Ben Rosenthal at HarperCollins/Tegen has acquired two books by award-winning novelist Tiffany D. Jackson. Smoke, pitched as Get Out meets The Haunting of Hill House, is about a girl and her blended family who move into a newly renovated, picture-perfect home in a dilapidated Midwestern city and are haunted by what she thinks are ghosts, but might be far worse; and The Weight of Blood is a remix of Stephen King's Carrie set at a school's first integrated prom. Publication of Smoke is set for fall 2021; Natalie Lakosil at Bradford Literary Agency did the deal for world English rights.
Liza Kaplan at Philomel has bought, in a preempt, in a two-book deal, The Memory House by debut author Stacy Stokes. Pitched as Bone Gap meets Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, this speculative YA novel tells the story of a girl from a small Texas town whose family has been erasing people's heartaches and tragic memories for decades, and the boy who makes her question her family's legacy—as well as her role within it. Publication is slated for spring 2022; Joanna MacKenzie at Nelson Literary Agency brokered the deal for world English rights.
Jessica Anderson at Macmillan/Ottaviano has acquired North American rights to two YA novels by Echo Brown (Black Girl Unlimited). Anchored in magical realism, The Chosen One is a personal account of a first-generation African-American student's first year at Dartmouth College. The first book is scheduled for 2022, and a second book is set for 2023; Janine Kamouh at WME negotiated the deal.
Naomi Krueger at Beaming Books has bought Still Stace: My Gay Christian Coming of Age Story by author-illustrator Stacey Chomiak. The YA illustrated memoir is about Chomiak’s teenage years of wrestling with her gay Christian identity, trying to become “ex-gay,” and eventually finding peace. Publication is planned for spring 2021; Claire Draper at the Bent Agency represented the author for world English rights.
Mallory Kass at Scholastic has acquired North American rights to Burt Award for Caribbean Literature Finalist Shakirah Bourne's Josephine vs. the Sea Spirit. This middle grade novel features cricket-playing Jo, who discovers that her father's new girlfriend is a powerful and vengeful sea creature and has to convince everyone of the woman's true identity before she loses her dad forever. Publication is slated for spring 2021; Marietta Zacker at Gallt & Zacker Literary Agency brokered the deal.
Andrew Arnold at HarperAlley has bought at auction, in a two-book deal, world rights to Jarad Greene's middle grade graphic novel, A-Okay, a semi-autobiographical story featuring Jay, a 13-year-old with severe bouts of acne who's battling his skin, the side effects of a potent acne prescription, and his understanding of being ace, all while trying to survive eighth grade. Publication is slated for fall 2021, and an untitled second book is set for winter 2023; Kelly Sonnack at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author-illustrator.
Wendy Loggia at Delacorte has bought, at auction, in a two-book deal, world English rights to Mine, Delilah S. Dawson's debut middle grade horror novel. Twelve-year-old Lily moves to a creepy old house in a Florida swamp and finds out that the house isn't empty: it's packed full of the previous occupants' trash, keepsakes, and, Lily begins to suspect, maybe even their ghosts. Publication is planned for fall 2021. Stacia Decker at Dunow Carlson & Lerner handled the deal.
Sally Morgridge at Holiday House has acquired, in a two-book deal, a middle grade graphic novel horror series by Mark Fearing. Each anthology takes place in the same spooky small town, where kids disappear on playground slides, Cub Scout leaders don't return from overnight camps, and detention seems to never end. The first book, called Feral, is scheduled for fall 2022; Sean McCarthy at Sean McCarthy Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Jonathan Westmark at Albert Whitman has acquired world rights to Amy Noelle Parks's Summer of Brave, a middle grade novel that touches upon divorcing parents, academic pressure, the #MeToo movement, and first crushes. If Lilla finds the courage to say out loud what she really wants, her whole life might crash down around her, and she doesn't need that. Except maybe she does. Publication is slated for March 2021; Elizabeth Bennett at Transatlantic Agency brokered the deal.
Jen Newens at West Margin has bought world English rights to Bridge to Sharktooth Island, first in the Challenge Island chapter book series by Joel Ross (The Fog Diver) and educator Sharon Duke Estroff, which pairs magical perils with real-world engineering solutions. Publication is set for fall 2021; Caitlin Blasdell at Liza Dawson Associates and Anna Olswanger at Olswanger Literary co-represented the authors.
Joy Bean at Boyds Mills & Kane has acquired world rights to Amy Huntington's Lots of Doggies Here, a picture book about a father and toddler who find the perfect addition to their family at the animal shelter. Publication is scheduled for fall 2021; Erzsi Deak at Hen&ink represented the author-illustrator.
Donna Bray at HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray has bought world rights to Anne Wynter's Nell Plants a Tree. The picture book revolves around a pecan tree that Nell—a grandmother in the story—plants as a child, tracing its lifespan from a seed to a full-grown tree that sparks joy in her grandchildren. Daniel Miyares will illustrate. Publication is planned for winter 2023; Steven Malk at Writers House represented the author, and Studio Goodwin Sturges represented the illustrator.
Julia McCarthy at Atheneum has acquired world rights to Mardi Gras Almost Didn't Come This Year by Kathy Z. Price. The picture book tells the story of a family coping with the loss of their home following Hurricane Katrina, and their journey to once again find joy and music at Mardi Gras. Carl Joe Williams will illustrate. Publication is slated for spring 2021; the author and the illustrator represented themselves.
Chris Myers and Michelle Frey at Random House/Make Me a World have bought world rights to Snow Angel, Sand Angel by Lois-Ann Yamanaka (l.), illustrated by Ashley Lukashevsky. The book features a Japanese-American girl from Hawai'i who has never seen snow in real life. She craves the typical experiences of a snowy winter, until a special family outing reminds her of the unique delights of her home. The book is set for fall 2021; Jennifer Lyons at Jennifer Lyons Agency represented the author, and Wendi Gu at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates represented the illustrator.
Carolyn Yoder at Calkins Creek has acquired world rights to Everywhere Beauty Is Harlem by Gary Golio (JIMI: Sounds Like a Rainbow) (l.), illustrated by Caldecott Honor artist E.B. Lewis. The story brings to life the work of acclaimed African-American photographer Roy DeCarava, whose images portrayed Harlem's residents with great humanity. Publication is projected for spring 2024; Edward Necarsulmer IV at Dunow, Carlson, and Lerner represented the author, and Jeff Dwyer at Dwyer-O'Grady represented the illustrator.
Karen Greenberg at Knopf has bought world rights to How to Hear the Universe, a picture book biography of Gabriela Gonzalez, written by Patricia Valdez (l.), illustrated by Sara Palacios. The book follows Gabriela's journey to discover the existence of gravitational waves in space, which Albert Einstein first theorized a century ago. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022; Alyssa Eisner Henkin at Trident Media represented the author, and Minju Chang at Bookstop Literary represented the illustrator.
Emma Ledbetter at Abrams has acquired world rights to How Lucille Ball Did It All, from the team behind Pocket Full of Colors, co-authors Amy Guglielmo (l.) and Jacqueline Tourville (c.), and illustrator Brigette Barrager (r.). The picture book biography celebrates the plucky, determined, pioneering queen of comedy whom everyone loves: Lucy. The book is slated for spring 2022; Stephen Barbara at Inkwell represented the authors, and Kirsten Hall at Catbird Productions represented the illustrator.
Natashya Wilson at Inkyard Press has acquired, at auction, world English rights to Kneel by debut author Candace Buford. Russell Boudreaux is a black football player who has spent his entire life working toward a singular goal: to be recruited by a Division I football program, and eventually make his way to the NFL, until a series of racial injustices causes Russell to question the price of staying silent. Publication is scheduled for fall 2021; Viana Siniscalchi, Joelle Hobeika, and Josh Bank at Alloy Entertainment handled the deal, and Carrie Pestritto at Laura Dail Literary Agency represented the author.
Krista Marino at Delacorte has bought North American rights, in a two-book deal, to Unfollowed by Kate Williams, pitched as And Then There Were None for Gen-Zers, and a third book in the Babysitters Coven series. Things get dark in Unfollowed when a group of online influencers are invited to an exclusive island music festival, only to discover themselves at the center of a sinister game of survival. Publication is set for fall 2022 and fall 2021, respectively; Kerry Sparks at Levine, Greenberg, Rostan Literary Agency brokered the deal.
Maggie Lehrman at Amulet has acquired Anna Priemaza's speculative YA novel One Minute There. When people she loves—and all memory of them—start disappearing from teenager Vera's life, leaving behind only a haunting sorrow, she and her best friend set out to solve a mystery they can't remember. Publication is planned for fall 2021; Lauren Abramo at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret negotiated the deal for world rights.
Laura Schreiber at Little, Brown/Patterson has bought, in an exclusive submission, world English rights to It Ends in Fire by Andrew Shvarts (Royal Bastards series). Pitched as “Red Rising at Evil Hogwarts,” the YA fantasy features 16-year-old rebel Alka, who must infiltrate the prestigious Blackwater Academy of Magic to destroy it from within. Publication is slated for summer 2021; Sara Crowe at Pippin Properties handled the deal.
Reka Simonsen at Atheneum has acquired, in a preempt, world rights to Regina M. Hansen's debut YA novel The Sea Tithe. The romantic fantasy, set on Prince Edward Island, features 15-year-old apprentice fiddle player Beet MacNeill, the handsome newcomer who catches her eye, and their best friend, who join forces to save her baby cousin from a supernatural menace that has been preying upon their town for centuries. Publication is scheduled for summer 2021; David Dunton at the Harvey Klinger Agency brokered the deal.
Sarah Shumway at Bloomsbury and Ellen Holgate at Bloomsbury U.K. have bought, in a six-figure deal, Stephanie Burgis's new middle-grade novel, The Raven Heir, plus a sequel. The story is about a set of triplets, two warring dynasties, and a broken crown waiting for its rightful owner. Publication will start in February 2021; Molly Ker Hawn at the Bent Agency brokered the deal for world rights.
Alyson Heller at Aladdin has acquired, at auction, debut middle grade author Jenna Yoon's Lia Park and the Missing Jewel. Pitched as Harriet the Spy meets Race to the Sun, the Korean mythology-inspired contemporary fantasy follows a 12-year-old who is a part of a magical spy organization and must use her skills as she chases clues with her best friend to rescue her parents from an evil diviner spirit. Publication is scheduled for summer 2022; Penny Moore and Erin Files at Aevitas Creative Management did the two-book deal for North American rights.
Charlie Ilgunas at Little Bee/Yellow Jacket has bought North American rights to writer Phu Vuong and illustrator Isa Enriquez's graphic novel Blackblood. In a world where magic is outlawed, a young mage traverses the Kingdom of Allia to rescue his sister. Publication is set for fall 2021; Mark Gottlieb at Trident Media Group negotiated the deal.
Brian Geffen at Holt has acquired, in an exclusive submission, Surviving the Wild by author-illustrator Remy Lai (Pie in the Sky), in a three-book deal. Inspired by true events, this early reader graphic novel series comprises stories of animals heroically escaping dangerous situations that have arisen due to man-made environmental changes, beginning with Bima the Elephant. Publication for the first book is planned for 2022; Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret brokered the deal for world rights.
Kaylan Adair at Candlewick has bought Bob Shea's I Am a Baby, a picture book about the joys of new parenthood, from a pleased but indefatigable baby's perspective. Publication is slated for spring 2022; Steven Malk at Writers House represented the author-illustrator in the deal for world rights.
Reka Simonsen at Atheneum has acquired author-illustrator Toni Yuly's picture book, Some Questions About Trees. The meditative collection of questions about trees is rooted in wonder and awe, inspired by questions often asked by children. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022; Wendi Gu at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates negotiated the deal for world rights.
Kristen Mohn at Capstone has bought world rights to Hello, Mandarin Duck!, the third picture book by Caldecott Honoree Bao Phi (l.) (A Different Pond). During a May Day parade, some children meet a duck who's new to the neighborhood, and they work together to help the duck find a new home in the pond. Celebrating teamwork, problem-solving, inclusivity, and bilingualism, the story also gently addresses fears about deportation. Debut picture book artist Dion MBD will illustrate. Publication is set for spring 2021; the author represented himself in the deal, and Naima Danawi of Illozoo represented the illustrator.
Carter Hasegawa and Katie Cunningham at Candlewick have acquired world rights to Time, written by Monique James-Duncan (l.), about two rambunctious African-American children and their stay-at-home mother. Ebony Glenn will illustrate. Publication is planned for spring 2022; Charlotte Sheedy at Charlotte Sheedy Literary Agency represented the author, and Anne Moore Armstrong at the Bright Agency represented the artist.
Caitlyn Dlouhy has bought, for her eponymous imprint at Atheneum, world rights to Jazz for Lunch by Jarrett Dapier, illustrated by Eugenia Mello. The picture book is about the joys of food and jazz, and how the world is just a little bit better when you've embraced both. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Elena Giovinazzo at Pippin Properties represented the author and the illustrator in the deal.
Michelle Frey at Knopf has acquired world rights to Mystery of the Monarchs, written by Golden Kite Award Winner for nonfiction Barb Rosenstock (l.) and illustrated by Erika Meza. The story centers on entomologist Fred Urquhart, who was obsessed with bugs since childhood and who, along with his wife Norah plus a team of citizen scientists, uncovered one of nature's biggest secrets when they discovered where monarch butterflies migrate each fall. Publication is set for summer 2022; Rosemary Stimola at Stimola Literary Studio represented the author, and Claire Cartey at Holroyde Cartey Limited represented the illustrator.
Karen Greenberg at Knopf has bought, at auction, world rights to Tia Fortuna's New Home, written by Pura Belpré Award-winning author Ruth Behar (l.) and illustrated by Devon Holzwarth. The picture book follows a Sephardic Jewish girl and her great-aunt, who is leaving her beloved Miami home to begin a new chapter of her life. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022; Alyssa Eisner Henkin at Trident Media represented the author, and Nicole Tugeau at Tugeau 2 represented the illustrator.