COVER REVEAL! WE HAVE ALWAYS BEEN HERE by Samra Habib

We are so proud to reveal the cover of Samra Habib’s queer muslim memoir! Read the full description from Viking Canada below.

How do you find yourself when the world tells you that you don’t exist?

Samra Habib has spent most of her life searching for the safety to be herself. As an Ahmadi Muslim growing up in Pakistan, she faced regular threats from Islamic extremists who believed the small, dynamic sect to be blasphemous. From her parents, she internalized the lesson that revealing her identity could put her in grave danger.

When her family came to Canada as refugees, Samra encountered a whole new host of challenges: bullies, racism, the threat of poverty, and an arranged marriage. Backed into a corner, her need for a safe space — in which to grow and nurture her creative, feminist spirit — became dire. The men in her life wanted to police her, the women in her life had only shown her the example of pious obedience, and her body was a problem to be solved.

So begins an exploration of faith, art, love, and queer sexuality, a journey that takes her to the far reaches of the globe to uncover a truth that was within her all along. A triumphant memoir of forgiveness and family, both chosen and not, We Have Always Been Here is a rallying cry for anyone who has ever felt out of place and a testament to the power of fearlessly inhabiting one’s truest self.

DEAL NEWS: HARPERCOLLINS ACQUIRES SAMRA ZAFAR’S A GOOD WIFE

We are so pleased to share this fantastic announcement! Kate Cassaday, executive editor at HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, has acquired ­­­English-language rights in Canada to a memoir by international speaker and human rights activist Samra Zafar. Zafar’s book, A Good Wife, will be published in spring 2019. Samra Zafar’s book deal was brokered by Samantha Haywood, literary agent and president of Transatlantic Agency, and Stephanie Sinclair, senior agent. Cassaday said of the acquisition, “From the first moment I met Samra, I knew that I wanted to share her powerful story. Every page of this important memoir is guided by Samra’s strength and humanity.”

At fifteen, Samra Zafar had big dreams. She was going to go to university and forge her own path. Then, with almost no warning, those dreams were snatched away from her. She was suddenly married to a stranger at seventeen and had to leave behind her family in Pakistan to move to Canada. Her new husband and his family promised that the marriage and the move would be a fulfillment of her dreams, not a betrayal of them. But as the walls of their home slowly became a prison, Samra realized the promises were empty ones.

Desperate to get out and refusing to give up, Samra hatched an escape plan for herself and her two daughters. Somehow, she found the strength not only to build a new future but to walk away from her past, ignoring the pleas of her family and risking cultural isolation by divorcing her husband.

A Good Wife tells the harrowing and inspiring story of a young girl with big dreams, becoming a woman who has found strength in the face of oppression and battled through to empowerment. Samra said of the decision to share her story, “I decided to speak up because I knew my story is not just mine. I hope that by raising my voice, I will help others find their voices. I’m grateful to the wonderful team at Transatlantic Agency and HarperCollins for making that happen!”

Samra’s personal essay on her marriage, published in Toronto Life magazine, went viral in 2017, and her piece on Yahoo! News has been viewed more than 12 million times worldwide. She is an international speaker, social entrepreneur, scholar, author, and human rights activist, connecting with people around the world and empowering others through her advocacy and non-profit work. She also serves as a governor for the University of Toronto. Samra’s free time is dedicated to her two beautiful daughters.

(Full press release.)

Praise for HOME ICE by Angie Abdou

The praise is piling as high as autumn leaves for Angie Abdou’s HOME ICE (ECW Press).

HOME ICE chronicles and illuminates a full season in the life of a hockey parent, offering a nuanced and unflinching self-portrait of a mother dedicated to supporting her son’s passion for amateur hockey but struggling with ambivalence over our society’s often troubling sport culture and its impact on her family.

Here’s what everyone is saying about HOME ICE:

“The author brings a novelist’s eye to the story, telling it in first-person present tense; with its sharp characterizations and dialogue in place of autobiographical exposition, the book is a first-rate memoir and a fine example of narrative nonfiction. It’s also a must-read for parents with youngsters who play organized sports.” –Booklist, starred review

“This is a lively, honestly written account of parenting that will resonate with readers who are fully involved in their children’s sports.” –Publishers Weekly

“Home Ice is page-turning and compelling in a whole different way. It’s about Abdou, her family, her relationships with her husband and two children, and her role as a parent; or, as Abdou said, consider it a ‘voyeuristic peek into the writer’s life.’” –Society for International Hockey Research

“You don’t get to pick your kids’ marriages or their sports, and he wants to play hockey.” – CBC Radio Sunday Edition

“It’s a unflinching and revealing account of the toll sports (especially hockey) can take on family dynamics and fortunes.” – CBC Radio Daybreak Alberta (19 min audio clip)

CTV’s The Social (11 min video clip)

“As much as Home Ice skewers Canadian hockey for its escalating costs and obsession with competitiveness, that criticism is balanced by an athlete’s appreciation for the heady benefits of training hard and excelling in a sport.” –Active For Life

“[T]his is a memoir told with humility, and throughout the book, Abdou lets her happy and sensitive son shine through. We see his sense of fairness and justice, his quirky stick-handling, his love for the rowdy speed and sweaty camaraderie of the sport.” –

University of Texas Arlington Sports Literature Association

“…she leaves the reader with as much knowledge and information on both sides of the coin to allow the reader to make a decision on the game’s safety rather than her imposing her decision onto the reader. One gets a sense that Miss Abdou did this with intent, and I feel it really opens the door to thoughtful and intelligent debate…” –Hockey Blog In Canada

About the Author:

Angie Abdou has published four books, including three novels: The Bone Cage (a CBC Canada Reads finalist in 2011), The Canterbury Trail (a Banff Mountain Book finalist in 2011) and Between (2014, Arsenal Press). Angie is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Athabasca University. Her nonfiction has appeared in various magazines and newspapers, including National Post and Elle Magazine. Her novel IN CASE I GO launched with Arsenal Pulp Press Fall 2017.

Welcoming Moira Welsh to Transatlantic!

We’re delighted to welcome Moira Welsh to Transatlantic Agency!

Moira has been a journalist with The Toronto Star for 25 years. During that time she has covered news, the environment and social justice and, as an investigative reporter, has long had an interest in issues related to people living in long term care and retirement homes. Moira has co-authored investigations that have won three National Newspaper Awards and a Michener Award for Public Service Journalism. She lives in Toronto with her family.

Moira is represented by Samantha Haywood.

Photo Credit: Toronto Star

DEAL NEWS x 2: Shani Mootoo’s CEREUS BLOOMS AT NIGHT and POLAR VORTEX

Double the deal news for author Shani Mootoo!

Film/TV rights to Shani Mootoo’s haunting debut CEREUS BLOOMS AT NIGHT, now a contemporary classic and past finalist for the Giller Prize, the Chapters/Books in Canada First Novel Award, and the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize, an exquisite cross-generational history filled with thrilling passion and alluring mystery, set in the fictional Caribbean town of Paradise, and unveils the mystery surrounding Mala Ramchandin, an aging, notoriously supposedly crazy woman suspected of murdering her father, optioned by Aaron Barnett at Bitter Boy Productions in a deal by Samantha Haywood.

Canadian English rights to one of Canada’s most widely acclaimed literary fiction authors, Shani Mootoo’s POLAR VORTEX, a seductive and tension-filled new novel about a lesbian couple receiving an unexpected visit from an old male friend that throws questions of true intentions into the mix of their previously monogamous commitment, told with a Mrs. Dalloway stream-of-consciousness narration, for readers of Herman Koch and Rachel Cusk, sold to Jay and Hazel Millar at Book*hug Press for publication in early 2020 in a deal by Samantha Haywood.

Welcoming Sam Shelstad to Transatlantic!

An excited Transatlantic welcome to author Sam Shelstad!
 
Sam was longlisted for the 2014 CBC Short Story Prize and was a runner up for the 2014 Thomas Morton Memorial Prize. He regularly contributes to McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, and has been published in many literary magazines, including The New Quarterly, The Fiddlehead, and Joyland. His debut story collection, COP HOUSE (Nightwood Editions, 2017), was compared to the work of George Saunders in Quill and Quire, where they remarked, “it is precisely this blend of humour and pathos that give Shelstad’s stories their disarming power.” Sam lives in Toronto, Ontario.
 
Sam is represented by Samantha Haywood.

DEAL NEWS: ADVENTURES IN SOLITUDE II by Grant Lawrence

World rights to Grant Lawrence‘s ADVENTURES IN SOLITUDE II, a follow up to the perennial bestseller ADVENTURES IN SOLITUDE, interweaving the fascinating history of the Desolation Sound, B.C. area with his own experiences and further exciting anecdotes featuring the colourful characters of the area, including the inimitable Cougar Lady, the phantom-like Spaghetti Bandit, and the doomed Mack the Knife. As well, Lawrence explores the generational shift of becoming a father and dragging his own young family to the cabin, sold to Anna Comfort O’Keeffe at Harbour Publishing in a deal by Samantha Haywood.

Dr. Lee Airton’s GENDER: YOUR GUIDE one-week round up

We’re proud to see Dr. Lee Airton‘s GENDER: Your Guide stimulating important discussions on programs across Canada and the US just a week post publication.

Publisher Simon & Schuster calls this book “An authentic and accessible guide to understanding—and engaging in—today’s gender conversation.”

The Globe and Mail‘s Harvey Schachter says, “Airton offers a warm, inviting guide to a complicated area, and discusses their own transition in university from female to non-binary.”

Click on links below for informative interviews with Dr. Lee Airton:

TV
CTV’s Your Morning
Ctv.ca/YourMorning//What-to-say-and-what-to-do-in-the-new-gender-culture

RADIO
KGO 810’s The Chip Franklin Show
Omny.fm/shows/the-chip-franklin-show/october-22-2018-trump-goes-after-trans

Dr. Lee Airton is an Assistant Professor of Gender and Sexuality Studies in Education at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. As a researcher, blogger, advocate and speaker, Dr. Airton focuses on enabling individuals and institutions to welcome gender and sexual diversity in everyday life. Dr. Airton founded They Is My Pronoun, a Q+A-based blog about gender-neutral pronoun usage and user support. Dr. Airton is also the founder of the No Big Deal Campaign, a social media initiative that helps people show support for transgender peoples’ right to have their pronouns used. In recognition of their pronoun advocacy, Dr. Airton received a 2017 Youth Role Model of the Year Award from the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity. Dr. Airton’s scholarly work has appeared in the journals Sex Education, Curriculum Inquiry, and Teachers College Record. Learn more at LeeAirton.com and genderyourguide.com.

DEAL NEWS: Jason McBride’s KATHY ACKER

World rights to Jason McBride‘s biography on leading post-modern provocateur Kathy Acker, KATHY ACKER: Her Revolutionary Life and Work, drawing on unprecedented access to her personal papers, manuscripts and letters, as well as extensive, exclusive interviews with Acker’s family, friends, lovers and rivals, and chronicling a life of uncommon drama and cultural excitement, sold to Ira Silverberg at Simon & Schuster in a deal by Samantha Haywood.

DEAL NEWS FOR SUSAN SWAN’S THE BIGGEST MODERN WOMAN OF THE WORLD AND THE DEAD CELEBRITIES CLUB

We have incredible news to share – Temple Street, a division of Boat Rocker Studios and producers of Orphan Black, have secured television rights to multiple prize finalist and internationally bestselling author Susan Swan‘s debut novel, THE BIGGEST MODERN WOMAN OF THE WORLD!! The deal was arranged by Samantha Haywood, full press release below.

Plus this great news too (!!) Swan’s newest novel, THE DEAD CELEBRITIES CLUB, a timely and satirical novel featuring the hedge fund whale, Dale Paul, a witty, self-absorbed rogue and raconteur for fans of The Wolf of Wall Street and The Sellout by Paul Beatty, will be published by Cormorant Books in 2019, world ex: Canada rights now available. Contact: samantha@transatlanticagency.com.

Press release continued:

Originally published in 1983, and now a contemporary classic, THE BIGGEST MODERN WOMAN OF THE WORLD tells the extraordinary true story of a seven-foot-six giantess who exhibited with P.T. Barnum, and will be adapted for television by Hannah Moscovitch, one of Canada’s leading writers.

Susan Swan’s critically acclaimed fiction has been published in 15 countries, translated into eight languages and received multiple prize nominations. Her novels include What Casanova Told Me, The Western Light and The Wives of Bath, a bestseller that was adapted as the film Lost And Delirious.

Hannah Moscovitch is an award winning playwright, radio, film and television dramatist who has risen to international prominence with works such as This is War, The Russian Play and East of Berlin, and television dramas XCompany and Played.

Kerry Appleyard, SVP Temple Street, said: “Susan Swan’s wonderful novel examines Western culture’s obsession with size and abnormality as Anna’s astonishing life unfolds. Ultimately it is an unlikely story of triumph over adversity which will resonate deeply with audiences worldwide. We’re delighted that we have one of the strongest voices in Canada, the multiple award-winning Hannah Moscovitch, to adapt the series.”

Susan Swan said: “This novel is very close to my heart and I’m thrilled that the television series will be created by Temple Street and Hannah. It’s the ideal dream team to bring Anna Swan’s incredible true story to life!”

Executive Producer Hannah Moscovitch said: “I am beyond thrilled to be working with the award-winning team at Temple Street, to bring Susan Swan’s novel about the extraordinary Anna to our screens. Part truth, part legend, The Biggest Modern Woman of the World is a saucy romp through traditional categories of gender, sexuality and nationality and working on it is going to be a huge pleasure. ”

Co-chairmen Boat Rocker Media David Fortier and Ivan Schneeberg will executive produce the television series based on The Biggest Modern Woman of the World by Susan Swan, along with Trish Williams (Killjoys, Saving Hope). Creator Hannah Moscovitch is also executive producer.

Temple Street is the premium scripted division of Boat Rocker Studios and produces a wide range of content including prime-time television dramas and comedies. Since 2005, Temple Street has been recognized with more than 120 awards and nominations, earning a global reputation for the quality of its programming. A selection of our productions include Orphan Black (BBC America, Space), Killjoys (Syfy, Space), X Company (CBC, Ovation), Being Erica (CBC, SOAPnet), Billable Hours (Global, Showcase), and Queer as Folk (Showtime, Showcase).