Stephenie Meyer’s mind is not on vampires — it’s on secret agents.
Meyer, author of the bestselling Twilight Saga novels, will publish her first thriller on Nov. 15.
“The Chemist” introduces a former secret agent forced to go on the run, hiding from members of the government who fear she knows too much.
“’The Chemist’ is the love child created from the union of my romantic sensibilities and my obsession with Jason Bourne/Aaron Cross,” Meyer wrote in a statement. “I very much enjoyed spending time with a different kind of action hero, one whose primary weapon isn’t a gun or a knife or bulging muscles, but rather her brain.”
Here’s what Meyer’s publisher says about the plot:
She used to work for the U.S. government, but very few people ever knew that. An expert in her field, she was one of the darkest secrets of an agency so clandestine it doesn’t even have a name. And when they decided she was a liability, they came for her without warning.
Now she rarely stays in the same place or uses the same name for long. They’ve killed the only other person she trusted, but something she knows still poses a threat. They want her dead, and soon.
When her former handler offers her a way out, she realizes it’s her only chance to erase the giant target on her back. But it means taking one last job for her ex-employers. To her horror, the information she acquires only makes her situation more dangerous.
Resolving to meet the threat head-on, she prepares for the toughest fight of her life but finds herself falling for a man who can only complicate her likelihood of survival. As she sees her choices being rapidly whittled down, she must apply her unique talents in ways she never dreamed of.
The protagonist’s name is still under wraps.
Meyer is best known for her young adult “Twilight” series, centered around the romance between vampire Edward Cullen, frozen in time as a teen, and human Bella Swan. Over the course of the four-book series, the story tracks tensions among different vampire clans, Bella’s desire to become a vampire herself and a love triangle between Edward, Bella and her werewolf friend, Jacob.
The series proved successful across publishing and film. Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson broke out as the stars of the five movies based on Meyer’s novels. Those films grossed around $1.4 billion in North America. E.L. James’s bestselling “Fifty Shades of Grey” famously began as “Twilight” fan fiction.
Meyer had planned a volume of the series told from Edward’s perspective instead of Bella’s, titled “Midnight Sun,” but put the project on hold after a partial manuscript was leaked online in 2008.
Last fall, for the series’ 10th anniversary, Meyer published “Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined” in a special edition of the original novel. “Life and Death” swapped the genders of her romantic duo, making the female character the vampire (Edythe, instead of Edward) and the male character her human love interest (Beaufort, or Beau, instead of Bella).