Kevin Costner lands book deal, inevitable film

In a piece of news that we somehow missed in the whirlwind of prescient cats and Philip Roth-baiting that has been the past fortnight, none other than Kevin Costner has landed a deal with Simon & Schuster imprint Atria Books, and not for a cash-grab memoir either. Costner will ‘produce and develop’ the illustrated, serialised adventure novel The Explorers Guild, about the titular ‘clandestine group of adventurers who seek out the places where light gives way to shadow, and reason is usurped by myth’, so I dunno, maybe it does contain elements of memoir after all.

The actual writing of the books falls to author and art director Jon Baird, with illustrations by Rick Ross (not that one, terribly disappointingly). The first instalment of the series – The Explorers Guild Volume One: A Passage to Shambhala – is due for publication in 2014. Costner describes it as redolent of such adventure novels as Arabian Nights and Stephen Crane’s American civil war classic The Red Badge of Courage, taking place during the First World War as the guild searches for the eponymous mythic Buddhist city, encompassing the North Pole, Mongolian deserts and the Himalayas.

If you’re sitting there thinking ‘how very altruistic of Kevin Costner, to lend his name so selflessly to boost the work of an author he considers to be worthy of wider recognition’, then yes, that’s exactly right, except the complete opposite of that. The series of novels is merely the planned opening salvo in a full on multimedia assault, with Costner hoping the concept will spread to ‘multiple platforms, including a feature film that he will star in and produce.’ In other words, the world’s most elaborate retirement plan, which seems to be putting an awful lot of faith in the public responding well to this first book. If you’re now sitting there thinking ‘Kevin, stop trying to make fetch happen. It’s not going to happen’, well, you’re likely not alone.

Related Articles

Sign up to our Newsletter


* indicates required

BookMachine Ltd. will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing. Please let us know all the ways you would like to hear from us:

You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us, or by contacting us at We will treat your information with respect. For more information about our privacy practices please visit our website. By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp’s privacy practices.