The epic new Contender series follows Cade, a misunderstood juvenile delinquent, and Harriet, a Victorian cat-burglar, who live in two different eras – until they’re both transported to another world.
Abandoned in a realm populated with lost remnants from the past, prehistoric animals and monstrous creatures, they are forced to become contenders in an endless, brutal tournament. It’s time to get ready for battle . . . because hiding is not an option.
UK and Commonwealth rights were acquired by Hodder Children’s Books from Juliet Mushens at Caskie Mushens Ltd in a three-book deal. The first in the series will publish in hardback in May 2019.
2018 is also set to be a busy year for the Summoner series, with Summoner: The Battlemage paperback, a World Book Day edition of Summoner: The Novice, and a new hardback prequel: Summoner: The Outcast, all coming this year. The Summoner series is also set to undergo a rejacket, starting with the new World Book Day cover look, followed by the rest of the series in January 2019. Hodder Children’s have also acquired The Summoner’s Handbook. Releasing in October 2018, the beautifully designed special edition handbook contains a bumper Demonology and an exclusive new story.
Naomi Greenwood, Senior Commissioning Editor at Hodder Children’s Books, says: ‘We are thrilled to announce new publishing with the uber-talented Taran who is an international star on the Hodder Children’s list. It is incredibly exciting and rewarding working with an author who can bring the most unique of worlds to life with such depth and imaginative scope. Fans can expect more of Taran’s trademark world-building and epic adventures in his new series, Contender, and The Summoner’s Handbook is an exciting opportunity to expand and explore the complex world of the Summoner series in a beautiful gift edition.’
Juliet Mushens says: ‘Taran’s epic world building and cool demons have gained him so many enthusiastic fans – I can’t wait to see what he’ll do with this new series.’
Taran Matharu says: ‘I am so pleased to publish the Contender series with the wonderful team over at Hodder Children’s. I originally wrote the first chapter of both Summoner and Contender in the same day, posting both simultaneously on Wattpad and continuing with whichever one got the most reads by the next day. Contender had 9 reads while Summoner had 11, so I continued on with Summoner. In hindsight, it was probably more to do with the covers I used than anything else, but it is safe to say that Contender has been jostling for attention in the back of my mind since the Summoner series first started. Pitched as Jurassic Park meets Avatar meets Gladiator, I sincerely hope that my readers will enjoy this new series as much as I am enjoying writing it.’
You can find out more about the World Book Day edition of Summoner: The Novice here.