This season brings big anniversaries for several children’s books: from YA novels that have remained in print for almost a century, to picture books that have inspired legions of fans for decades. In response to these milestones, publishers are celebrating in myriad ways, including repackaged, redesigned editions, and revitalized retellings of these enduring stories. Read on for new ways to reconnect with old favorites.
Johnny Tremain 75th Anniversary Edition
First published in 1943, the historical fiction bestseller and Newbery Medal winner tells the story of a boy caught up in the American Revolution, and is now refreshed with a new cover and illustrated foreword from graphic novelist Nathan Hale.
The Kissing Hand: 25th Anniversary Edition
Penn’s story of Chester the Raccoon turns 25 this fall; the picture book has become a classic bibliotherapy selection for children reticent to start school. The new edition features an additional booklet, “Letters to Chester,” featuring fans’ letters to the raccoon, as well as stickers.
The Knife of Never Letting Go
Ten years after it was originally published, the opener to Ness’s dystopian Chaos Walking trilogy is reissued in a new hardcover edition. The film adaptation of the book hits theaters March 2019.
Go Away, Big Green Monster!
Caldecott Medalist Emberley’s interactive picture book has helped kids sleep since it was first published 25 years ago. The book now boasts over one million copies in print, and it remains Little, Brown’s fourth bestselling backlist title, nearing Twilight. The publisher says “Happy 25th!” with a reprint of the original.
Cashore’s bestselling fantasy debut takes place in a land of seven kingdoms, where people with special talents, called Gracelings, are identified by their eyes, and 18-year-old Katsa was identified at a young age for her talent for killing. Cashore followed up her story with two companion novels, Fire and Bitterblue; Graceling’s 10th-anniversary edition features reimagined cover art, a new afterword, and a Q&A with the author.
The Graveyard Book
The 2009 Newbery winner and spooky retelling of “The Jungle” from Kipling’s The Jungle Book gets a new 10th-anniversary edition including a foreword by Margaret Atwood, and extras including Gaiman’s medal acceptance speech, answers to fan questions, early versions of McKean’s art, and more.
For the 25th anniversary of Lowry’s Newbery winner, Houghton is reissuing the book in a newly designed hardcover edition with additional material. Lowry contributes a new afterword, as well as her medal acceptance speech. The dystopian novel has been adapted into a film, and next year a graphic novel adaptation of the book will be published.
The Popcorn Book
For the 40th anniversary of dePaola’s picture book about two brothers making the popular snack, updated information and illustrations are included.
The Skin I’m In
Originally published in 1998, Flake’s novel about a teen bullied at school because of her race is reissued for its 20th anniversary with a new cover and a new foreword by Jason Reynolds.
The Little Prince: 75th Anniversary Edition
The international bestseller about a boy who sees the world with a unique perspective is beloved by children and adults, and for its 75th year in print, HMH reissues it in a redesigned, deluxe hardcover edition including bonus material about the making of the book, photos, and early reviews.
The Hunger Games:
The dystopian YA novel that launched a sensation—a successful trilogy of books and films—now celebrates its 10th anniversary. The special edition includes an interview with Collins, material about how she wrote the series, and a conversation between the author and the late Walter Dean Myers that centers on writing about war.
My Family Plays Music
For its 15th year in print, the Coretta Scott King New Talent Award winner is reprinted, celebrating a multi-talented and musical family. The book includes back matter about music genres, instruments, and improvisation.
A Child’s Calendar:
20th Anniversary Edition
The collaboration between Updike, Pulitzer Prize-winner and acclaimed writer for adults, and Caldecott Medalist Hyman features poems and illustrations carrying a multiracial family throughout the year, and is reissued in a hardcover edition for its 20th year in print.
Paddington at St. Paul’s
The 60th anniversary of the first book featuring the teddy bear from darkest Peru, who finds himself in England, heralds what Harper deems the last book by Michael Bond, a new picture book featuring Paddington in an adventure at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London.
Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy:
The American classic of children’s literature, Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2018. As testament to the novel’s perennial appeal, Little, Brown releases a graphic novel retelling of the story set in contemporary New York City.