Sam Raimi attached to upcoming Lehane novel.

On Sept 23rd, Dennis Lehane will release The Given Day, It has been five years since Shutter Island was released. Since then, intelligent readers everywhere have been waiting with baited breath for new novel.

Since then, two of his novels (Mystic River, Gone Baby Gone) have been made into films, with Martin Scorsese in the middle of shooting a third (Shutter Island).

Now Columbia has purchased the rights to The Given Day, a full three months before it even reaches stores.

Sam Raimi (Spider Man films, Darkman, For the Love of the Game) has signed on to produce and direct.

“The Given Day” is set in 1919 Boston, with the city in turmoil as soldiers are returning home from WWI, having brought back an epidemic of Spanish influenza. Attempts to unionize the police department have set the stage for a historic strike and two cops take center stage.

Crimespree publisher Ruth Jordan has read TGD, so I asked her what she thought of it:
“Dennis Lehane is today’s most visual writer of words and Hollywood seems to agree with me. This Fall’s THE GIVEN DAY is a novel that embraces the tenacity of Americans from page one. Set in 1919,THE GIVEN day will speak to its reader in 2008. War, A Pandemic, Workers Strife, and Race Relations are all part of a story that celebrates who we are and the value of individual experiences. Rich in both historical fact and characters you cannot stop “watching” , THE GIVEN DAY is an ambitious and beautiful book succinctly Lehane. It could conceivably be the first truly EPIC movie of the new millennium.”

I am thrilled to see Dennis’ work getting all this attention. Not only is he a great writer, but a damn fine fellow.