In an auction with eight publishers participating, Emily Meehan at Disney-Hyperion has acquired North American rights to Emily Kate Johnston's A Thousand Nights, a YA fantasy set in the deserts of the Middle East. It tells the story of the unbreakable bond between sisters, and the dangerous magic that love and the will for survival can create. Johnston is the author of The Story of Owen, which debuted earlier this month. Publication is scheduled for fall 2015; Josh Adams at Adams Literary handled the two-book deal.
Caitlyn Dlouhy at S&S/Atheneum has bought a collection of Jeanne and William Steig's poetry and prose collaborations, which were originally published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux and HarperCollins, and include Alpha Beta Chowder, Consider the Lemming, The Old Testament Made Easy, A Handful of Beans, and A Gift from Zeus. Publication in 2016 is planned; Holly McGhee at Pippin Properties did the deal for North American rights.
Ken Wright and Kendra Levin at Viking Children's Books have acquired a debut by 19-year-old author Karen Bao called Dove Rising, first in a sci-fi trilogy set on the Moon. Introverted Phaet Theta is a model citizen whose mettle, faith, and beliefs are tested when she's forced to confront disturbing truths about her society and its government in order to save her family. Publication is slated for August 2014. Simon Lipskar at Writers House negotiated for world English rights; Cecilia de la Campa at Writers House has foreign rights, and Matthew Snyder at CAA has film rights.
Andrea Spooner at Little, Brown, along with Amber Caraveo at Orion Children's U.K., has acquired world rights to four books in a new middle-grade series called The Tapper Twins, by Chronicles of Egg author Geoff Rodkey. The series begins with The Tapper Twins Go to War (with Each Other) and offers an oral history of a prank war between a brother and sister – accompanied by interjections from parents and friends and documented by text message, screen shots, photographs, and illustrations – that escalates into an all-out battle in the virtual world. Publication is scheduled to begin in spring 2015; Josh Getzler at Hannigan Salky Getzler Agency brokered the deal.
Georgia McBride at Month9Books has bought world rights to The Dragonrider Chronicles, an upper-middle-grade/YA fantasy series from Nicole Conway. Originally self-published in October 2013, Fledgling, the first title in the series, sold 30,000 e-book units from October to January 2014. Month9Books will publish the series, in which a half-human half-elf boy rises to fame after a dragon chooses him to be his rider, in the United States and Canada; first up will be Fledgling in April 2014, with its sequel, Avian, to follow in August 2014. The Susan Schulman Agency is handling foreign, film/TV, and audio rights.
Michael Strother at Simon Pulse has acquired, in a pre-empt, two YA novels by debut author Tim Floreen. The first, Willful Machines, is a light SF story centered on Lee Fisher, the closeted son of an ultra-conservative president, who loves science, robots and possibly, the Shakespeare-obsessed new boy at school. But when a sentient computer program turns into a terrorist threat, Lee’s life and secrets are in danger. Publication is planned for fall 2015; Quinlan Lee at Adams Literary negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Mary Kate Castellani at Bloomsbury Children's has acquired Burning by debut author Danielle Rollins, a YA horror novel pitched as Orange Is the New Black meets Carrie. Set within a juvenile detention facility, the book stars Angela, a girl just weeks from being released when she gets a new cellmate – a tiny yet dangerous 10-year-old who may be starting fires with her mind. It will be co-published with Ellen Holgate of Bloomsbury U.K. in January 2016; Mandy Hubbard at D4EO Literary Agency brokered the two-book deal for world English rights.
Maggie Lehrman at Abrams/Amulet has acquired, at auction, Dr. Critchlore’s School for Minionsand an untitled sequel by Sheila Grau. The middle-grade novels feature a werewolf named Runt, who uncovers a plot to sabotage his boarding school, the world's finest training program for aspiring minions to Evil Overlords. Publication is slated for spring 2015; Molly Ker Hawn at The Bent Agency did the deal for world English rights.
Kat Brzozowski at Thomas Dunne Books has bought Ann Jacobus's Romancing the Dark in the City of Light, in which a troubled teen living in Paris is torn between one boy who encourages her to embrace life and another – dark, dangerous, and deadly attractive – who tempts her to succumb to her fatal flaws. It's scheduled for 2015; Erzsi Deàk at Hen&ink negotiated for North American rights.
Karen Lotz at Candlewick Press has acquired Noah Builds an Ark by Kate Banks, winner of the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award and Charlotte Zolotow Award, a charming picture book that takes the Ark to the backyard. Erzsi Deàk at Hen&ink brokered the deal for world rights.
Yolanda Scott at Charlesbridge has acquired world rights to Julia Durango's The One Day House, a picture book that shows how one boy inspires a community to work together to repair his elderly friend's rundown home. Publication is scheduled for spring 2017; Tracey Adams at Adams Literary was the agent.
Sara Sargent at Simon Pulse has acquired The Museum of Heartbreak by Meg Leder, an editor at Perigee Books and co-author of The Happy Book. Pitched as Eleanor & Park meets Why We Broke Up, the YA novel tells the story of 17-year-old Penelope Marx, whose first love ends their relationship unceremoniously. She decides to curate the artifacts of their time together to help tell her story and heal her broken heart. Publication is scheduled for summer 2016; Michael Bourret at Dystel & Goderich did the deal for North American rights.
Sara Sargent has also acquired, in a pre-empt, Heartless Things and an untitled YA novel by Lisa Maxwell. In the story, Gwen and her best friend are abducted to a dark world akin to Pan's Labyrinth called Neverland, but it's nothing like the fairy tale. To rescue her friend, Gwen must decide whether to trust a roguish young pirate or the boy who calls himself Pan. Publication is scheduled for spring 2016; Kathleen Rushall at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency did the two-book deal for world rights.
Kat Brzozowski at Thomas Dunne Books has bought Push Girl co-author Jessica Love's In Real Life, set over one wild weekend in Las Vegas in which 17-year-old Hannah surprises her online BFF and soul mate Nick with their first real-life meeting – and discovers just how many secrets he has left unshared. The projected pub date is 2015; Jill Corcoran at Jill Corcoran Literary Agency negotiated for North American rights.
Lee Wade at Random House's Schwartz & Wade Books imprint has bought Cynthia Rylant and Christian Robinson's Winter Is Coming, a picture book in which a family of penguins enjoys a snowy winter day. Publication is slated for fall 2016; Steven Malk at Writers House represented the author and illustrator in the deal for world rights.
Janine O'Malley at Farrar, Straus and Giroux has bought I Love Everything You by Elizabeth McPike, illustrated by Paige Keiser, about the ways a new mother and father celebrate the first year of their baby's life. Kelly Sonnack at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Marcia Wernick at the Wernick & Pratt Agency represented the illustrator.
Bethany Strout at Little, Brown Books for Young Readers has acquired world rights to Teri Sloat's Zip! Zoom! On a Broom!, illustrated by Rosalinde Bonnet, a rhyming, counting-focused Halloween tale about 10 little witches trying to share one broomstick. Publication is scheduled for spring 2017; Abigail Samoun at Red Fox Literary was the agent for both author and illustrator.
Bethany Buck at Aladdin has acquired Wilder Boys, a two-book series by Brandon Wallace. In this middle-grade wilderness adventure, brothers Jake and Taylor Wilder search for the father they've never known, and are forced to use their wilderness skills to survive against both natural and human dangers. Both books will publish in summer 2015. Josh and Tracey Adams at Adams Literary negotiated the deal for world English rights on behalf of Hothouse Fiction in London.