Patricia Cornwell

Patricia Cornwell, after 18 years at Penguin, has jumped ship to HarperCollins. She is the first writer to go elsewhere after the Penguin and Random House mega-merger. 

She's signed on for an eight-figure, two book deal--which is huge. With this Cornwell will have a global English language publisher for the first time.

Cornwell is best known for her crime novels about medical examiner Kay Scarpetta. She's also released two cookbooks. Her next book to be released in November will be Dust, the 21st in the Scarpetta series. It will be the last book in her deal with Penguin. 

The next, due in Fall 2014, will be released under HarperCollins' William Morris imprint.