Law & Order creator/exec producer Dick Wolf has made a deal to write two novels for the Harper Collins imprint William Morrow, in a deal the publisher is announcing today. Though Wolf’s latest Law & Order is being transplanted to Los Angeles, he’s using his old stomping NYC grounds for the first book. Though as a New Yorker, I’m not thrilled the plot revolves around a terror scare in Gotham. The novel’s an untitled suspense thriller about a major terrorist attack planned for New York City during the July 4 weekend. The Joint Terrorism Task Force and an NYPD detective is the only hope to thwart the attack in a thriller in the tradition of The Day of the Jackal and Three Days of the Condor. The deal was made by Morrow exec editor David Highfill, who got the book exclusively from 3 Arts’ Richard Abate and UTA, where Peter Benedek has long repped him.
“As he has shown us in the authenticity and freshness of his TV work, Dick Wolf is a master of tightly woven, character-driven American stories that feel like they are happening right in front of you, right now, not last week of last year,” Highfill said in a statement. “He will bring just that sense of heightened immediacy and drama to this new novel.”
The subject reminds me of one of the worst case of timing and one of the most bizarre stories I broke during two decades at Variety. It was a story about how Wolf had put together a five-hour miniseries that was going to meld the casts of the various Law & Order series, as they respond to a series of terror attacks in New York City and follow the clues. Seemed like a good story to break, but unfortunately it landed on the paper’s front page on the morning of September 11, 2001. Needless to say, Wolf scrapped that miniseries but clearly he has thought long and hard about the subject matter.