DreamWorks Acquires YA Novel Shadow and Bone

The ramp-up of studios gambling on up-and-coming young adult sci-fi/fantasy novels post-The Hunger Games has shown no signs of slowing down. DreamWorks has just announced it has purchased the film rights to first-time writer Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone.

David Heyman, who produced the Harry Potter series, will bring this one to life with Jeffrey Clifford (Up in the Air). So as far as YA adaptations go, Bardugo’s tale is in good hands.

Released in June, Shadow and Bone is the first of three planned novels (of course) in the Grisha Trilogy. It centers on a young heroine who must use a newly discovered power to help save her nation from a swarming darkness filled with monsters.

Here’s the official summary from Amazon, which awarded the novel a Best Book of the Month Pick in June for both children and adults, a distinction that had never previously been given:

“Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart.”

Another day, another YA book gets picked up by a major studio, you might say. That may be true, but so far the book has been selling consistently and publisher Macmillan plans to roll it out internationally.

If it continues its upward trend, it could deliver better-than-expected results when and if it finally hits the big screen.