Christian Trimmer of Simon & Schuster and Dawn Davis of 37 INK have bought a three-book chapter book series and a picture book by 12-year-old Oscar nominee Quvenzhané Wallis. The chapter books, which will be illustrated by Sharee Miller (center), follow the adventures of third grader Shai Williams, a star-in-the-making who has a flair for the dramatic, both on stage and off. The untitled picture book, illustrated by Vanessa Brantley-Newton (r.), tells the story of a girl who is looking forward to a night out with her mother at a red-carpet event. Publication will begin in January 2017; Esther Newberg of ICM brokered the deal for world rights.
Megan Tingley at Little, Brown has acquiredThe Magic Misfits, an illustrated debut middle-grade series by actor Neil Patrick Harris. Alvina Ling and Rex Ogle will edit the books. Publication is slated for spring 2017; Laura Nolan of Kuhn Projects negotiated the deal for North American rights.
Kristin Rens at HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray has acquired at auction Even the Darkest Stars, a YA fantasy duology by debut author Heather Fawcett. Set in a fictional kingdom reminiscent of Nepal, this is the story of an aspiring teen climber who is enlisted by a legendary explorer to help him climb the kingdom’s deadliest mountain – only to discover that his true mission may threaten her whole world. Publication is scheduled for fall 2017; Brianne Johnson of Writers House did the deal for world English rights.
Nancy Paulsen at Penguin's Nancy Paulsen Books has bought world rights to two new titles from Lynda Mullaly Hunt. A contemporary YA, Out of Order, and a historical middle-grade novel in verse, Hungry for Home, will share Hunt’s previous books’ emphasis on everyday kids facing difficult situations with resilience. The new books are set to release in 2018 and 2019; Erin Murphy at Erin Murphy Literary Agency negotiated the deal.
Wesley Adams at Farrar, Straus and Giroux preempted Keely Hutton's YA debut novelFinding Obeno, based on the life of Richard Ricky Anywar, who, abducted at 13 and forced to fight as a soldier for Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony's Lord's Resistance Army, managed to escape and is now a humanitarian helping to rehabilitate former child soldiers in Uganda. Publication is planned for spring 2017; Soumeya Bendimerad Roberts at Writers House brokered the deal for North American rights.
James Cross Giblin and Dinah Stevenson at Clarion have acquired world rights to the latest ghost story by Mary Downing Hahn. One for Sorrow, Hahn's 33rd novel, is set during the 1918 flu pandemic. In the story, a girl who is disliked at school dies of the flu and returns to haunt Annie, one of the girls who taunted her. The book will publish in spring 2017; the author was unagented.
Catherine Onder at Bloomsbury has preempted Kamilla Benko's debut middle-grade series, The Unicorn Hunt, in which two sisters are thrust from the present day into a world ruled by magic and embroiled in discord. Publication in the U.S. and U.K. is scheduled for fall 2017; Stephen Barbara at InkWell Management did the three-book deal for world English rights on behalf of Benko and Paper Lantern Lit.
Lauri Hornik at Dial has bought Jon Agee's Life on Mars, in which an intrepid explorer finds life on Mars, but on his way back to Earth he discovers that there was even more to the story than what he found. Publication is set for 2017; Holly McGhee at Pippin Properties negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Jill Davis at HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen Books has acquired author-illustrator Michael Slack's Shorty and Clem series in a two-book deal. The series chronicles the adventures of best friends Shorty, a very short dinosaur, and Clem, a very large quail. The first book is planned for publication in winter 2017, and the second in winter 2018; Lori Nowicki at Painted Words brokered the deal for world English rights.
Laura Godwin at Henry Holt has bought world rights to author-illustrator Meghan McCarthy's new picture book, The Fake Army, the story of the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops, a secret unit in the U.S. Army that used tricks and illusion rather than guns and ammunition to help turn the tide of World War II. A publication date has not yet been set; Alexandra Penfold of Upstart Crow Literary negotiated the deal.
Julia Maguire at Knopf has acquired Margaret and the Moon by Dean Robbins, illustrated by graphic novelist Lucy Knisley. It tells the story of Margaret Hamilton, the first woman software engineer whose code was used on the Apollo missions. Publication is slated for summer 2017; Marietta B. Zacker at Nancy Gallt Literary represented the author and Holly Bemiss at Susan Rabiner Literary represented the illustrator in the deal for world rights.
Lynne Polvino at Clarion has bought author Wade Bradford's Mr. Complain Takes the Train, an interactive picture book about a fussy fellow who takes an unusual train ride. Stephan Britt(r.) will illustrate. Publication is scheduled for fall 2018; Abigail Samoun at Red Fox Literary brokered the deal for both author and illustrator for world English rights.
Reka Simonsen at Atheneum has acquired Carole Boston Weatherford's (l.) The Legendary Miss Lena Horne, to be illustrated by Elizabeth Zunon, a celebration of the life, times, and legacy of pioneering African-American entertainer and civil rights activist Lena Horne. Publication is set for spring 2017; Rubin Pfeffer of Rubin Pfeffer Content represented the author and Lori Nowicki of Painted Words represented the artist in the deal for world rights.
Sarah Landis at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has preempted With Malice by Eileen Cook, a YA psychological suspense novel that opens with 18-year-old Jill in a hospital room, leg in a cast, stitches on her face, and a blank canvas where the last six weeks should be. Publication is slated for summer 2016; Barbara Poelle of the Irene Goodman Agency negotiated the six-figure deal for North American rights; U.K. rights were sold in a preempt to Hot Key.
Laura Godwin at Henry Holt has acquired two books written and illustrated by Mike Curato: Flamer, a YA graphic novel about a 14-year-old boy who is bullied at Boy Scout camp, with near-fatal consequences; and the fourth installment of his Little Elliot picture book series. Publication is scheduled for winter 2018 and summer 2019; Brenda Bowen at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates did the deals for world English rights.
Amy Cloud at S&S/Aladdin has bought Graceland Avenue, a debut middle-grade novel by Lindsay Currie. When 12-year-old Tessa's father takes a new job in Chicago, she is forced to leave Florida and her best friend to start seventh grade at a new school. When Tessa discovers her new home is haunted, she must employ the help of some new friends to unravel how Chicago's history plays into the ghost's past. Publication is set for fall 2017; Kathleen Rushall at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency brokered the deal for world rights.
Margaret Raymo at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has preempted Steven B. Frank's dual-voiced Armstrong & Charlie, a 1970s-era desegregation tale about a boy grieving the loss of his older brother, and the unexpected friend who rides in on a long, yellow bus. Publication is planned for spring 2017; Kevin O'Connor of O'Connor Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Kathy Dawson at Penguin's Kathy Dawson Books has acquired, at auction, J.M.M. Nuanez's debut middle grade novel, My Perfect Me. After their mother's suicide, Jack and her little brother Birdie had to move in with their uncle Patrick who's never been very welcoming, and now that Birdie insists on wearing girls' clothing, Jack is afraid it may cost them the only home they've ever really known. Publication is scheduled for summer 2017; Susan Hawk at the Bent Agency did the two-book deal for North American rights.
Sarah Shumway at Bloomsbury and Rebecca McNally at Bloomsbury U.K. have preempted Stephanie Burgis's The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart and a sequel, featuring an impetuous young dragon who is transformed into an equally impetuous 12-year-old girl by means of enchanted hot chocolate. Publication will start in spring 2017; Molly Ker Hawn at the Bent Agency brokered the deal for world English rights.
Anna Bloom at Scholastic has bought four books in a new chapter book series, Pocket Geniuses by Megan E. Bryant, in which a fourth grader accidentally brings to life a set of Heroes of History action figures. All four books will pub in 2017, with the first two released simultaneously in April 2017. Jamie Weiss Chilton at Andrea Brown Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
In another deal for Megan E. Bryant, Celia Lee at Scholastic/Cartwheel has acquired My Snow Globe and My Easter Egg, to be illustrated by Melissa Iwai. The books are slated to publish in 2016 and 2017 respectively. Jamie Weiss Chilton at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented Bryant, and Christina Tugeau at the CATugeau Artist Agency represented Iwai in the two-book deal for world rights.
Sylvie Frank at S&S/Paula Wiseman Books has bought I Have a Balloon by debut author Ariel Bernstein, to be illustrated by Scott Magoon. In the story, Monkey desperately wants Owl's balloon and tries everything possible to get it. Publication is planned for fall 2017; Mary Cummings at Betsy Amster Literary Enterprises represented Bernstein and Rebecca Sherman at Writers House represented Magoon in the deal for world rights.
Andrea Pinkney at Scholastic has acquired, in a five-house auction, author-illustrator Lori Richmond's Bunny's Staycation, about a bunny who unsuccessfully attempts to foil his Mama's business trip, and creates his own adventure instead. Publication is scheduled for 2017; Lori Kilkelly at Rodeen Literary Management brokered the two-book deal for world rights.
Susan Kochan at Putnam has bought world rights to Corey Rosen Schwartz's Twinderella, about Cinderella's less famous twin sister. Deborah Marcero is set to illustrate. Publication is set for 2017; Kendra Marcus at Bookstop Literary Agency represented the author and Danielle Smith at Red Fox Literary represented the illustrator.
Jill Davis at HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen Books has acquired author-illustrator Elise Gravel's I Want a Monster. When Winnie convinces her Dad to get her a pet monster, she learns that taking care of a baby monster is nothing like she expected. Publication is slated for March 2016; Lori Nowicki at Painted Words negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Carol Hinz at Millbrook Press has bought world rights to It's Not Black and White, by Irene Latham and Charles Waters, illustrated by Sean Qualls and Selina Alko. In this collection of poems, a white woman and a black man have a conversation, writing about everyday elements from their childhoods – including family dinners, sports, church, and toys. It's scheduled for fall 2017; Rosemary Stimola of Stimola Literary Studio represented the co-authors, and Rebecca Sherman of Writers House represented the co-illustrators.