Knights Of scoops Sheppard’s ‘funny and heartwarming’ YA novel

Knights Of has acquired a new YA novel from Alexandra Sheppard, entitled Friendship Never Ends.

Editorial director Eishar Brar acquired world rights from Lauren Gardner at Bell Lomax Moreton. It will publish on 4th May in B-format paperback. Friendship Never Ends is the lead YA title from Knights Of for the year and will be supported by an extensive PR and marketing campaign including proof copies, events and a bookshop tour.

Described as “funny, heartwarming and full of relatable teenage angst”, Friendship Never Ends follows four best friends who realise they need to spend the summer growing up after a disastrous end-of-term party. 

The synopsis continues: “Up until now, Sunita, Dawn, May and Gifty have spent all their holidays since primary school together but the time apart forces them to learn about themselves and the personal pressures they’re facing as young teens from different cultural backgrounds.”

Sheppard’s debut YA novel, Oh My Gods (Scholastic), published in 2019. She had a story included in Happy Here, an anthology of 10 stories from Black British authors and illustrators published in 2021 by Knights Of.  

She said: “I’ve admired Knights Of from afar since they launched so I’m unbelievably excited to be writing my second YA novel with them. Writing Friendship Never Ends was an absolute joy and I couldn’t be happier it found a home with this brilliant team.”

Brar said that in the book, Sheppard had “perfectly captured the essential nature of teenage friendship in those years of, often uncertain, self-discovery”. Gardner said: “I am so excited for Alex to be working with the incredible team at Knights Of and for readers to have the summer of a lifetime with Friendship Never Ends.”

Article posted on The Bookseller, Jan 25, 2023.