Just before this week's International Christian Retail Show in Orlando, Fla., B&H Publishing Group announced the launch of B&H Kids, a new children’s imprint. The first titles, which will release this fall, include two movie tie-ins: Firebird by Brent McCorkle and Amy Parker (Oct.), a story featured in the forthcoming film Unconditional; and Courageous Teens, by Michael Catt and Amy Parker (Sept.), is the latest in an array of products based on the 2011 film Courageous. Other titles inspired by the movie include The Resolution for Men and The Resolution for Women, which have charted on the New York Times Advice & Misc. list since they released in 2011.
Also being published this fall by B&H Kids are the Read-to-Me Toddlers Bible (available in English and Spanish with associated apps; Sept.) and The 365 Day Children’s Bible Storybook (Dec.). Several complete Bibles for kids featuring what the publisher calls “a unique range of classic and modern designs” will be published in winter 2013.
Heading B&H Kids is lead acquisitions editor Dan Lynch, who was previously at Word Records and Tommy Nelson, the children’s imprint of Thomas Nelson. V-p of marketing will be Mary Katharine Hunt, formerly a director for LifeWay Kids (which develops church curriculum for children), a division of Lifeway Christian Resources, which also includes the Lifeway bookstore chain and B&H Publishing. All are owned by the Southern Baptist denomination. Other B&H Kids staffers include acquisitions editor Dawn Woods, formerly of Thomas Nelson, and marketing strategist Shannon Kozee, who most recently was a marketing manager at Big Idea, the parent company of Veggie Tales.
At ICRS, Lynch told PW the decision to create B&H Kids was “both missional and business based. We believe in the need to reach kids at a very young age with the message of the Gospel, as well as to provide materials that empower parents and other adults with children in their lives.” The imprint will publish primarily for the 4-8 and 8-12 age groups, but will also publish some titles for tweens and teens, with 20 titles per year planned. “All will have a digital component, and we have some exciting digital ideas coming,” Lynch said. While B&H had previously published some children’s titles, Lynch said, as a business decision, B&H sees entering the category in a focused way as “a growth opportunity.”
B&H Publishing bestsellers include The Love Dare, which debuted at #6 on the PW Trade Paperback list and charted for 10 weeks; and The Vow: The True Events That Inspired the Movie, which spent 17 weeks on the PW list. Both books reached #1 on the New York Times lists.