Jeanne Mosure at Disney Publishing Worldwide has acquired Zodiac, based on the Chinese zodiac, written by comic book legend Stan Lee with Stuart Moore, illustrated by Andie Tong. Nachie Marsham will edit. The illustrated novel follows Steven Lee, a Chinese-American teenager who is drawn into a mysterious conspiracy surrounding 12 mystical pools of energy and a power-hungry secret organization. It will be released in January 2015; the project was unagented.
Melanie Cecka at Knopf has bought North American rights to Illuminae, a YA trilogy by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff in a pre-empt. The story is told through a dossier of hacked documents – including emails, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, graphics, and more – for what's billed as a found footage-style mashup of Battlestar Gallactica and Ten Things I Hate About You. Publication will begin in fall 2015; Tracey and Josh Adams at Adams Literary represented Kaufman, and Matt Bialer and Lindsay Ribar at Sanford J Greenburger Associates represented Kristoff.
Nancy Hinkel at Knopf has acquired world rights to Marc Brown's Monkey, a picture book that Brown both wrote and illustrated. The story features Monkey, a five-year-old about to start kindergarten, who shares the same fears and anxieties that many children have before beginning school. Publication is set for fall 2015; the deal was unagented.
Stacey Friedberg at Dial has bought Juliana Romano's debut novel, A History of What Happened. Pitched as The Perks of Being a Wallflower meets The Summer I Turned Pretty, the YA novel takes place during one year of high school, as an introspective 15-year-old grows distant from her childhood best friend and closer to her friend's longtime crush. Publication is scheduled for 2015; Logan Garrison at the Gernert Company negotiated the two-book deal for world English rights.
Arthur Levine of Scholastic's Arthur A. Levine Books imprint has bought Love, Santa by Martha Brockenbrough (The Dinosaur Tooth Fairy). Through a little girl's letters to Santa Claus, the picture book addresses that moment when she starts to question the truth about Santa, how he gets down all those chimneys, and who he really is; the answer provides both the truth and a way to continue to believe. Publication is scheduled for 2015; Sarah Davies of the Greenhouse Literary Agency did the deal for world rights.
Anne Schwartz at Random House's Schwartz & Wade Books has acquired world rights to Yumi Heo's Sun and Moon Have a Tea Party, a picture book about an argument between the sun and the moon over what happens during the day and in the night. Publication is set for spring 2016; the project was unagented.
Pura Belpré Illustration Award-winner Rafael López has two new projects. For Reka Simonsen at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, he will illustrate Newbery Honor author Margarita Engle's The Drum Dream Girl, a poem about a girl who dreams of playing the drums at a time when women were not allowed to be professional musicians. For Jeannette Larson at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt he will illustrate Isabel F. Campoy and Theresa Howell's Maybe Something Beautiful, inspired by the Urban Art Trail project in San Diego, which began with murals created by the artist with the help of the community, and went on to include painted utility boxes and benches, mosaics around trees, and poems written on sidewalks. Adriana Dominguez and Stefanie Von Borstel at Full Circle Literary did both deals for world rights, on behalf of the authors and the illustrator.
David Levithan at Scholastic Press has bought North American rights to Kiersten White and Jim Di Bartolo's In the Shadows, in a preempt. It was pitched as "Hugo Cabret meets Miss Peregrine," and the story is told "in an alternating narrative of words and pictures." Publication is scheduled for summer 2014. Jane Putch at Eyebait Management represented Di Bartolo; White was represented by Michelle Wolfson at Wolfson Literary. Film and foreign rights are controlled by Eyebait Management.
Caitlyn Dlouhy at Atheneum has signed the eighth title in the Click Clack Moo franchise from Doreen Cronin and Betsy Lewin. In the new book, Click Clack Peep, the usual characters find themselves sharing the stage with an ingénue, for the first time. Publication is set for spring 2015; Holly McGhee at Pippin Properties did the deal on behalf of both Cronin and Lewin, for North American and U.K. rights.
Pam Gruber at Little, Brown has bought Trace by TV writer and showrunner P.K. Simonds (Ghost Whisperer; Party of Five). Pitched as Ghost meets Bones, it tells the story of a New York teenage girl-turns-ghost and her living classmates in a criminal justice program, working to solve the mystery of her murder and others. It will pub in fall 2015; Dorian Karchmar at William Morris Endeavor did the two-book deal for North American rights.
Calista Brill at First Second bought world rights to a middle-grade trilogy, The Nameless City by Faith Erin Hicks, in a three-book, six-figure deal. In the books, an unlikely friendship forms between a native of Nameless City and a girl whose father's army has newly conquered the city. The two of them must find common ground between their cultures and foil a sinister conspiracy. Bernadette Baker-Baughman at Victoria Sanders & Associates brokered the deal.
Liz Szabla at Feiwel and Friends has acquired two YA novels from S.A. Bodeen, author of The Compound and The Gardener, among others. The Detour, slated for fall 2015, follows the kidnapping of a bestselling teenage author; the second book is as yet untitled. Feiwel and Friends has world English rights; all other rights are held by Scott Mendel of the Mendel Media Group.
Sharyn Rosart at POW! has acquired Attack! Boss! Cheat Code!, a picture book by Chris Barton pitched as an irreverent abecediary of video game terminology that children might use to educate their parents. It will publish fall 2014; Erin Murphy of Erin Murphy Literary did the deal for world English rights.
Maria Modugno at Random House and Sue Buswell at Random House U.K. has bought Families! Families! Families! by Suzanne Lang, illustrated by Max Lang, in a joint acquisition. The book is a rhyming catalog of different varieties of families; publication is scheduled for spring 2015. Fonda Snyder of Alchemy Ink sold world English rights.
Michelle Nagler at Random House has bought Micol Ostow's Louisa Trapeze, a chapter book series about a girl raised in a circus family who wants to soar on the flying trapeze, until she realizes she's afraid of heights. The books will launch in 2015; Jodi Reamer at Writers House sold world English rights.