Black & White Publishing has acquired world English rights to Cormac O'Keeffe's debut novel Black Water, due for publication as a paperback original in March 2018.
Black Water follows the fate of Jig, a young boy who is being groomed into gangland by crime boss Ghost, and the efforts of Jig's football coach Shay to save him.
Enter young detective Tara Crowe, who is determined to clean out the gangs that rule the D(ublin) Grand Canal neighbourhood in which the story takes place.
O’Keeffe is a journalist for the Irish Examiner, specialising in security, crime and drugs. He has lived in gangland communities near the Grand Canal in Dublin for many years.
"We were bowled over by Black Water," said Campbell Brown, managing Director of Black & White. "Not only does it have the great pace and characterisation that are the hallmarks of fantastic crime fiction, it also manages to be a gritty social commentary with aeons of humanity. We can’t wait to share it with readers next year."
"I wanted to drop readers into an authentic gangland community - one where they could taste the grit in their mouths," says O'Keeffe. "But, I wanted to do it through the human story of a boy, who is sucked into a crime gang, his football coach, who is struggling to save him, and a detective, who wants to bring the boy and his gang to justice.
"And I wanted to set this tale within a shady, and thrilling, police war on gangs. I am absolutely delighted Black and White decided to take my novel on and I am really excited to be working with them."