolves around a determined young woman from the slums becoming part of the beguiling world of the new Impressionist painters.

Ellen said,

The Champagne Widow whisked me away to the vineyards of post-Revolutionary France and immersed me completely in the romance, heartbreak, and passion of Madame Clicquot. It’s an extraordinary story, made all the more special that it’s based on a real, one-of-a-kind woman who blazed her own path in a man’s world. I know readers are going to fall just as hard as I have for Helen’s lyrical, beautiful and evocative writing and I am overjoyed that she’s joining Bookouture.’

Helen said,

‘I’ve never wanted to do anything but write, and I can’t believe that doing what I love is now official! It’s already been wonderful working with Bookouture – their editorial insight and marketing is impressive and I’m so looking forward to collaborating with them and connecting with readers. It feels like the end of a long, dusty road and the beginning of a flower-strewn boulevard strung with fairy lights.’

Kiran said,

‘Right from the opening scenes, I was completely captivated by Helen’s gorgeous, lyrical writing, the concept for the book, and the feisty, determined heroine she brought to life.  The story is one that, while very much rooted in its early 19th century setting, also has much to say to the modern reader. I am so delighted to have found such a wonderful home for Helen and her work, and I am very much looking forward to seeing Bookouture’s vision for her come to fruition.’

Please do join us over on our social media channels to celebrate the fabulous news! 

Bookouture re-sign contracts with Hewitt, Rix and Oaksmith

Debbie Rix author photo

We are delighted to announce that we have re-signed more contracts with some of your favourite women’s fiction authors.  

Associate Publisher Isobel Akenhead has acquired world rights in four more novels from bestselling author Kate Hewitt, including two modern women’s fiction novels, and two historical fiction novels – perfect for fans of Kristin Hannah and Jodi Picoult – for publication in 2021 and 2022.

Isobel says,

‘Working with Kate is an absolute dream. Her ability to get to the powerful emotional heart of a story – regardless of setting, or the challenges the characters are facing – is simply unparalleled. I can’t wait to publish these books.’

Kate says,

‘I am thrilled to continue to work with Isobel and all of the Bookouture team. Their commitment to their authors is second to none and I am so thankful to be part of the Bookouture family, and have the opportunity to bring more emotional stories to my readers.’

Associate Publisher Natasha Harding has acquired world all language rights, including audio, for two new historical novels from Debbie Rix.

Natasha says, 

‘I am just thrilled to have two more phenomenal titles on the way from Debbie! Her meticulous historical research and eye for a good story allow her to weave such sweeping and emotionally resonant novels about truly brave women living through extraordinary times. I can’t wait to get these books into the hands of her fans around the globe!’

Debbie says,

‘I joined Bookouture at the start of their journey and five years and six books  later I’m delighted to be signing for a further two novels.’

We are delighted to announce that Hannah Bond has acquired World rights for two further novels by women’s fiction author Ellyn Oaksmith.

The books will follow on from Summer at Orchard House and Promises at Indigo Bay in the Blue Hills series, both to publish in 2021.

Hannah says:

‘I could not be happier to have signed Ellyn for two more books. I fall more in love with her smart characters, sparky dialogue and gorgeous settings every time I dive into her novels, and it’s been a delight to see readers discover them too: they’re exactly the kind of warm, empathetic fiction we all need to read right now.’

Ellyn says,

‘I’m really excited to continue the Blue Hills series and adore working with Hannah Bond and the entire Bookouture team. Readers have been wonderful, sharing with me how much they love the Alvarez family and Summer at Orchard House. I can’t wait to bring readers book back to Blue Hills and share the loves, losses and adventures of this beloved family.’

We do hope you will join us on Facebook and Twitter to celebrate. 

Bookouture makes 3 new hires

Great news!

Bookouture is expanding its audio team with the appointment of Bonnier’s Alba Proko as audio manager, to head up the continued growth of their publishing in this area. Proko will start on 21 September and report to Publishing Director Ruth Tross.

As with the market generally, Bookouture has seen consistent double-digit growth in the audiobook market with a 25% revenue increase year on year in 2019. They plan an increased focus on audio sales and marketing, as well as commissioning titles and talent specifically for the audio market.

Ruth Tross said,

‘We’ve wanted to expand our audio publishing for some time, and I’m thrilled that Alba will be joining the team in September. She has the perfect background, with a huge understanding of the audio market and audio production process, as well as the insight and creative skills that will grow sales, bring new talent to our list, and create new opportunities for our authors. This will be an exciting new chapter for audio at Bookouture.’

Proko has been at Bonnier for five years, most recently as Product Manager for audio, ebook and apps, working on projects including Lily Allen’s My Thoughts Exactly and Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing. She said, “I’m absolutely thrilled to be joining the Bookouture team at such a pivotal moment in the audio market. I’ve long admired their dynamic publishing, and I’m looking forward to bringing their audio list to new heights.”

Bookouture has also made two further appointments, taking the total number of staff to thirty-eight people. Hamzah Hussain joins as Publishing Executive on 1 September, moving from Little, Brown, where he has been working as a Fresh Chapters trainee for the last nine months. And Saidah Graham will start as Contracts and Rights Executive on 7 September, moving from Bonnier, where she was Rights Assistant. 

Do join us on social media to celebrate. 

Bookouture sign new crime series from author Jenna Kernan

We are delighted to announce that we have signed a two-book deal with Publishers Weekly bestseller, two-time RITA nominee, and winner of the Book Buyers’ Best award, Jenna Kernan. Commissioning Editor Ellen Gleeson struck the deal for World English rights, plus audio, with Ann Leslie Tuttle at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret.

The first book, entitled A KILLER’S DAUGHTER and publishing in February 2021, will introduce readers to FBI forensic psychologist Nadine Finch, whose biggest fear is that her identity as the child of serial killer will be exposed. It will take all her unique knowledge of a serial killer’s mind to solve a new case which bears all the terrifying hallmarks of her mother’s crimes.

Ellen said,

As soon as I read the pitch for this incredible series I was hooked. Jenna weaves together all the elements of a successful crime thriller series with the utmost skill: fiendishly clever plotting; a flawed main character we can’t help but root for; an incredibly atmospheric setting of Florida’s Gulf Coast; and a healthy dollop of romantic tension. I can’t wait to share these incredible books with the world and I know that readers will love Dr Nadine Finch as much as I do. 

Jenna said,

‘I’m overjoyed to sign a two-book deal for my thriller series with Bookouture because I believe that Bookouture’s publishing model represents the future of the industry. Bringing this series to life is a dream and it is an absolute delight to work on the editorial process with Ellen Gleeson whose feedback has already enriched my books. My thanks to the entire Bookouture crew for their gracious welcome and the enthusiasm they bring to this. I couldn’t be more pleased to join their family and look forward to future collaborations with Bookouture!

Ann-Leslie said,

Jenna Kernan is a Publishers Weekly bestselling author who has written over thirty novels. I’m especially excited to see Jenna working with Ellen Gleeson to publish this new thriller series with Bookouture. The series draws on Jenna’s extensive knowledge of police procedure and is set on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Please do join us on social media to celebrate. 

Bookouture re-sign some of your favourite women’s fiction writers

We are super excited to share some wonderful news today, that we have re-signed contracts with some of your favourite women’s fiction authors.

Firstly, we’re delighted to be re-publishing Vanessa Carnevale’s first novel, The Florentine Bridge. Associate Publisher Lucy Dauman signed the deal for World rights (excluding Germany, Slovenia and Hungary) for The Florentine Bridge, which was previously published in Australia and New Zealand by HarperCollins Australia. Set on the sun-drenched streets of Florence, Vanessa’s highly praised debut is a heart-breaking story about a young woman finding her way back to herself, and maybe finding true love in the bargain.

Lucy says,

‘I am absolutely over the moon to be bringing this gorgeous story to an even wider audience. Vanessa is the queen of writing life-affirming, heart-wrenching page-turners, and I know readers everywhere will be as moved by Mia and Luca’s story as I was. Have the tissues at the ready!’

Vanessa says,

‘I love working with Lucy and the brilliant team at Bookouture and am thrilled that they will be re-publishing my debut novel The Florentine Bridge. It’s been a dream of mine to see this book reach a wider audience and I’m excited that readers worldwide will now have the chance to meet Mia and Luca, two characters that hold a very special place in my heart.’


In other awesome news, Commissioning Editor Jennifer Hunt has acquired world rights to two more novels from Kindle top 100 author Sam Vickery.

Jennifer says,

‘Sam makes you feel like you’re reading about your own friends and family, you care so deeply for them, and as her stories twist and turn, you can’t stop reading. When One Last Second stormed into the UK Kindle top 100 just a few days after publication I knew readers would be desperate for more of her books, and her new ideas are even more gripping and emotional.’

Sam says,

‘Working with Bookouture and my fantastically talented editor, Jennifer, has been such an incredible experience. When I was offered the chance to do it again, there was no question in my mind that it was the right decision for me. The entire team have been wonderful throughout every step of the process and I feel very lucky to be continuing my experience with Bookouture.’


And finally, we are delighted to be publishing two more novels from Kelly Heard. Commissioning Editor Cara Chimirri has acquired World All Language Rights, including audio, for both titles.

Kelly says,

From start to finish, releasing my debut and second novels with Bookouture has been an absolute delight. I could not be more pleased and excited to sign for two more books with this spectacularly talented team.’

Cara says,

‘I am so thrilled to have more phenomenal books on their way from Kelly. Her writing always gives us a truly captivating mystery that is explored with a dark, emotional intensity. These next two novels have an incredible atmospheric, gothic twist that really sets them apart. I can’t wait for readers to get their hands on them!’

Bord signs bestselling crime writer Anna-Lou Weatherley for three new novels

We are delighted to announce that Publisher Claire Bord has agreed a new deal for World English language rights for three new psychological thrillers from Darley Anderson at the Darley Anderson Literary, TV & Film Agency. Anna-Lou’s previous bestsellers with Bookouture include The Couple on Cedar Close and her latest release, The Stranger’s Wife which have each sold over 100,000 copies. The Stranger’s Wife remained in the Amazon Kindle UK top 100 for six months after publication.

Claire says:

‘I’m absolutely thrilled that we will be publishing a further three thrillers with Anna-Lou. She is such a talented writer who brings a distinctive edge to every one of her books. Her incredible reviews are a real testament to that.’

Anna-Lou says,

‘It’s just wonderful and incredible to be writing another three psychological thrillers with the brilliant team at Bookouture. I’m completely honoured to be working with such a great publisher and team of people, notably my fantastic editor Claire Bord – and also with the support of my wonderful agent, Darley Anderson. I’m extremely excited about the future and am looking forward to creating more unsettling, dark and hopefully heart-stopping (though not literally) thrillers for readers to enjoy.’ 

Darley Anderson commented,

‘No agent and no publisher could ask for a nicer person or a more talented professional to work with than Anna-Lou. Her highly successful partnership with Bookouture will continue to go from strength to strength with this new three book deal.’

Please do join in the celebrations over at Facebook and Twitter.

Sad News: Betty Rowlands, the ‘Queen of Cozy Crime’, passes

We are very sad to announce that our author Betty Rowlands died on 29 July, 2020, a few months before her ninety-seventh birthday. She passed away peacefully in the residential home that she called ‘home’. Referred to at Bookouture as the ‘Queen of Cozy Crime’, she was a runaway bestseller in 2018 and 2019.

Betty burst on to the crime scene in her mid-sixties by winning the Sunday Express / Veuve Clicquot Crime Short Story of the Year Competition in 1988, which shows that it is never too late to start writing. For many years, Betty lived in the heart of the Cotswolds, where her Melissa Craig mysteries are set, before moving to Bristol. She was first published in the 1990s by Hodder & Stoughton and Severn House, and then digitally by Orion’s Murder Room imprint, before Bookouture acquired her books as a backlist acquisition. With new titles and covers as well as a vigorous publication schedule, Bookouture were able to give her titles a fresh lease of life.

Publishing Betty has been an enormous delight for the whole team at Bookouture. Her editor Maisie Lawrence said,

‘When I visited Betty last year, she reminded me that the best books have, “a little bit of sex and not too much violence”. When I gently probed her about writing a couple more books, she looked me straight in the eye and said that sounded “a lot like hard work”. One of my favourite things about Betty is that for most of the last year, the only author she read was herself. She loved our new audio editions of her books and enjoyed getting to know her characters again. I wasn’t ready for our conversations to end and will miss her more than I can say.’

Betty’s twenty-five books and three boxsets have sold over 380,000 copies across all formats. All twelve books in her Melissa Craig Mystery series hit the UK Kindle top 100, and she is a top-five bestseller in Canada. Betty was very proud of her success and had all the residents and staff of her nursing home reading her books. Her many fans included Val McDermid who called her first novel, ‘full of sharp insights with an unexpected twist in the tail’. Betty was delighted that her books enjoyed a resurgence in popularity and loved reading letters from her many readers. She is survived by two of her three children, four grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Messages of condolence, memories to share and donations to Book Trust, Getting Children Reading can be sent c/o R Davies, 63 Westbury Hill, Westbury on Trym, Bristol BS9 3AD.

Bookouture sign three books from crime author Karen Long

We are delighted to share the news that we have signed three books in the Eleanor Raven series by crime author Karen Long. Commissioning Editor Emily Gowers signed the deal for world all language and audio rights with Araminta Whitley at the Soho Agency. The first book in the series, originally published as The Safe Word, introduces tough, driven DI Eleanor Raven as she hunts a serial killer through Toronto’s murky underbelly. Bookouture will publish in November 2020, with the title Cry for Mercy.

Emily said,

‘I am so excited to publish this series! Quite simply, Karen writes Astonishingly Great Books and she had me gripped from the start with the uncompromising DI Eleanor Raven. The hooky plots, tense drama and magnetic chemistry between Eleanor and the rest of her team had me turning pages like mad, and I cannot wait for more readers to experience this as well!’

Karen said,

I’m thrilled to have been so warmly accepted into the Bookouture family. This is a great opportunity for me to work with driven and successful publishers and to expand my horizons. Looking forward to meeting new readers and challenges.’

Please join us on Facebook and Twitter to celebrate.


Bookouture sign two trilogies from the estate of beloved author Celeste De Blasis

We are thrilled to announce that Commissioning Editor Emily Gowers has acquired from Christina Hogrebe at Jane Rotrosen Agency world all language and film and TV rights for two trilogies from the estate of beloved author Celeste De Blasis. As part of the deal, we will be bringing the much-loved Wild Swan trilogy to ebook for the first time, as well as a previously unpublished trilogy written by Celeste before her death.

Set around the American War of Independence, the America’s Daughter trilogy features Celeste’s trademark sweeping historical romance as well as cameos from Hamilton and Washington. The novels will be published throughout Winter 2020 to Summer 2021. Audio rights are managed by Sabrina Prestia at Jane Rotrosen.

Emily said,

I discovered Celeste’s work last year when on the eternal search for my next epic historical romance fix and all I can say is, Outlander, move over! I am amazed that Celeste’s fans have had to rely on second-hand copies until now, and with the support of her estate and Christina, I am so excited to bringing these incredible novels back to the light!’

Celeste’s family and friends said,

‘Celeste De Blasis’s family and friends are humbled and awed by Bookouture’s commitment to republish Celeste’s beloved and timeless Wild Swan trilogy. Beyond that, it’s the thrill of a lifetime to be part of the process of publishing for the first time ever Celeste’s last monumental work, America’s Daughter. We are looking forward to a new generation becoming as enthralled as we are with Celeste’s stories of smart, powerful women in challenging times.’

Please do join us over on Facebook and Twitter to celebrate.