When a comic book title gets adapted into another medium, it's usually as a movie or a television show. But in the case of Reborn, the new comic from author Mark Millar and artist Greg Capullo, the title is being adapted as a hardcover book.
Michael Joseph Publishing, a division of Penguin Random House, has picked up worldwide publishing rights to the comic, whose first issue hit shelves Wednesday, for a stand-alone fantasy novel that will be written by Sarah Lotz, the author behind supernatural thrillers The Three and Day Four.
The publisher is targeting an autumn 2017 release.
Reborn is a fantasy that has been described as having elements in the vein of The Lord of the Rings and Mad Max. The story centers on a widowed woman who, when she passes, wakes up in a magical realm where she has to fight to survive as she meets both good and bad people from her past.
The comic is already being rushed into a second print via Image Comics.
Millar's hope is that going the book route, via Lotz, will expand the comic beyond his and Capullo's base and reach a new global audience. He credited his wife with the idea, who remarked to him that the story is something she would have loved as a teen, but she'd never read comics.
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"She made the very interesting observation that, until we met, she literally never walked into a comic store or even the graphic novel section of the bookstore, and saw we were missing out on a potentially massive audience that wouldn't be competing with our comic sales," Millar, the writer behind Kick-Ass and Secret Service, both of which have been adapted into hit movies, told Heat Vision. "She's the brains of the Millar operation, and I have to say it was 100 percent her idea to approach Penguin with the idea of a very established YA author adapting this and really making it her own."
For Lotz, adapting the comic is a chance to work in a world established by two creators she admires.
"As a long-term fangirl of Mark and Greg's mind-bogglingly imaginative storytelling and artistry, getting the opportunity to be involved in one of their visions is like winning the writing lottery," Lotz said in a statement.
The deal was negotiated with Lucy Millar of Millarworld and literary agent Oli Munson at A.M. Heath.