Harper Teen Pays Seven Figures for Debut YA Trilogy
Rachel Deahl — Publishers Weekly, 3/5/2010 9:44:42 AM
In a major pre-Bologna acquisition, Laura Arnold at Harper Teen pre-empted North American rights to a debut YA trilogy by Josephine Angelini. Mollie Glick at Foundry sold the series–the first book is called Starcrossed–and said she pitched it as “a Percy Jackson for teenage girls.” Foundry’s Stephanie Abou and Hannah Brown Gordon will be handling foreign rights at the Bologna Book Fair, and film rights are being handled by Angelini’s manager, Rachel Miller at Tom Sawyer Entertainment.
In Starcrossed, which brings Greek tragedy to high school, a shy Nantucket teenager named Helen Hamilton attempts to kill the most attractive boy on the island, Lucas Delos, in front of her entire class. The incident proves more than a bit inconvenient for Helen, who’s already concerned that she’s going insane–whenever she’s sees Lucas (or any of his family members) the image of three crying women appear to her.
The murder attempt does have an upside though, as it ultimately leads to Helen’s revelation that she and the local heartthrob are, in fact, playing out some version of a weighty ancient love affair. (Said female apparitions are, in fact, the Three Fates.) So Helen, like her namesake, Helen of Troy isn’t going crazy, she’s destined to start a Trojan War-like battle by being with Lucas. This then begs the unfortunate question: should she be with the boy she loves even if it means endangering the rest of the world?
The second book in the trilogy, Persephone’s Garden, follows Helen’s journey to the Underworld, and the third book, Ilium, chronicles the final battle between mortals and the gods. Harper Teen is planning to publish Starcrossed in summer 2011.