Holly Ringland (Photo credit: Giulia Zonza).

Bruna Papandrea and Steve Hutensky’s Made Up Stories has acquired the rights to ‘The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart,’ the debut novel from Australian author Holly Ringland, with plans to turn the coming-of-age drama into a TV series.

Published by HarperCollins in March, the novel centres on a young girl whose violent childhood casts a dark shadow over her adult life. After a family tragedy, 9-year-old Alice Hart is taken in by her estranged grandmother, a flower farmer who raises her on the language of Australian native flowers as a way to express things that are too hard to speak.

The book will be published in the UK later this year, in the US next March and in numerous other markets. Papandrea will produce with Hutensky, Jodi Matterson and Casey Haver.

“Holly has created a distinctive and powerful novel that is a compelling tale of female resilience,” Papandrea said. “This story is told with authenticity, courage and love and we are thrilled to be bringing it to the screen.”

Matterson tells IF the producers are drawing up a list of potential writers and directors for a “high-end, limited series” which is very powerful and female-driven.

Among Made Up Stories’ recent Australian credits are Abe Forsythe’s Little Monsters and Jennifer Kent’s The Nightingale, the latter co-produced with Kristina Ceyton.

Its upcoming slate includes The Dry, Harry Cripps’ adaptation of the Jane Harper novel, a thriller about a cop who returns to his hometown after the apparent suicide of an old friend, to be directed by Rob Connolly.

On the novelist’s website she says she “grew up barefoot and wild in her mother’s tropical garden on the east coast of Australia. Her interest in cultures and stories was sparked by a two-year journey her family took in North America when she was nine years old, living in a camper van and travelling from one national park to another. In her twenties, Holly worked for four years in a remote Indigenous community in the central Australian desert.

“Moving to England in 2009, Holly obtained her MA in Creative Writing from the University of Manchester. Her essays and short fiction have been published in various anthologies and literary journals. She now lives between the UK and Australia. To any question ever asked of Holly about growing up, writing has always been the answer.”

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