Italian bestseller bought by Head of Zeus

Rights - International Thursday, 22 November 2018

Resto qui - I'm Staying Here - aquired after auction; 1930s story of resistance to fascism sold in UK and seven other territories

Head of Zeus has signed Italian best-seller Resto qui (I’m Staying Here) by Marco Balzano, with Neil Belton, editorial director, buying UK rights at auction in a 'nice' deal from Piergiorgio Nicolazzini at Piergiorgio Nicolazzini Literary Agency (PNLA).

Belton said: "This is a quietly beautiful novel that stays in the mind long after reading it, a novel about the dangers of ethnic nationalism, about war and resistance and above all about suffering and solitude in ordinary human lives.

"Set during the 1930s, in an Italian region torn between Mussolini’s Fascist regime and the sinister seduction of Nazism, Marco Balzano’s fiction reimagines these conflicts through the figure of a young mother whose family is nearly destroyed by the chaos of large historical forces and who is determined to stay in her home place and maintain decent human values."

According to a statement from PNLA: 'Resto qui is the touching story of an Italian village doomed to be submerged by a dam after WWII and the people who fought for years against war and devastation of their beloved land torn apart, the story of a family who lived without compromise, enduring loss and hardships, told by a strong, endearing voice to a distant and lost daughter.

'The story of Trina, the protagonist, becomes a lens through which filter history, a precious occasion to talk about current issues: violence against nature, denied rights, power, and impotence of the words.'

After being acquired by Einaudi in Italy in a 'hotly-contested' four-way auction, Resto qui has been sold in France (Philippe Rey), Germany (Diogenes), China (CITIC), the Netherlands (De Arbeidespers), Spain and Latina America (Duomo Ediciones), Lithuania (Almalittera) and Israel (Hakkibutz Hameuchad). Negotiations are also underway for film and TV rights.

Head of Zeus will publish Resto qui in Spring 2020.

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