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International deals for novel about virus that only attacks men

by | Aug 9, 2020 | News

HarperCollins UK’s Borough Press imprint is enjoying considerable international interest in a daring work of near future fiction by young London lawyer and freelance journalist Christina Sweeney-Baird.

In The End of Men, Sweeney Bair imagines a world in which 90% of the male population has died from a gender-specific virus.  The synopsis says: “Deftly reimagining our world through a female lens, Christina explores the impact of the end of men on fertility, governance, politics, technology and more. Her careful and poignant portraits of love and relationships bind the science of this novel into something utterly human, which leaves a lasting impact on the reader.”

Carla Josephson, senior commissioning editor at Borough Press, acquired UK and Commonwealth rights, excluding Canada, in a “significant” six-figure deal from Felicity Blunt at Curtis Brown.  Rights have now sold in 15 territories, including to Mark Tavani at Putnam in the US.  The book will be published in hardback in 2021.

Sweeney-Baird is a freelance journalist who has written for the Independent and the Huffington Post.  She works as a corporate litigation lawyer in London and says: “I began The End of Men in 2018, and whilst writing I hoped I would find a publisher who would be as passionate about the book as I am. It’s an extraordinary coincidence that I found this passion in Carla and the team at Borough Press, just weeks before we saw the rapid spread of coronavirus across the world. I’m beyond grateful to my agent Felicity who has worked so hard to shape the book and make all of this happen – it’s a total dream to be joining Borough.”

Blunt said: “Christina is a writer of extraordinary imagination, humour and verve.  The End of Men is a nuanced and vividly realised portrait of love and the human spirit. Borough is the perfect home both for this book and whatever she writes next.”

Josephson added: “The End of Men combines a hugely poignant and compelling story that is impossible to put down, with an insightful examination of gender politics and the result is an absolute bombshell. Christina is an exceptionally talented writer, and Borough Press is passionate about supporting debut authors and launching their writing careers.”

 

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