Congratulations on the publication of BEHIND YOU by Catherine Hernandez publishing today from HarperCollins Canada!

As terror grips a city, a young girl faces danger closer to home and chilling memories that last a lifetime.

Catherine Hernandez’s most gripping and affecting novel yet, Behind You is inspired by a horrifying chapter in Canadian history and follows fictional characters terrorized by a fictional perpetrator.

Alma is a Filipina woman who works as a film editor for a cheesy True Crime series featuring the most notorious killers of the 20th century called Infamous. On the surface she seems to live a good life with her wife Nira and teenage son, Mateo. But there is so much left unsaid.

It’s not until Infamous’ last episode features the Scarborough Stalker that she remembers coming of age while the serial rapist and killer was attacking women and girls in Scarborough in the late 80s and early 90s.

What unfolds are two storylines: In the past, young Alma watches an entire city become consumed with a manhunt for an elusive, terrifying suspect, while she herself is in jeopardy from closer corners. In the present, adult Alma must come to terms with her own ideas of consent to stop her son’s dangerous behaviour towards his girlfriend.

Weaving back and forth in time, Behind You, is a moving story of one girl’s resilience into adulthood and a chilling portrayal of the insidiousness if rape culture. It daringly turns the Whodunit genre on its head by asking the question “Who hasn’t done it?” As in, who has not been complicit in sexual harm?

Exciting News for BEHIND YOU:

Damon D’Oliveira and Clement Virgo of Conquering Lion Pictures, known for their acclaimed works, Brother and The Book of Negroes, have secured the highly anticipated film and television rights to Catherine Hernandez’s upcoming novel BEHIND YOU!

Hernandez will adapt her own novel for the big screen. The novel serves as Hernandez’s eagerly awaited follow-up to her national bestseller, The Story of Us. Hernandez says, “I knew Conquering Lion Pictures was the right home for the film adaptation of BEHIND YOU simply because when I declared my desire to pen the screenplay myself, Clement Virgo casually said, ‘Yeah. You know what you’re doing.’ You rarely hear that as a racialized woman in the media industry. And given the journey of my novel’s protagonist from scarred to self-assured woman in the face of misogyny, it felt empowering to begin the script fueled by Conquering Lion Pictures’ guidance and confidence in me. I wholeheartedly trust them as well. Given their track record of outstanding adaptations, from The Book of Negroes to Brother, I know this sensitive story is in compassionate, accomplished hands.”

Clement Virgo and Damon D’Oliveira , co-founders of Conquering Lion Pictures, expressed their enthusiasm for the project: “Catherine has crafted an unapologetic story that explores timely themes in an astonishingly fresh voice. As with our previous slate, we look forward to producing an adaptation of this compelling story for the screen.”

Rights were sold by Samantha Haywood at Transatlantic Literary Agency. Damon D’Oliveira negotiated the deal on behalf of Conquering Lion Pictures.

Catherine Hernandez is an award-winning author and screenwriter. She is a proud queer woman who is of Filipino, Spanish, Chinese and Indian descent and married into the Navajo Nation. Her first novel, SCARBOROUGH, won the Jim Wong-Chu Award for the unpublished manuscript; was shortlisted for the Toronto Book Awards, the Evergreen Forest of Reading Award, the Edmund White Award, and the Trillium Book Award; and a finalist for Canada Reads 2022. She wrote the screenplay for the film adaptation of SCARBOROUGH, produced by Compy Films and levelFILM. It was the 1st runner-up for the coveted People’s Choice Award at the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival, won the Shawn Mendes Foundation Changemaker Award, was nominated for 11 Canadian Screen Awards and won eight including Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay. The film won the Panavision Spirit Award for Independent Cinema at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival and was named #3 of the 20 Greatest Toronto Movies Ever Made by the Globe and Mail. 

Her second novel, CROSSHAIRS, published simultaneously in Canada, the US and the UK, was shortlisted for the Toronto Book Award and made the CBC’s Best Canadian Fiction, NOW Magazine’s 10 Best Books, Indigo Best Book, Audible Best Audiobooks and NBC 20 Best LGBTQ Books list of 2020. Her third novel, THE STORY OF US, was an instant national bestseller. Her fourth novel, BEHIND YOU, launches on May 7. She is currently working on a few television projects.

Catherine is represented by Samantha Haywood.

Congratulations Catherine!