Sarah Jessica Parker has selected the first in her new line of books for her partnership with the Hogarth imprint of Penguin Random House’s Crown Publishing Group, SJP for Hogarth. In a joint acquisition with Hogarth deputy publishing director Becky Hardie, the Divorce star preempted the acquisition of the rights to the debut novel of writer Fatima Farheen Mirza, according to a press release Monday.
The book, tentatively named A Place for Us, centers around an Indian Muslim family in California who is forced to reckon with the younger generation’s break from tradition, most notably their daughter’s wedding, “one of love, not tradition.” The book is set to be published in 2019.
Parker praises Mirza’s debut novel, saying, “It allows her reader to better understand what it means to reconcile one’s love of family and culture with a desire to find one’s own path and one’s own faith.” She adds, “Ms. Mirza painstakingly details the life of an Indian Muslim family in America and their children’s search to feel whole, fulfilled, and content.”
Mirza, a 26-year-old graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, says she started writing the novel when she was a freshman in college. “I was interested in exploring what it means when to be loyal to oneself is to betray the home you have come from,” she explains. “The bond between siblings as well as their betrayals.”
In other SJP-related book news, the American Library Association’s new Book Club Central announced Parker’s inaugural pick, No One Is Coming to Save Us, by Stephanie Powell Watts. The TV star-turned-book publisher serves as the ALA’s Honorary Chair, and revealed the selection at the organization’s annual conference in Chicago over the weekend. Parker will continue to pick books for the Club this year, with her next to be announced in the fall.
The novel complicates the American dream, telling a post-integrationist tale of African Americans and the disappointments they face in a North Carolina town. “No One Is Coming to Save Us marks the arrival of a wonderfully gifted new American writer,” Parker says. “I can’t wait to share their story, their search for fulfillment and attempts to better understand their past and shape their future, with readers everywhere, and I’m jealous of all who will open to page one for the first time.”