Mantle unveils second novel and secures two more from award-winning author Kate Foster

Mantle have unveiled the second novel by Kate Foster after publishing her award-winning debut, The Maiden, in 2023. The King’s Witches, an unforgettable tale of witchcraft and intrigue, will be published in June 2024 and Mantle have secured a further two books from the author.

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Publishing Director, Madeleine O’Shea, bought UK and Commonwealth rights (excluding Canada) from Viola Hayden at Curtis Brown. Foster’s third novel, The Reawakening, is inspired by the true story of Maggie Dickson, who survived her own execution in 18th century Edinburgh and will be published in June 2025, with the fourth as-yet-untitled novel scheduled for 2026.

The King’s Witches is based on the betrothal of Princess Anna of Denmark to King James VI of Scotland. As a condition of their royal union, Anna will need to pass a trial period: one year of marriage in which she must prove herself worthy of being Scotland’s new queen. Anna resolves to be the perfect bride, until she meets Lord Henry . . .

Its synopsis continues: “By her side is Kirsten Sorenson, her loyal and pious lady-in-waiting. But, whilst tending to Anna’s every need, she has her own secret motives for wanting the royal marriage to be a success . . .

Meanwhile, in North Berwick, a young housemaid by the name of Jura is dreaming of a new life. But it isn’t long before she finds herself caught up in the witchcraft mania that has gripped not just the capital, but the new queen . . .”

O’Shea said: “I am thrilled to be publishing Kate’s brilliant second novel and to have secured two more of her beautifully realised historical page-turners for Mantle. The King’s Witches is just as powerful, absorbing and moreish as The Maiden. I can’t wait to see what Kate conjures up next”

Foster commented: “It has been a dream come true to find a home for my writing with Mantle, and their support and enthusiasm has been incredible. I am really excited to be continuing to do what I love most, which is re-imagining the lives of women of the past.”

Foster’s debut novel, The Maiden, also published by Mantle, won the Bloody Scotland Crime Debut of the Year Prize in 2023 and became a Times bestseller on publication.