Weidenfeld & Nicolson and the Orion Publishing Group is delighted to announce a major deal to publish an exciting new book by the internationally bestselling, prize-winning author Simon Sebag Montefiore.

The deal for world rights to The World: A Biography marks a long and highly successful relationship between the Orion Publishing Group and Simon Sebag Montefiore. Bea Hemming, Commissioning Editor at Weidenfeld & Nicolson, bought world rights from Georgina Capel of Capel & Land.

Simon Sebag Montefiore says: 'I am absolutely delighted that Weidenfeld & Nicolson are to publish this book. I am especially thrilled because this is a very different sort of book from my early history books such as Catherine the Great and Potemkin and Young Stalin. But it is in some ways a natural follow-up to Jerusalem which Weidenfeld published so gracefully. Weidenfeld has published me for over ten years. Writing books is a bizarre adventure and I am so pleased we will continue this adventure together.'

Bea Hemming says: 'I know of no author better qualified to write what will become the classic history of the world for a whole new generation of readers. Simon will bring his characteristic flair, impeccable scholarship and psychological insight to bear on the whole of history of humanity, joining the dots across chronology and geography, and bringing the personalities that have animated world history vividly to life. In so many ways this is the book he has been building up to throughout his career, and I am absolutely thrilled to be involved in it.'

Simon Sebag Montefiore's book will be a fresh history of the world, told through biography, in a similar style of his most recent book Jerusalem: The Biography. It will be the story of humanity from prehistory to the present day, examining power, literature, war, art, science and daily life. Montefiore will weave a compelling narrative introducing the reader to the most obscure as well as the most famous characters in history. Neither an all-encompassing encyclopaedia nor a meticulous chronicle of names and dates, Simon Sebag Montefiore's book will glory in the exuberance, ingenuity, idiosyncrasy, cruelty and misery of human experience, the variety of character and of culture. It will examine how personality and circumstance have precipitated events and created our world. This is the fruit and culmination of Simon Sebag Montefiore's lifetime of the widest reading, travel and research. Like Jerusalem: The Biography, it will be enlivened by his unmatched flamboyant style and his vivid portraits of colourful characters. Above all, it will be written to be accessible and engaging to all.

Simon Sebag Montefiore's next two books will be published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson. He is currently writing The Romanovs due for publication in hardback in 2016 and in paperback 2017, to commemorate the centenary of the Russian Revolution. The World: A Biography will follow this.

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