Natashya Wilson at Inkyard Press has acquired All Signs Point to Yes, a YA anthology of love stories for each of the star signs that will showcase BIPOC characters and celebrate the myriad facets of love, from meet-cutes to the lesser-explored love expressed by aromantic people, edited by author Candice Montgomery (l.), cara davis-araux (c.), and Adrianne Russell (r.), featuring 12 bestselling and award-winning BIPOC authors. Publication is planned for winter 2022; Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret negotiated the deal for world rights.
Vicki Lame at Wednesday Books has bought, in a six-figure preempt, Emily Thiede's debut YA fantasy, The Last Finestra, in which a divine savior, "blessed" with the power to magnify a partner's magic, kills every suitor she touches. Facing assassination herself, she hires a cynical outcast marked as a killer to become her personal guard, but will he help her master her gift or destroy her once and for all? Publication is set for summer 2022, with a second book to follow in summer 2023; Chelsea Eberly at Greenhouse Literary did the two-book deal for North American rights.
Kiara Valdez at First Second has acquired, in a 10-house auction, Hannah Blumenreich's graphic novel Full-Court Crush and a second untitled YA graphic novel. Full-Court Crush is about Marcy, a basketball player whose team is being shut down, and her bookish girlfriend Althea, who is struggling alone with her chronically depressed mother. Together, they learn how to navigate the troubles of life and 11th grade. Publication is scheduled for 2023; Linda Camacho at Gallt & Zacker Literary Agency brokered the deal for North American rights.
Polo Orozco at Random House has bought Nate Plus One by Kevin van Whye (Date Me, Bryson Keller). High school senior Nate Hargreaves is not looking forward to his wealthy aunt's wedding retreat in South Africa—until his crush Jai Patel, an indie rock musician, volunteers to be his plus-one. This gay love story, pitched as What if It's Us meets Crazy Rich Asians, is set in the author's home country of South Africa. Publication is slated for spring 2022; Robert Guinsler at Sterling Lord Literistic negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Jennifer Ung at Simon Pulse has acquired Aaron H. Aceves' YA debut, This Is Why They Hate Us. The novel follows Enrique, a Latino teen from East L.A., who is determined to get over his crush on his best friend by summer's end and winds up discovering heartfelt truths about friendship, family, and himself. Publication is planned for spring 2022; Tina Dubois at ICM Partners handled the deal for North American rights.
Jenny Blenk at Dark Horse has bought world rights to Renegade Rule by Ben Kahn (l.) and Rachel Silverstein (c.), illustrated by Sam Beck (r.). Four queer female friends have beaten the odds to land themselves in the national championships for Renegade Rule, one of the hottest virtual reality games. But they're in for competition fiercer than they ever imagined, and must overcome self-doubt, infighting, romantic distraction, and a slew of other world-class teams if they hope to become champions. Publication is set for spring 2021; Moe Ferrara at BookEnds brokered the deal.
Ashley Hearn at Page Street has acquired The Lost Girls, a paranormal YA romance by Sonia Hartl (Have a Little Faith in Me). When the vampire who turned Holly into the undead in 1987 (leaving her as a 16-year-old with badly crimped hair for all eternity) breaks up with her, she's approached by two girls he also claimed to love, turned, then ditched. But their plan to kill him before he can strike again grows complicated when Holly starts to fall for the mortal girl they're trying to protect. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Rebecca Podos at Rees Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Michelle Nagler at Random House has bought bestselling author Jennifer L. Holm's new novel The Lion of Mars. The book follows 11-year-old Bell, who lives in the American Settlement on Mars with six adults, four kids, and one cat. When a routine supply ship brings unexpected danger to Bell's isolated home, he must seek help from the foreign settlements, and in doing so discovers that friendship is more powerful than fear. Publication is scheduled for spring 2021; Jill Grinberg at Jill Grinberg Literary Management brokered the deal for North American rights.
Holly West at Feiwel and Friends has acquired world rights to Anna Crowley Redding's middle-grade nonfiction Black Hole Chasers, following a team of scientists who forge an unprecedented global collaboration to see a black hole for the first time in history. Exclusive access and reporting showcase how the team's persistence, problem-solving, and tolerance for repeated failure led to one of the biggest scientific breakthroughs of our time. Publication is planned for spring 2021; Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency did the deal for world rights.
Renee Kelly at Penguin Workshop has bought author-illustrator Rick Chrustowski's Dino-Zombies!, in which a creepy crew of dino-zombies take to the streets to chomp all the Halloween treats. Publication is set for summer 2021; Teresa Kietlinski at Bookmark Literary negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Jennifer Greene at Clarion has acquired, at auction, Jonathan McKee's author-illustrator debut, Oh Look, A Cake!, a picture book about a sloth, a lemur, and a giant cake, and what happens when you don't share. Publication is scheduled for spring 2021; Lindsay Auld at Writers House did the two-book deal for world rights.
Megan Ilnitzki at HarperCollins has bought, in a preempt, world rights for debut author-illustrator Breanna Carzoo's picture book Lou, about a fire hydrant who has grown weary of being the neighborhood toilet but when a fire breaks out nearby, he discovers he might be meant for more. Publication is slated for summer 2022; Adria Goetz at Martin Literary Management brokered the two-book deal.
Anne Schwartz at Random House/Schwartz has acquired world rights to The Water Lady: How Darlene Arviso Helps a Thirsty Navajo Nation by Alice McGinty (The Girl Who Named Pluto and A Story for Small Bear) and illustrated by Navajo artist Shonto Begay. The picture book tells the true story of a Navajo woman who brings water to her people desperately in need of it, including a boy named Cody and his family. Publication is planned for spring 2021; Steven Chudney at the Chudney Agency represented the author, and the illustrator represented himself.
Liza Kaplan at Philomel has bought world rights to Oceans of Love, written by Janet Lawler (l.). In this mother's love poem, Minnow searches for the perfect school for her little swimmers, and Barnacle assures her young that "it's quite all right to cling." Holly Clifton-Brown will illustrate; publication is set for 2022. Anne Moore Armstrong at the Bright Agency represented the author, and Nicole Tugeau at T2 Agency represented the illustrator.
Ann Kelley at Random House Studio has acquired world rights to Kristen Schroeder's (l.) So Much Snow, a picture book about animals caught—literally up to their ears and antlers—in a snowstorm. Sarah Jacoby will illustrate; publication is scheduled for fall 2022. Christa Heschke at McIntosh & Otis represented the author, and Steven Malk at Writers House represented the illustrator.
Barbara Herndon at HarperCollins has bought world rights to Literary Critters and a second book in the Pugtato series by Sophie Corrigan. Literary Critters introduces literary icons like William Shakesbear, J.K. Owling, Bark Twain, and Crane Austen, who share their secrets with readers about the amazing things one can find in books. Pugtato Babysits the Snouts finds the spud in over his head as he takes on the task of babysitting the rambunctious Brussels Snouts. Publication is slated for February 2022 and August 2021, respectively; Mark Gottlieb at Trident Media Group represented the author.
Nicole Sclama at HMH has acquired, at auction, Akshaya Raman's epic YA fantasy debut, The Ivory Key, first in a duology. Set in an Indian-inspired world where magic is a physical resource, four estranged royal siblings must find a new source of magic to save their country. Publication is planned for fall 2021; Hillary Jacobson at ICM Partners brokered the two-book deal for North American rights.
Arianne Lewin at Putnam has acquired, in a preempt, in a two-book deal, debut author Leslie Vedder's The Bone Spindle, an #OwnVoices LGBTQ YA fantasy pitched as a gender-flipped Sleeping Beauty meets Indiana Jones, in which a cursed treasure hunter and an axe-wielding huntswoman must team up to rescue the prince sleeping in the Forest of Thorns. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022; Carrie Hannigan and Ellen Goff at HG Literary did the deal for North American rights.
Britny Brooks at Running Press has bought Fools in Love, a romance anthology co-edited by Rebecca Podos (l.) and Ashley Herring Blake, offering new takes on classic romance tropes in multiple genres, from Rebecca Barrow, Gloria Chao, Sara Farizan, Claire Kann, Hannah Moskowitz, Natasha Ngan, Lilliam Rivera, Laura Silverman, Amy Spalding, Rebecca Kim Wells, Julian Winters, and more. Publication is set for December 2021; Eric Smith at P.S. Literary negotiated the deal for world rights.
Nicole Ellul at Simon Pulse has bought Jenn Bennett's (Alex Approximately and Starry Eyes) new YA romance, Always June. During a lake vacation, a teenage girl falls for a boy who mistakenly believes she's the wealthy daughter of a reclusive California record producer—not the daughter of his chauffeur. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Laura Bradford at Bradford Literary Agency brokered the two-book deal for North American rights.
Alessandra Balzer at HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray has acquired Mapmaker, a middle-grade fantasy by Lisa Moore Ramée (A Good Kind of Trouble), and a second untitled middle grade novel. Walt is a Mapmaker, one of just a few in the universe who can draw maps that come to life. He must pit his own powers against another malevolent Mapmaker who has the power to destroy any world—including our own. Publication is planned for spring 2022; Brenda Bowen at the Book Group handled the two-book deal for world English rights.
Claire Stetzer at Bloomsbury has bought, at auction, J. Elle's middle grade debut, A Taste of Magic. The first of two books set at the Park Row Magic Academy stars 12-year-old Kyana, a black girl who enrolls in an inner-city magical academy hidden in the back of a beauty shop and must fight to keep it open after redistricting and gentrification threaten to close it down. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022; Natalie Lakosil at Bradford Literary Agency negotiated the two-book deal for world English rights.
Laura Godwin at Macmillan/Godwin has acquired How to Be Brave, a middle grade debut by blogger and podcaster Daisy May Johnson. Set in a boarding school in the U.K.—the same one Calla's mother attended when she was orphaned years ago—Calla and her friends must outwit the new headmistress to save her mother (whose special duck expedition isn't what it seems) in the Amazon. Publication is set for fall 2021. Allison Hellegers at Stimola Literary Studio did the deal for North American rights on behalf of Bryony Woods at DKW in the U.K.; U.K. rights went to Sarah Odedina at Pushkin Press.
Nikki Garcia and Andrea Colvin at Little, Brown has bought, in an exclusive submission, Sharee Miller's debut middle-grade graphic novel Curlfriends, in a planned four-book series. The series follows four black girls from different backgrounds as they meet, face challenges, and learn lessons about friendship, love, and growing up. Publication of book one is slated for fall 2022; Monica Odom at Odom Media Management brokered the deal for world rights.
Margaret Ferguson at Holiday House has acquired world rights to Worser, a middle-grade novel by Jennifer Ziegler, author of How Not to Be Popular and Revenge of the Flower Girls. Worser centers a socially awkward, word-loving boy whose life is upended by his single mother's recent stroke, but finds glimmers of hope when it turns out there are friends to be found who also share his love of wordplay. Publication is planned for spring 2022; Erin Murphy at Erin Murphy Literary Agency negotiated the deal.
Karen Nagel at Aladdin has bought, in an exclusive submission, the first four books of a chapter book series, Night Frights, by Joe McGee (Junior Monster Scouts). The books tell about strange happenings in a small town in the woods, creepy things that only kids see but adults never notice. Publication of the first book, The Haunted Mustache, is scheduled for fall 2021; Jennifer March Soloway at Andrea Brown Literary Agency did the deal for world rights.
Connie Hsu at Roaring Brook has acquired world rights to Parfait, Not Parfait! by Scott Rothman (l.) (Attack of the Underwear Dragon). Avery Monsen (All My Friends Are Dead) will illustrate. The book is a minimally worded read-aloud that takes readers on a wordplay journey. Publication is set for winter 2022; Erica Silverman at Stimola Literary represented the author, and Steven Malk at Writers House represented the illustrator.
Allyn Johnston at Beach Lane has bought world rights to An Abundance of Light by Lauren Stringer, a picture book about Henri Matisse's experiences in Tangier, Morocco, and about how the people, the culture, and most of all, the abundance of sunlight, changed Matisse's understanding of light and dark in both his art and his life. Publication is slated for fall 2022; Victoria Wells Arms at Wells Arms Literary/HG represented the author-illustrator.
Nancy Inteli and Megan Ilnitzki at HarperCollins have acquired world rights to Jason June's (l.) picture book Never Forget Eleanor, about the life-changing power of words and the ways in which those we love never truly leave us. The story follows a young elephant named Elijah who loves the stories his grandma Eleanor tells him. But when Eleanor's memory starts to fade, Elijah will need to become the storyteller himself. Bestselling picture book creator Loren Long will illustrate; publication is planned for winter 2023. Brent Taylor at Triada US represented the author, and Steven Malk at Writers House represented the artist.
Karen Boss at Charlesbridge has bought world rights to Branches of Hope: A Story About the 9/11 Survivor Tree, a nonfiction picture book by debut author Ann Magee (l.) and illustrated by Nicole Wong. The journey of the Callery pear tree rescued from Ground Zero and replanted 10 years later is presented alongside a wordless story about a girl and her first-responder uncle. Publication is set for summer 2021, in time for the 20th anniversary of 9/11. The author was represented by Carole Boston Weatherford, and Teresa Kietlinski at Bookmark Literary represented the illustrator.
Kristen Mohn at Capstone has acquired world rights to Best Buddies by Lynn Plourde, illustrated by Arthur Lin. In this story about friendship and growing up, a boy with Down syndrome starts kindergarten, and he and his dog realize that even though they can't be together all day long anymore, they'll always be best buddies. Publication is scheduled for fall 2021; Susan Cohen at Writers House represented the author, and Simon Bollinger at Shannon Associates represented the illustrator.
Katie Moore at Magination Press has bought world rights to They're So Flamboyant!, a picture book by Michael Genhart (l.) (Rainbow: A First Book of Pride) that shows the welcome change that comes over a neighborhood of birds when a flamboyance of pretty, pink, and proud flamingos moves in. Tony Neal will illustrate; publication is slated for fall 2021. Nicole Geiger at Full Circle Literary represented the author, and Frederica Dawson at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Lauri Hornik at Dial has acquired world rights to Marilyn Singer's (l.) Following the Holidays, illustrated by Dana Wulfekotte. The collection of poems celebrates Jewish holidays both familiar and not, and explores the history behind each special day. Publication is planned for fall 2022; the author represented herself, and Sean McCarthy at Sean McCarthy Literary Agency represented the artist.
Sarah Rockett at Sleeping Bear Press has bought world rights to Ocean Soup, written by Meeg Pincus (l.). The plastics in our oceans make the waters look more like a soup than the crystal-clear waters we expect, but who were those chefs who cooked up such a brew? And more importantly, what is the recipe for cleaning up our seas? Lucy Semple will illustrate; publication is set for spring 2021. Jenna Pocius at Red Fox Literary represented the author, and Anne Moore Armstrong at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Cindy Kim at Little Simon has acquired world rights to Babybug, a board book written and illustrated by Wednesday Kirwan. The book is a day-in-the-life adventure featuring baby's everyday activities imagined in nature. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022; Nicole Tugeau at Tugeau 2 represented the author.