PW Children's Bookshelf: Breaking children's and YA publishing news, author interviews, bestsellers lists and reviews.
PW Open Access
In the Spotlight
While the book publishing industry is responding daily to the coronavirus outbreak, we will provide continuing coverage on efforts by publishers, authors, booksellers, and more.
71167-1.JPGLibrary Programming for Teens Goes Virtual During Covid-19
Unable to open their doors to their communities, youth services librarians across the country have taken their programs online. Click through to see some of the most innovative approaches, from trivia nights and social media challenges to scavenger hunts and more. more more_arrow.gif
71176-1.JPGBookselling in the Age of Covid-19:
Shipping Tips, Book Boxes, and Giving Back

Continuing our series on how children's bookstores are responding to the needs of their communities during the pandemic, we spoke with a number of booksellers about the rewards and challenges of pivoting to offer curbside pickup and free shipping. more more_arrow.gif
41180-2.JPGHow Kids' Lit Is Responding to the Coronavirus
PW is tracking some of the most creative initiatives by authors and publishers on social media and across the web. Updated for today's issue, this list includes a free coronavirus e-book featuring The Princess in Black, Bookshop website lists for debut YA titles, Lectura’s Bilingual resources for parents and educators, Beanstack’s reading challenge with Lerner sports titles, and more. more more_arrow.gif
Agent Moose
Cover Reveal
71186-1.JPGNew Fairy Tale-Forward Series
From Melissa de la Cruz

We spoke with author Melissa de la Cruz about Never After, her new middle grade series in which classic stories collide with real-life. The first title, The Thirteenth Fairy, goes on sale December 1 from Macmillan's Roaring Brook Press imprint; click through to see our early look at the cover and concept. more more_arrow.gif
71224-1.JPGRobert Kimmel Smith
Writer and children's book author Robert Kimmel Smith, widely known for such popular middle grade novels as Chocolate Fever and The War with Grandpa, died on April 18 at his home in Manhattan of natural causes; he was 89. An early reader, Smith began jotting down his own stories in grade school and continued that pursuit into high school, at which point he knew he wanted to become a writer. more more_arrow.gif
In the News
41153-1.JPGRandom House Launches Virtual
'Magic Tree House' Program

Random House Children’s Books and Mary Pope Osborne, author of the popular Magic Tree House series, are teaming up for a new online program, aimed at keeping young readers engaged during the coronavirus crisis. Magic Tree House Home Adventures will run through May 22, featuring weekly themed videos, crafts, games, reading challenges, and other activities. more more_arrow.gif
71153-v1-300x.JPGB&N Launches National Children’s Short Story Contest
While families are hunkered down at home together, Barnes & Noble is giving aspiring young authors a chance to showcase their creativity—and become published. Contestants can submit written or graphic short stories to be considered for inclusion in an upcoming B&N anthology. more more_arrow.gif
Book News
41155-1.JPGU.K. Demand Prompts U.S. Edition of
'I Don’t Want to Wash My Hands!'

Books have long been a tool for helping children understand their world and calm their fears, especially in times of crisis. As families seek out ways to discuss the current coronavirus pandemic and encourage kids to embrace more vigilant hygiene practices, they can now turn to a title from popular British illustrator Tony Ross. more more_arrow.gif
Reading Report
71155-1.JPGNew and Noteworthy Novel Sequels: April 2020
Novel sequels releasing this month include a second case for a gang of kid sleuths; the further adventures of a young do-gooder; the topsy-turvy journey of three siblings; and more. more more_arrow.gif
Licensing News
71189-1.JPGScholastic Visits the
'Dino Ranch'

Scholastic has acquired the master publishing rights for Boat Rocker Studios' Dino Ranch, an animated series for preschoolers scheduled to debut on Disney Junior in the U.S. in the first quarter of 2021. The inaugural books are set for a fall 2021 release. more more_arrow.gif
Q & A
71163-1.JPGKatherine Applegate
The author of The One and Only Ivan follows up that 2013 Newbery winner in The One and Only Bob. Katherine Applegate's sequel is narrated by gorilla Ivan's best friend, Chihuahua mutt Bob, a tough-talking but soft-hearted former stray who has become a bit spoiled since being rescued by a caring family. Applegate discussed her motivation for the new book.

Q: Was it at all intimidating to tackle a sequel?

A: I guess I went into it thinking that sequels are almost always disappointing on some level. When readers have a positive experience with a book, in a sequel an author might evoke that experience but never duplicate it. At the same time, I knew that Bob’s was a fun voice and one I was familiar with. And on every school visit I make, without fail kids will say, ‘There’s got to be a One and Only Bob!’ more more_arrow.gif
PW KidsCast: Listen Now
Hear our latest podcasts, featuring Supriya Kelkar, Tomi Adeyemi, Kwame Alexander, Jonathan Auxier, Antony Barone Kolenc, Lauren DeStefano and Gaia Cornwall, Hafsah Faizal, Carlos Hernandez, Brittney Morris, Christopher Myers, Steve Sheinkin, and Rebecca Stead – listen to these and other top writers and artists discuss their new books for children and teens in our PW KidsCast podcast. Click here to listen.


For more about these and other great jobs, visit the new PW JobZone, now with resume hosting and more!

Rights Report
41157-1.JPG Deirdre Jones at Little, Brown has acquired bestselling adult author Chuck Wendig's debut middle grade novel, Dust & Grim. Cosplay-loving Molly and her stuffy older brother Dustin must reluctantly team up to save their family's monster-serving mortuary business, which is being threatened by a rogue devourer. Publication is scheduled for fall 2021; Stacia Decker at Dunow, Carlson & Lerner negotiated the deal for world rights.
41158-2.JPG Dana Leydig at Viking has bought, in an exclusive submission, Eternally Yours, a YA paranormal romance anthology edited by Patrice Caldwell (editor of A Phoenix First Must Burn). In addition to a contribution from Caldwell, the volume will include short stories by Kendare Blake, Kat Cho, Melissa de la Cruz, Emily Duncan, Hafsah Faizal, Sarah Gailey, Alexis Henderson, Adib Khorram, Kwame Mbalia, Anna-Marie McLemore, Casey McQuiston, Sandhya Menon, Danielle Paige, Akshaya Raman, Marie Rutkoski, and Julian Winters. Publication is set for fall 2022; Alexandra Machinist and Hillary Jacobson at ICM Partners did the deal for world English rights.
41159-1.JPG Jennifer Ung at Simon Pulse has acquired, in a six-figure auction, MIT student and Her Campus 22 Under 22 honoree Rona Wang's debut novel, You Had Me at Hello World. The YA rom-com follows a Chinese-American teen who is invited to a coding competition at MIT, where she teams up with a cute tech industry prodigy to work on an app to help immigrants connect and put down roots. Publication is slated for spring 2022; Penny Moore at Aevitas Creative Management brokered the two-book deal for world rights.
41160-1.JPG Alessandra Balzer at HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray has bought The Legacies and another YA novel by Stonewall Honor author Abdi Nazemian. The Legacies follows five wildly different teens who confront their boarding school's culture of abuse while facing their own demons in an exclusive writing class. Publication is planned for spring 2021; John Cusick at Folio Jr./Folio Literary Management did the deal for North American rights.
41161-1.JPG Rachel Murray at Holt has acquired, at auction, world English rights to Al Graziadei's YA contemporary debut, Icebreaker. This hate-to-love romance follows a hockey legacy who is on track to become the NHL's top draft pick, even while barely coping with his untreated depression. Then a catastrophe named Jaysen Caulfield strikes, threatening his #1 spot and stealing his heart. Publication is scheduled for winter 2022; Jennifer Azantian at Azantian Literary Agency handled the two-book deal.
41162-1.JPG Mallory Kass at Scholastic has bought Out of the Fire, a YA novel by Andrea Contos (Throwaway Girls), and a second, untitled novel. It wasn't the kidnapping that ruined Cass Adams's life, but the pink envelopes that followed—each a reminder that the man she escaped is always watching. She forms an alliance with three friends who have also been wronged by men, and the quartet sets out on a dangerous quest for justice, until Cass realizes that the man who ruined her life may be the only one who can save it. Publication is set for fall 2021; Sarah Davies at Greenhouse Literary brokered the deal for world English rights.
41163-1.JPG Vicki Lame at Wednesday Books has acquired Elizabeth Kilcoyne's YA Southern Gothic debut, Wake the Bones, in which 19-year-old Laurel Early must unravel her mother's terrifying legacy and tap into her own innate magic to save everyone she loves before it's too late. Publication is slated for summer 2022; Erin Clyburn at the Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world English rights.
41165-2.JPG Suzy Capozzi at Sterling Children's Books has acquired world rights to Halli Gomez's debut #OwnVoices YA novel List of Ten, an account of a teen living with Tourette syndrome and obsessive-compulsive disorder and contemplating his own mortality. Publication is slated for spring 2021 as part of the launch of YA imprint Sterling Teen; Deborah Warren at East/West Literary Agency brokered the deal.
41164-1.JPG Mari Kesselring at Flux has bought E.J. Schwartz's YA contemporary debut, Before We Were Blue, a dual POV pitched as Cheer meets Girl, Interrupted. In a treatment center for their eating disorders, former cheer-lebrity Shoshana and headstrong rebel Rowan develop a bond. Ultimately, they will have to make a choice: be healthy on their own, or stay sick together. Publication is planned for fall 2021; Kaitlyn Johnson at Corvisiero Literary Agency did the deal for world English rights.
41166-1.JPG Alyson Heller at Aladdin has bought Barbara Dee's (Halfway Normal; Maybe He Just Likes You) latest middle grade novel, called Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet. The book stars Haven, a girl combatting eco-anxiety and an obsession with climate change by fighting against the company whose factory is polluting the river running through her town. Publication is set for fall 2022; Jill Grinberg at Jill Grinberg Literary Management negotiated the two-book deal for North American rights.
41167-1.JPG Margaret Raymo at Versify has acquired, in a preempt, Nicole D. Collier's debut middle grade novel, Just Right Jillian. Fifth grader Jillian will do anything to blend in. But after a bully says she can never be a winner, she sets out to win her school's biggest battle of wits. Publication is scheduled for fall 2021; Danielle Chiotti at Upstart Crow Literary brokered the two-book deal for North American rights.
41168-1.JPG Jenne Abramowitz at Scholastic Press has bought A Touch of Ruckus by Ash Van Otterloo (Cattywampus). In this middle grade fantasy, a peacemaking girl burdened by her prideful family's secrets finds solace in ghost hunting with her nonbinary crush inside a nearby forest. But when the ghosts reveal that the forest's existence is threatened, she must find the link between how they died and her own family's secrets. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Lauren Spieller at TriadaUS Literary Agency did the deal for world rights.
41169-2.JPG Ben Rosenthal at HarperCollins has acquired the first three books in Eliot Schrefer's The Animal Rescue Agency series, in which a fox and her rooster colleague save animals in distress around the world. Publication for the first book is planned for January 2021; Richard Pine at InkWell Management negotiated the deal for world rights.
41170-1.JPG Emilia Rhodes at HMH has bought, in an exclusive submission, Izzy at the End of the World by K.A. Reynolds (The Land of Yesterday and The Spinner of Dreams). This middle grade novel follows Izzy, a neurodiverse girl, surviving the end of the world with her dog as a companion as she uncovers the truth about her mother. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022; Thao Le at Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency brokered the deal for world rights.
41171-1.JPG Andrew Arnold at HarperAlley has acquired, in a multiple offer situation, world rights to Friendbots by former Google product designer Vicky Fang (the Layla and the Bots series). The STEM-inspired early graphic novel series is about friendship and robots. Publication of both books is set for spring 2021; Elizabeth Bennett at Transatlantic Agency negotiated the two-book deal.
41172-2.JPG Carol Hinz at Lerner/Millbrook has bought world rights to Chris Barton's How to Make a Book (About My Dog), with Sarah Horne illustrating. The nonfiction picture book allows kids to follow a nonfiction book (about Chris's dog, Ernie) through the process of creation and publication. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Erin Murphy at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author, and Jodie Hodges at United Agents UK represented the illustrator.
41173-1.JPG Helen H. Wu at Yeehoo Press has acquired North American English and simplified Chinese rights to Amalia Hoffman's How to Make a Mean Monster, a picture book about humans and monsters who discover that it is possible to overcome bias and form a wonderful friendship. Publication is planned for spring 2021; Anna Olswanger of Olswanger Literary represented the author-illustrator.
41174-1.JPG Arthur Levine at Levine Querido has bought world rights to Kristen Mai Giang's (l.) second picture book, Last Flight, based on the true story of Kristen's family's escape from Vietnam six days before the fall of Saigon in 1975. Saigon-based artist Xuan Loc Xuan will illustrate. Publication is scheduled for 2021; Erin Murphy at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author, and the artist represented herself.
41175-1.JPG Clarissa Wong at HarperCollins has acquired, in an exclusive submission, world rights to Playing at the Border: A Story of Yo-Yo Ma by Joanna Ho (l.), illustrated by Teresa Martinez. The picture book centers cellist Yo-Yo Ma using his music to build bridges instead of walls—a testament to music, humanity, and what unites us. Publication is set for fall 2021; Caryn Wiseman at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Aurora Meyer at Astound represented the illustrator.
41176-1.JPG Sarah Jane Abbott at S&S/Wiseman has bought world rights to Loud and Proud by Coretta Scott Honor author Lesa Cline-Ransome (l.), illustrated by Kaylani Juanita. This picture book biography of Shirley Chisholm looks at the life of the trailblazing congresswoman who mobilized women voters during her run as the first African American candidate for President. Publication is slated for fall 2022; Rosemary Stimola at Stimola Literary Studio represented the author, and Charlotte Sheedy at Charlotte Sheedy Literary Agency represented the illustrator.
41177-1.JPG Jill Davis at HarperCollins has acquired world English rights to The Family Business by Lenore Appelhans (Chick-O-Saurus Rex), illustrated by Ken Lamug (Ghastly Ghosts). In the picture book, a younger brother raccoon yearns to join "the family business"—but the "business" turns out not to be entirely on the up and up. Publication is planned for summer 2022; Stephen Barbara at InkWell Management represented the author, and Andrea Cascardi at Transatlantic Agency represented the artist.
To see all of this week's deals, click here. more_arrow.gif


Elizabeth Bluemle
When the Mail Makes You Cry Happy

The best batch of mail we’ve ever had.

more »

Kenny Brechner
Two Twos

Two things I’m pretty sure are true and two things we’re doing at DDG to work around the closure of our selling floor.

more »

Elizabeth Bluemle
Publishers: Think Like a Kid

Pushing books back several months affects children differently from adults.

more »

Elizabeth Bluemle
Stars and Stares

Kind acts and thoughtful generosity shine through the darker moments of this crisis.

more »

41187-1.JPGstar.gifWhat’s the Matter, Marlo?
Andrew Arnold. Roaring Brook, $18.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-250-22323-4

Marlo and the narrator of this book are best friends who love dogs and dog jokes. “We read together. We laugh together. We play games together,” writes Arnold in his picture book debut. When Marlo falls into a funk that he won’t explain, an emotional void opens up. What starts out as a modest book soon becomes profound and reassuring. more more_arrow.gif


41188-1.JPGstar.gifNana Akua Goes to School
Tricia Elam Walker, illus. by April Harrison. Random/Schwartz & Wade, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-525-58113-0

Zura’s school is inviting grandparents to visit, and though her Ghanaian grandmother, Nana Akua, is “her favorite person in the whole universe,” Zura is worried that her tribal facial markings will draw unwanted attention. Once in Zura’s classroom, Nana Akua paints Adinkra symbols on the faces of Zura’s classmates in a visit that delights everyone. Newcomer Walker offers a compelling portrait of a grandmother whose pride and poise put concern about difference to rest. more more_arrow.gif


41189-1.JPGstar.gifHome Base
Nikki Tate, illus. by Katie Kath. Holiday House, $18.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8234-3663-7

In this rhythmic celebration of family and self-reliance, a mother and daughter embark from their shared home into parallel story arcs—the single parent begins a bricklaying job, while the child joins a baseball team. Kath’s pastel and watercolor illustrations enliven the text, with vibrant, nostalgic-style panels that align the two narratives. This picture book unobtrusively featuring women in nontraditional roles empowers, as does its message of teamwork and support. more more_arrow.gif


41190-1.JPGstar.gifLobizona (Wolves of No World #1)
Romina Garber. Wednesday, $18.99 (400p) ISBN 978-1-250-23912-9

In a timely work of magical realism, Garber tackles issues of nationalism, identity, and belonging. Sixteen-year-old Manu has spent her whole life in hiding; even as her period substantially changes her body each month, she cannot visit the doctor. She and her mother are undocumented immigrants from Argentina. Fearing deportation, they stick within the area around their Miami apartment complex, and Manu keeps her strange eyes covered. more more_arrow.gif


41191-1.JPGstar.gifToday Tonight Tomorrow
Rachel Lynn Solomon. Simon Pulse, $18.99 (384p) ISBN 978-1-5344-4024-1

Every morning, Neil McNair awakens Rowan Roth with a taunting text: they’re the two top students in the senior class, and sworn rivals. But on the last day of school, there are only two competitions left: who will make valedictorian, and who will win Howl, a citywide senior class event, “part Assassin, part scavenger hunt.” Enemies turned lovers is an old romance trope, but in Solomon’s deft hands, this funny, tender, and romantic book is fresh and wholly satisfying. more more_arrow.gif

April 28, 2020
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How to Be a Person
40390-1.JPGChildren's Frontlist Fiction
#1 Fetch-22 (Dog Man #8) by Dav Pilkey. Click here more_arrow.gif
41139-v1-150x.JPGPicture Books
#1 The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. Click here more_arrow.gif
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