11:28am PT by Andy Lewis
'Sleeping Beauty'-Inspired YA Series Scores Two-Book Deal (Exclusive)
Spindle Fire, a YA fantasy series by Paper Lantern Lit co-founder Lexa Hillyer, inspired by Sleeping Beauty, was acquired by HarperCollins with a pre-empt offer in a two-book deal.
In a version of medieval France where magic is real, Princesses Isabelle and Aurora are half sisters, total opposites and best friends. When a drop of Aurora’s blood touched by faeries puts Isabelle in a deep sleep, Aurora embarks on a dangerous journey to find the prince whose kiss of true love will waken her sister (even though Aurora has been blind since the age of 2). At the same time, the sleeping Isabelle must save her dream realm from an evil faerie.
Fantasy re-imaginings of classic stories have proved popular with Hollywood. Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland reboot grossed over $1 billion. Maleficent (also inspired by Sleeping Beauty) grossed $758 million, and Snow White and Huntsman took in $396 million.
Lexa Hillyer is a co-founder of content generator Paper Lantern Lit (with Before I Fall writer Lauren Oliver) and the author of Proof of Forever. Warner Bros. optioned the Paper Lantern project Legacy of Kings (a re-imagining of the Alexander the Great legend) for television. In addition to Proof, Hillyer has written Acquainted With the Cold, which won the Melissa Gregory Poetry Prize.
Publication of the first book is scheduled for 2017. Spindle Fire was acquired for HarperCollins by Rosemary Brosnan, who has also edited Neil Gaiman. Stephen Barbara of Inkwell Management represented Hillyer on the book deal. UTA is handling film/TV rights.