Lily Cooper, commissioning editor, bought UK and Commonwealth rights to End of Story from Emily Glenister at D H H Literary Agency. It will publish in hardback, e-book and audio in March 2023. "Louise Swanson", a pseudonym for Louise Beech, marks the beginning of a new direction for her as a high-concept thriller writer.
End of Story is set in a near future, where fiction has been banned and writing is a crime. Once a bestselling author, Fern is now a cleaner in a hospital. Yet despite increasingly sinister visits from government officials, Fern is scrawling her secrets in a notepad she hides under her bed—her work on a phone line, reading bedtime stories to children, a young boy she meets who feels familiar, objects that keep disappearing and reappearing in her house, the resistance network she is part of. But when she has spent her life writing fiction, can she be trusted to tell the whole truth?
Beech has published seven novels with Orenda Books. The Lion Tamer Who Lost (2018) was longlisted for the Polari Prize while Call Me Stargirl (2019) and The Mountain in My Shoe (2016) were both longlisted for the Guardian Not the Booker prize.
Beech said: “End of Story came from a unique and difficult place. I wrote it during the last lockdown, when writing was my saviour more than it ever had been before. It has been a rollercoaster ride. Emily Glenister and Lily Cooper just got the book and their support of and passion for it has been a joy.”
Cooper added: “Tense, imaginative and with a gasp-out-loud twist that will leave you dying to discuss with everyone around you, End of Story is fiction-writing at its most potent and thrilling. Louise is a unique talent and I am delighted to welcome her to Hodder in a deal that marks an exciting new chapter in her career.”
From The Bookseller article | Sian Bayley