On the 10th anniversary of Candlewick Press’s publication of the first book in the bestselling Ology series, developed by the Templar Company in the U.K., the Somerville, Mass.-based publisher announced that it will be the U.S. publisher of a new imprint also from Templar, called Big Picture Press, which will debut this fall.
The BPP list, which was conceived as an alternative to digital publishing, will launch with four illustrated hardcovers and two paperbacks. The lead title, The Goods: Volume 1, was created in collaboration with Brian McMullen and McSweeney’s and brings together games, puzzles, and activities from well-known children’s authors and illustrators, including Mo Willems, Jon Klassen, and Jon Scieszka. Other titles range from a collection of stories by Aleksandra Mizielinskia and Daniel Mizielinski, Welcome to Mamoko, and their coffee-table book on Maps to Keith Haring’s Nina’s Book of Little Things, originally created by Haring for the daughter of a friend on her seventh birthday.
The BPP list of six books a season, or 12 titles per year, comes from the U.K., under the leadership of Templar publisher Rachel Williams. Katie Cunningham at Candlewick will serve as the U.S. editor for BPP, and the books will pass through Candlewick’s copyediting and marketing departments, among others. “Largely these projects come to us as beautiful, fully formed artifacts,” says Cunningham. “Occasionally, Candlewick’s specific editorial needs and desires can impact the finished products in significant ways. The level of collaboration is only possible because of the degree to which both BPP and Candlewick value good book making over individual pride of vision.”
“It is very rare to see a new list spring into life with so much coherence, vitality, and sheer reason for being,” says Karen Lotz, president and publisher of Candlewick and managing director of the Walker Books Group. “We look forward to bringing these exceptionally beautiful books, full of tactile surprises and visual inspiration, to U.S. art and illustration lovers of all ages.” Commenting on the press’s longtime partnership with Templar, which began before it became a member of the Bonnier Publishing Group, she notes that over the years “[it] has taken different forms to suit the changing nature of the list and marketplace in the U.S. The success springs from a similar vision about what quality publishing for children means.”