Julie Strauss-Gabel at Dutton Children's Books has acquired two novels by Tahereh Mafi, author of the Shatter Me series. The first book, Furthermore, marks the author's middle-grade debut; it tells the story of two unique worlds and their unlikely champion: 12-year-old Alice Alexis Queensmeadow. When Alice's father disappeared from Ferenwood he took nothing but a ruler with him, and after almost six years, she embarks on a journey to find him. A publication date has not yet been set; Jodi Reamer of Writers House negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Pam Gruber at Little, Brown has bought Secrets of My Hollywood Life author Jen Calonita's new middle grade series, V.I.P., about a girl who gets to go on tour with her favorite boy band when her mom scores a job as the band's new publicist; it's pitched as Dork Diaries meets One Direction. Publication is scheduled for fall 2015; Dan Mandel at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates did a two-book deal for North American rights.
Stacey Barney at Putnam has acquired a second YA novel from Golden Boy author Tara Sullivan. The Bitter Side of Sweet explores child labor on chocolate plantations in Africa through the story of a boy and his younger brother, modern-day slaves on a chocolate plantation in the Ivory Coast. Publication is slated for winter 2016; Caryn Wiseman at Andrea Brown Literary Agency sold world rights.
Jocelyn Davies at HarperTeen has acquired, at auction, debut author Lucy Keating's Dreamology: A Love Story, an YA novel pitched as Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind meets Jenny Han. In the story, a girl has had vivid, fantastical dreams of the same boy her entire life, only to walk into a new school and discover he is real. Publication is scheduled for winter 2016; Sara Shandler and Joelle Hobeika at Alloy Entertainment did the two-book deal for world English rights.
Michelle Frey at Knopf has bought Sonia Gensler's Ghostlight, a contemporary ghost story about two kids who spend their summer vacation making a scary movie, only to discover the house where they're filming is actually haunted. It's scheduled for fall 2015, by Jennifer Laughran at Andrea Brown Literary brokered the deal.
Jordan Hamessley at Egmont has acquired North American rights to The Ghost of Goldenrod, a middle-grade debut by Jane O'Reilly. It tells of a girl who moves with her father to a mysterious and remote old house, and finds herself caught up in secrets of the past that are surprisingly the key to her own future. Publication is scheduled for spring 2016; Sarah Davies at Greenhouse Literary Agency negotiated the two-book deal.
Alessandra Balzer at HarperCollins imprint Balzer + Bray has bought Hello, My Name Is Octicorn, a previously self-published picture book by Kevin Diller (l.) and Justin Lowe, in a two-book deal. In the story, Octicorn, who is half octopus, half unicorn, looks for a new friend who will accept him just the way he is. It's scheduled for spring 2016; Elena Giovinazzo at Pippin Properties held the auction for North American English-language rights.
Connie Hsu at Roaring Brook Press has acquired world rights at auction to Where's the Party? , the picture book debut by author-illustrator Ruth Chan. Georgie the cat loves his friends and he just can't wait to throw a party for them. But when he tries to invite his friends, they're all too busy... planning a party for Georgie. The book was inspired in part by Chan's own pets; it's due in spring 2016. Rebecca Sherman at Writers House did the two-book deal.
Hannah Buchsbaum at Little Simon has bought two concept board books by Etsy artist Ashley Goldberg (Ashley G). The books feature Ashley's signature style as they explore the concepts of colors and shapes. Publication is planned for fall 2015; Teresa Kietlinski at Prospect Agency negotiated the two-book deal for world rights.
Nancy Inteli at HarperCollins has bought world rights to First Second editor Calista Brill's picture book Tugboat Bill, about a tugboat on the Hudson River, the barge who is his best friend, the sleek tall ships who look down on them, and one kitten in danger. It will be illustrated byZoom Zoom illustrator Tad Carpenter and published in summer 2016. Erin Murphy of Erin Murphy Literary represented Brill; Carpenter represented himself.
Kate Fletcher at Candlewick has bought the third picture book by Two Speckled Eggs author-illustrator Jennifer K. Mann, tentatively titled Pip & Jump. It tells the classic lost and found story of a boy who leaves his stuffed bunny behind at the beach one day. It's slated for 2016 publication; Holly McGhee at Pippin Properties did the deal for world rights.
Lee Wade at Random House's Schwartz & Wade Books has acquired Ged Adamson's Douglas Needs Glasses, on exclusive submission. It's the tale of a dog who refuses to admit he has bad eyesight. Spring 2016 is the pub date; Isabel Atherton at Creative Authors Ltd. sold world rights.
Jessica Garrison at Dial Books for Young Readers has acquired The Sky Is Everywhere author Jandy Nelson's third book, Fall Boys & Dizzy in Paradise. The story follows a trio of siblings whose father disappeared years earlier under mysterious circumstances; their lives are upended by the arrival of an enigmatic girl. Nelson's second novel, I'll Give You the Sun (Dial, Sept.), was optioned for film last week, and The Sky Is Everywhere has also been optioned for film, with Selena Gomez attached to star. The new book is tentatively slated for fall 2017; Holly McGhee at Pippin Properties sold North American rights.
Stacey Barney at Putnam Books for Young Readers has bought a book by Unlocking the Truth, the tween heavy metal band. The book, called Unlocking the Truth, will chronicle the path to success for the band's three members – (from l.) Malcolm Brickhouse (13), Jarad Dawkins (12), and Alec Atkins (13) – from a basement in Brooklyn to opening for Guns N' Roses and an album deal with Sony. Charisse Jones has been signed as writer. Publication is scheduled for summer 2015; Jane Startz of Jane Startz Productions brokered the deal for world rights.
Liz Bicknell at Candlewick has bought world rights to three picture books by poet and Newbery Medalist Nancy Willard. The first book, The Three Mouths of Little Tom Drum, tells the story of a boy who gets more than he wishes for when he steals a piece of pie; it will be illustrated by Kevin Hawkes. The second book, Gum, will be illustrated by Jeff Newman; it follows a boy trying to get the prize out of a gumball machine. The final title, Burroughs and the Birds, tells of the trip that naturalist John Burroughs and his son took to Jamaica in 1902. Tom Drum is set for June 2015, Gum for spring 2017, and Burroughs is not yet scheduled. Jean Naggar and Jennifer Weltz at the Jean V. Naggar Agency brokered the deal.
Regina Griffin at Egmont USA has acquired North American rights to Shawn Thomas Odyssey's Legend Chasers, a middle-grade series about a group of friends who are obsessed with legendary creatures such as the Loch Ness Monster and Sasquatch. On their first adventure, using old photos and their detective skills, they set out to find the Tiger-Wolf of the Sierra Foothills. Publication of book 1 is scheduled for spring 2016; Catherine Drayton at InkWell Management negotiated the two-book deal.
Sara Sargent at Simon Pulse has bought two YA novels in Tempestauthor Julie Cross's new Juniper Cove series, Lay It on the Line andYours to Lose. It's pitched as Friday Night Lights with hockey; the books are set in a small Minnesota town that lives and breathes high-school hockey. The first book will pub in spring 2016, and the second in spring 2017. Nicole Resciniti at the Seymour Agency did the deal for world English rights.
Sarah Shumway at Bloomsbury has bought two YA novels by The Best Night of Your (Pathetic) Life author Tara Altebrando. The first book, The Leaving, is billed as a cross between Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and The Returned; in the story, five kids who were abducted when they were in kindergarten return home as teenagers and have no memory of where they've been, or of the sixth child who was taken with them. It's scheduled for spring 2016; David Dunton at Harvey Klinger negotiated the deal for world rights.
Reka Simonsen of Atheneum has acquired North American rights to the first two books in Judith Rossell's Stella Montgomery Intrigue series, illustrated middle-grade novels set in Victorian England. In book 1, called Withering-by-Sea, an inquisitive 11-year-old orphan witnesses a man hide a package for which he is murdered, plunging her into an adventure. Pub date is set for spring 2016; Jill Corcoran of Jill Corcoran Literary Agency did the deal.
Grace Kendall at Farrar, Straus and Giroux took North American rights at auction to Kate Beasley's middle-grade novel, Gertie. The novel, Beasley's debut, follows a girl who is attempting to be the best fourth grader possible, in order to show her distant mother that she doesn't need her. Gertie's scheme hits a roadblock, though, when the daughter of a famous movie director arrives in town. Publication is set for fall 2016; Emily van Beek at Folio Jr. / Folio Literary Management did the two-book, mid-six figure deal.
Emily Easton at Crown Books for Young Readers has bought The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner, a YA novel about growing up in the rural south, as three outcasts try to make it through senior year without letting the small-town culture destroy their creative spirits and sense of self, as well as an additional untitled YA novel. Publication is planned for spring 2016; Charlie Olsen at Inkwell Management did the deal for U.S. rights.
Liesa Abrams at Simon Pulse and Jane Griffiths at Simon & Schuster U.K. have bought worldwide English rights to 33 Minutes author Todd Hasak-Lowy's YA debut, called Me Being Me Is Exactly as Insane as You Being You. The novel, told completely in lists, centers on a teenage boy grappling with his parents' divorce and his older brother leaving for college – who ditches school with a mysterious girl and goes to visit his brother in freak-out mode after a revelation about his family turns his world inside out. Publication is set for spring 2015; Daniel Lazar at Writers House and Angharad Kowal for Writers House U.K. brokered the deal.
Leila Sales at Viking has acquired world rights to Dear Dragon by Josh Funk (l.), to be illustrated by Rodolfo Montalvo. The picture book is about two boys who befriend each other through a writing assignment and learn to look past superficial differences to appreciate the person (or dragon) underneath. Publication is scheduled for winter 2016; Kathleen Rushall of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency represented the author, and Joanna Volpe of New Leaf Literary & Media represented the artist.