Frederick Warne has announced that it will publish The Further Tale of Peter Rabbit, written by Oscar-winning actress and screenwriter Emma Thompson, in September 2012. Scheduled to be released simultaneously in the U.S. and the UK, the book is the 24th tale starring Peter Rabbit. Its publication marks the first time Warne has published an original addition to the series of books that Beatrix Potter wrote between 1902 and 1930.
Potter’s inaugural Peter Rabbit story, The Tale of Peter Rabbit, has never been out of print since its 1902 publication. More than 150 million Peter Rabbit books have been sold worldwide in over 35 languages. With more than 350 licensees, The World of Beatrix Potter, initiated by the late author herself, is one of the longest-running and largest international literature-based licensing programs.
In Thompson’s version, inspired by her knowledge of Potter’s childhood holidays in Scotland, she sends Peter Rabbit north to that country. There he meets a gentle giant who is a distant Scottish relative.
Known to possess a dry sense of humor, as was Potter, Thompson is a longtime devotee of Peter and his pals. “I’ve always loved Beatrix Potter, as a child and then as a mother and all the years in-between as well,” she said in a statement. “When Mr. Rabbit invited me to write a further tale, I was more honored than I can say. I hope I don’t let him or his extraordinary creator down.”
Don Weisberg, president of Penguin Young Readers Group, said, “We are thrilled to be involved in the publication of a new Peter Rabbit adventure from world-class actress Emma Thompson. Now children the world over can delight in a new story starring one of the most iconic and beloved characters in children’s literature.”