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Shonda Rhimes, Julia Quinn Team for ‘Bridgerton’ Prequel Book


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Author Julia Quinn and Shonda Rhimes are teaming for a Bridgerton prequel novel.

Avon Books, an imprint of the William Morrow Group at HarperCollins, has acquired North American rights to a collaborative novel written by Bridgerton author Quinn and Rhimes, who executive produces the Netflix original series, it was announced Thursday.

The novel will be based on Rhimes’ upcoming spinoff series that will chronicle the rise of Queen Charlotte and detail “how the young Queen’s marriage to King George sparked both a great love story and a societal shift, creating the world of the Ton inherited by the characters in Bridgerton.”

The book’s publication will be timed to the release of an eight-episode Netflix series — ordered to series last year — that will star India Amarteifio as the younger version of Charlotte. Golda Rosheuvel, who portrays Queen Charlotte on Bridgerton, will reprise her role in the prequel series. Bridgerton stars Adjoa Andoh and Ruth Gemmell will also reprise their roles as Lady Agatha Danbury and Lady Violet Bridgerton, respectively.

“Queen Charlotte has been such a moving character to write and now having the opportunity to work with Julia to adapt this story into a book is such an exciting opportunity,” Rhimes said in a statement. “I can’t wait for fans of this universe to read the story of a character that has resonated so deeply with our audience.””

Quinn added, “Taking Bridgerton from book to screen was fascinating for me to watch, and it’s such an exciting challenge for me to take it in the other direction, this time crafting Shonda’s brilliant vision into a novel. I’m especially thrilled to have the opportunity to write about Queen Charlotte, who was not in the original novels. Her character — and Golda Rosheuvel’s brilliant portrayal of her — was a tour de force, and I think readers will love getting a chance to know her more deeply.”

Lyssa Keusch, Quinn’s longtime editor at Avon Books/William Morrow, said: “Queen Charlotte is a relatively understated yet fascinating historical figure, and this new, rich, witty and compelling novel is perfect for the millions of fans of the Shondaland/Netflix series Bridgerton who are clamoring for more of this incomparable character.”

Following Bridgerton’s second-season premiere March 25, the series set a Netflix English-language series record for viewing time on its opening weekend.

The upcoming third season’s love story will focus on Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan) and Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton).

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