Coming in 2022 and 2023
July, 2021. Penny Haw’s debut historical fiction, ALEEN will be published in 2022 as part of a two-book deal with Sourcebooks, which, located in Naperville, Illinois, is one of the 20 largest publishers in the United States.
ALEEN is based on the true story of English aristocrat, Aleen Cust who defied society, fought patriarchy and was renounced by her family—who had close ties to Queen Victoria—to train as Britain’s first woman veterinary surgeon in 1900. Worldwide rights for ALEEN and a second work of historical fiction by Haw (for publication in 2023) were acquired by Sourcebooks’ Associate Editor, Erin McClary from Jill Marsal of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.
The Wilderness is closer than you think
June 8, 2021. Eight friends set off on a six-day hike, which they’ve dreamed of doing for years. The trail traverses a magnificent but remote part of South Africa, where the trees are tall, the undergrowth dense, the mountains high and the animals as intriguing as they are elusive. What could go wrong? Who will snap and who will come to the rescue?
Wilderness is whisperer in novel set in South Africa
March 31, 2021. South African journalist and author, Penny Haw’s debut fiction, THE WILDERNESS BETWEEN US will be published as part of a traditional deal with US publisher, Köehler Books on July 31, 2021.
Haw’s first book, a children’s chapter book called NICKO, was published by Penguin Random House South Africa to high acclaim in 2017, was reprinted in 2018 and is now included in middle-grade school curricula. It also heralded the writer’s transition from journalist to novelist, with her focus now on literary fiction.
In THE WILDERNESS BETWEEN US, Faye and her friends’ anorexic daughter, Clare are thrown together after a flood separates them from their group during a hike in a remote, mountainous region of South Africa. When Clare is critically injured, Faye takes control, builds a shelter and nurses the younger woman. Her resilience and resourcefulness prove to Faye that she is not the fearful, helpless person her husband has long insisted she is. As they battle the elements and Clare’s failing health, the women discover they share a demon; shame. Their new friendship and growing appreciation of the wilderness take Faye and Clare on an unexpected journey of recovery and self-discovery—but not everyone survives.
THE WILDERNESS BETWEEN US is a portrait of two broken women who reclaim their independence and strength as they fight for survival—and renewal. It is a vivid, moving story about family, friendship and adventure, which reveals the effects of gaslighting and anorexia, the associated shame and the healing power of nature and compassion.
In describing the work, literary acquisitions editor at Köehler Books, Greg Fields said, “Penny has created something that is, in my reading of it, immensely powerful. The themes cross several layers, including the intricacies of relationships, manipulation and control, the evolution of personal self-esteem and the inestimable power of human resiliency. All of this is carried by a narrative that is at times gripping and consistently well-structured and clear.”
Fields is the author of ARC OF THE COMET and THROUGH THE WATERS AND THE WILD, both of which have nominated for several literary awards. Most recently, THROUGH THE WATERS AND THE WILD was nominated for the international 2021 Rubery Book Award.
THE WILDERNESS BETWEEN US will be available internationally in hard cover, paperback and e-book format from July 31, 2021.
Nicko back in print
December 2020. Good news! After being out of print for a few months, Nicko, The Tale of a Vervet Monkey is once again available in print in South Africa.
For more information and to order copies, email NickoMonkey (at sign) mweb (dot) co (dot) za. The book is also available internationally in Kindle/ebook format here.