Steve Laube, The Steve Laube Agency president, acquired Marcher Lord Press, the premier science fiction and fantasy publisher for the Christian market. The sale closed Jan. 1.

Laube has long been a champion of the genre, going back to his days as an acquisition editor at Bethany House Publishers. Jeff Gerke, founder of Marcher Lord Press, said “I could not have found a better person to buy the company I started in 2008.” Marcher Lord Press’s 40-title backlist has many titles nominated or winning both Christy and Carol awards for being the best in their genre.

Marcher Lord Press will run as a separate company. The agency, founded in 2004, has four agents and more than 150 active authors ( with contracts for nearly 1,000 new books.

Gerke will focus his efforts on his freelance editorial and publishing service business and his own writing. Laube plans four to eight new title releases in 2014.

“I have long believed that this genre has been underserved in our industry despite its inherent ability to tell ‘fantastic’ stories of philosophical and theological depth,” Laube said.