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Hot Key Books acquires feel-good romcom by YA Book Prize shortlisted author Bethany Rutter 

Hot Key Books is thrilled to announce the acquisition of the feel-good body-positive rom-com Slowcoach, by YA Book Prize shortlisted author Bethany Rutter.

Jenny Jacoby at Hot Key Books acquired World all-language rights from Rachel Mann at Jo Unwin Literary Agency Ltd.   

Slowcoach tells the story of sixteen-year-old Ruby, who unexpectedly signs up to run in the Dawson Dash – a 5k race for sporty sixth formers – to prove her mean brother and even meaner PE teacher wrong about what a fat girl can do.                 

When Ruby starts to train, she doesn’t expect that she’ll need help – nor that she’ll find it in the cute boy who has just moved in next door. As the two jog through the long summer evenings in south London’s parks together, with Ollie only seeing her at her sweatiest and most vulnerable, the last thing she expects is that he might … like her. Or that she could allow herself to like him.

Bethany Rutter said:

“I’ve never enjoyed writing a book as much as I enjoyed writing Slowcoach, and I’m just so happy that I now get to share that joy with other people!”

Jenny Jacoby, editor at Hot Key Books comments: “I love Slowcoach for its summer fun and slow-burn romance, but also for how Ruby lets herself be vulnerable and challenge herself in both sport and crushes … It’s a gorgeous, fun read and will mean a lot to so many teens who might feel constrained by what people tell them they can and can’t do.”

Bethany Rutter is a writer and podcaster. Bethany was shortlisted for the 2021 YA Book Prize for her novel Melt My Heart (Macmillan Children’s Books) and in 2022 published her first adult novel, Welcome to Your Life (HarperCollins). She writes books about women, bodies and clothes. She lives in southeast London. @bethanyrutter

Slowcoach will be publishing in paperback in June 2024.