Tom Wolfe, who has published all thirteen of his books since 1965 with Farrar, Straus & Giroux, is taking his business to Little, Brown for his upcoming novel, Back to Blood.
Why did Mr. Wolfe leave his home? According to FSG editor-in-chief Jonathan Galassi, it was a question only of money.
“We just couldn’t agree on the price for the project. That was the only thing,” Mr. Galassi said. “We love Tom. He’s a big part of the family here. It’s sad, but there are certain things that are just determining.”
Mr. Galassi said he read about 20 pages of Mr. Wolfe’s book when Lynn Nesbit–Mr. Wolfe’s longtime literary agent–submitted it to him in early December. Ms. Nesbit, who could not be reached for comment, took the book elsewhere when it became clear that an agreement with FSG would not be reached.
Mr. Wolfe’s editor at Little, Brown will be Pat Strachan, who worked with him on Bonfire of the Vanities and five other books while she was an editor at FSG during the 1970s and ’80s.
When Ms. Strachan left FSG in 1987 to become a fiction editor at The New Yorker in 1988, Mr. Wolfe started working with Mr. Galassi, who had been named editor-in-chief of the house earlier that year. Mr. Galassi worked with Mr. Wolfe on his last three books, starting with the 1998 novel A Man In Full.
Mr. Wolfe’s upcoming novel–slated for publication in 2009–will be set in Miami, according to a press release from Little, Brown, and will consider issues of “class, family, wealth, race, crime, sex, corruption, and ambition.”
The cast of characters, according to the release, includes “a young nurse of Cuban ancestry married to a famous French-émigré sex doctor, a freshman journalist on the trail of a Russian-mob-comes-to-Miami story, his wary editor, a second-generation Cuban police officer, a woman of Haitian background who passes for Anglo, and dozens more.”
Mr. Strachan, Ms. Nesbit, and Mr. Wolfe could not be reached for comment.