Little more than a year after acquiring the business and publishing assets of Ticktock Entertainment in March 2012, Octopus Publishing Group, known for its illustrated book lines about cooking, gardening, crafts, health, and other nonfiction topics for adults, officially launched its first children’s book imprint this past spring.
To date there are 100 nonfiction titles on the Octopus/Ticktock list, primarily illustrated books for the five-to-eight age range. Octopus is releasing Ticktock titles simultaneously in both print and electronic formats, aimed at both the institutional and trade markets.
“This age group have come to expect good design and engaging content across all digital platforms,” explained deputy executive editor Andrew Welham from Octopus’s London headquarters. “We need to ensure we are delivering just that wherever possible in the books they read.”
About half of the titles on the Ticktock list are volumes in the I Love Reading Phonics series, which is overseen by educational consultant Abigail Steel. The final 12 titles in the I Love Reading Phonics series will be published this fall, along with 28 other releases, including Journey Through the Solar System (Oct.), The Big Body Book (Nov.), and Book of Beasts (Nov.).
The company’s bestselling children’s title is Deadly Animals: Ultimate Top Ten, Meet the World’s Most Dangerous Creatures, with more than 150,000 copies sold to date since its publication in June 2012. Also doing well: Fast & Furious, which introduces young readers to an assortment of vehicles that transport occupants by land, air, and water. The book, which just released this month, has already sold more than 100,000 copies to date, many of them in supermarkets. That doesn’t surprise Welham. “It’s a great subject, and a great price of $9.99,” he said.