Christine Pillainayagam’s Ellie Pillai Is Brown has been shortlisted for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize. One of the six shortlisted books for Older Readers, her YA romcom is about standing out, falling in love and following your heart. Hilarious and heart-warming, Ellie Pillai Is Brown was longlisted for the Branford Boase and Amazing Book Awards, and was one of the Observer’s YA Books of the Year.

Publishing with Faber in March 2023, the sequel, Ellie Pillai is (Almost) in Love, finds the inimitable titular heroine in the midst of a heavy summer romance which does not quite go as planned.

Congratulations Christine!

We have just closed a US auction for Colombe Schneck’s The Paris Trilogy (formerly titled Swimming in French) with Penguin Press. Dutch rights were pre-empted by Atlas-Contact in Holland. From Deborah Levy: “This is valuable writing. It has immense vitality… a deep study of existence.”

The Paris Trilogy consists of three semi-autobiographical takes on a woman’s life. Exploring questions of sexuality, bodily autonomy, femininity, friendship and loss, The Paris Trilogy is a moving meditation on a lifelong journey to reclaim the female body.

After a Brazilian preempt from Intrinseca, and rights going to Spectrum in the Netherlands, Carole Tonkinson at Bluebird won the heated 7-way UK auction this week for Melody Beattie’s updated and revised Codependent No More. With brand new chapters and updated language throughout, the new edition, represented on behalf of Spiegel & Grau, makes the groundbreaking self-help classic even more relevant than it was when it first entered the conversation over 35 years ago.

Debut novelist Lucille Abendanon’s middle-grade story, The Songbird and the Rambutan Tree, is set to be published in North America by Meg Gaertner at Jolly Fish Press, for publication in spring 2024.

Inspired by a lifetime of conversations between Lucille and her Oma, Emmy, who was a prisoner of war in Tjideng during WW2, The Songbird and the Rambutan Tree is a heart-breaking historical middle grade debut. Inspired by the author’s grandmother’s true survival story during the second World War in the Dutch East Indies, it contains themes of identity, belonging, and making your home in a country you weren’t necessarily born in.

We are delighted to announce that Susanna Lea Associates will be handling the rights for New River, a new non-fiction publisher launched by Aurea Carpenter and Rebecca Nicholson, the team behind Short Books. New River will focus on mental and physical health, self-development and social science.

New River will launch next May with a new title by Jessie Inchauspé. Sold into 39 languages, her first book Glucose Revolution, published by Short Books in March 2022, shot straight in at number one in non-fiction and has remained in the Amazon bestseller list ever since.

On behalf of The Robbins Office, we are proud to be representing the highly anticipated next book from David Grann, New York Times bestselling author of Killers of the Flower Moon. The Wager is a narrative of survival which tells the 18th century story of a shipwreck, a mutiny, and a trial full of twists and turns.

Knopf/Doubelday will publish in the US in Spring 2023 and rights have already sold in UK (Simon & Schuster), Brazil (Companhia das Letras), France (Editions du sous sol), Holland (Q), and Romania (Editura ART).

Martin Scorsese and Leonardo di Caprio will team up with Apple TV to bring the book to the screen.

Take My Hand by Dolen Perkins-Valdez will feature as one of twelve titles on the fifth season of BBC 2’s flagship literary programme. Airing in November, the shows features a group of four famous guests, who discuss a newly published book and a book of their choice.

Take My Hand is published in the UK (Phoenix), US (Berkley), France (Le Seuil), and rights have also sold in Russia and Croatia.

Following the publication of How to Speak Whale in the UK (William Collins) and the USA (Grand Central) , Tom Mustill’s book on animal communication has received glowing reviews from publications and readers. And was picked as one of The New Yorker‘s Books of 2022.

How to Speak Whale is a thrilling investigation into the pioneering world of animal communication, where big date and artificial intelligence are changing our relationship with animals forever.

The book was featured in The Observer Magazine in the UK, and it has been reviewed by Geographical Mag and Oprah Daily in the US.

Rights for Mustill’s book are also sold in Finland (Aula & Co), France (Albin Michel), Germany (Rowohlt), Italy (Il Saggiatore), Japan (Kashiwa Shobo), and Sweden (Modernista).

Pre-empts have been accepted and auctions carried out in 20 languages in just 2 weeks for Shelley Read’s spellbinding debut Go as a River.

Go as a River is a story of loss but also of home, family, love, and resilience—and of finding them where least expected. It is both a beautiful evocation of young love and a stunning exploration of our connection to nature.

Foreign rights to this title are represented by SLA on behalf of Spiegel & Grau, whose previous successes include Catherine Raven’s Fox and I, a New York Times bestseller and winner of the PEN/E.O. Wilson award.

Go as a River will be Spiegel & Grau’s lead March 2023 title. A list of publishers is available on the title page.

Tom Mustill’s How to Speak Whale – a thought-provoking and lively investigation into whale science and animal communication – has been getting fantastic early blurbs from George Monbiot, Sy Montgomery, and Greta Thunberg:

“We rarely pause to consider what animals think or feel, or question whether their inner lives resemble our own. Tom Mustill’s fascinating and deeply humane book shows us why we must do so – and what we, and the planet, could stand to gain by it.” — Greta Thunberg

Mustill’s debut is out in September 2022 with William Collins in the UK and Grand Central in the US, with rights also sold in Finland (Aula & Co), France (Albin Michel), Germany (Rowohlt), Japan (Kashiwa Shobo), and Sweden (Modernista).