Fforde Goes to the Kiddies at HMH
Harcourt Children's Books has acquired U.S. rights to British author Jasper Fforde's first children's book, The Last Dragon Slayer, as well as two other titles in what's to be a planned series. Jeannette Larson brokered the three-book deal with Janklow & Nesbit U.K. agent Claire Paterson. Harcourt Children's is looking to publish The Last Dragon Slayer, which is now out in the U.K., in 2012. In the middle-grade fantasy, Fforde (The Eyre Affair) follows a 15-year-old who runs a supernatural employment agency.
Brown's Back with Arthur at LBBYR
Erin Stein at Little, Brown Books for Young Readers bought U.S. and Canadian rights to Marc Brown's new picture book, Arthur Turns Green. The book, which LBBYR is planning for April 2011, will be the author's first title featuring the titular aardvark in nearly a decade, and it will be released during a year-long celebration the publisher is mounting for the character's 35th birthday. LBBYR will be publishing repackaged versions of a number of popular Arthur titles (as well as those featuring Arthur's sister, D.W.); according to the publisher there are more than 60 million Arthur books in print. Brown closed the deal without an agent.
Sourcebooks Gets 'Admitted'
Agent Sandra Dijkstra sold world rights to Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz's Admission Possible: Getting into the College of Your Choice, to Peter Lynch at Sourcebooks. Shaevitz founded and directs an admissions counseling business called Admission Possible and has also written a number of books, including The Confident Woman (Harmony). In this book she walks students through the admissions process, detailing what they should do starting their freshman year of high school through to their senior year. The agency said the book is particularly easy to use and will be illustrated and printed in four-color.
Citadel Goes Ancestral
Michaela Hamilton, editor-in-chief at Kensington's Citadel Press, bought world rights to genealogist Megan Smolenyak's Our Roots Are Showing. Smolenyak, who was the chief family historian at ancestry.com, was represented by agent Linda Konner. In the book Smolenyak reveals ancestry information about a host of celebrities and public figures ranging from President Obama to Britney Spears, as well as her "real-life adventures as a history detective and ‘ancestor rescuer,'" per the publisher.
Charles Spicer at St. Martin's Press took U.S. and Canadian rights to Stephane Kirkland's Paris Reborn. Agent William Clark represented Kirkland in the deal, and the book, which has the lengthy subtitle The Extraordinary Story of the Rebuilding of Paris into the Modern, Functional and Beautiful Capital of the French Second Empire, chronicles the city's evolution over 22 years, starting in 1848 with a campaign by Napoleon III. As Clark put it, the book is "the first popular account in English... of one of the most comprehensive urban transformations in history." Kirkland, a French-American, participated in the redesign of the Champs-Elysées.
Europa Editions' Kent Carroll bought U.S. and Canadian rights to Jesse Browner's Everything Happens Today from agent Gail Hochman. Set in the West Village, the novel unfolds over the course of a single Saturday in the life of a 17-year-old who's just lost his virginity; it's scheduled for a fall 2011 publication. Browner has written three other novels (including 2007's The Uncertain Hour, from Bloomsbury) and one work of nonfiction.