Tuesday, February 24, 2009

An Indication Of YA's Significance Now?

Condoleeza Rice has signed a contract with Crown Publishers to write three books. Two of them will be memoirs about her family--one written for adults and the other "a young adult edition."

I think this is impressive news--a former secretary of state writing (or having revised for her, who knows?) a YA version of her memoir. Crown must think it can sell it, meaning it thinks teenagers will read it. Or maybe just that libraries will buy it for their YA nonfiction collection, which is not quite the same thing.

The book isn't coming out until 2012. If it is well done and successful (or at least successful), could it end up being followed by other books by former government officials, politicians, financial leaders (if there are any anymore), etc.? I know there have always been kiddy bios of famous people, especially dead white guys and sports figures, but this seems different to me.


tanita✿davis said...

...I didn't see the details on that -- I just was wincing that she got a three-book deal to tell her life story. THREE books!? But a YA version. Huh. I think they figure they can sell it because she's an African American. Pardon my skepticism, but I can't imagine that anyone else who was the right arm of the past administration would get a three book deal out of Crown just now.

Gail Gauthier said...

The YA book is going to be connected to her memoir about her family. So I'm wondering, is there something really significant about her family that the publisher thinks will appeal to both adults and YAs? And how will the YA version be different?

I've read adult memoirs that I definitely think could have been reworked for a YA audience. I will be interested to see if that is really what happens here.

Sarah Rettger said...

I wonder if it's going to just be a reworking, like Mayflower and Three Cups of Tea and Marley and Me. No idea how sales have been, but getting multiple books out of one bestseller has apparently become a trend.