Margaret Raymo at Versify has acquired world rights, in a three-book preempt, to two books from anti-racist educator Tiffany Jewell, plus audio rights to her bestselling nonfiction title, This Book Is Anti-Racist. The first is an untitled, illustrated book tailored to younger children about how to be anti-racist, which breaks down identity, racism, and provides a history of anti-racism and an anti-racist toolbox; the second, Everything I Learned About Racism I Learned in School, is a YA nonfiction title that highlights the experience and inequities Black and Brown students face in schools, told through a variety of personal narratives. Publication is tentatively set for spring and fall 2022, respectively; Weslie Turner will edit. Ayesha Pande at Ayesha Pande Literary did the deal.
Tiffany Liao at Holt has bought, at auction, world English rights to Scout's Honor by Lily Anderson, a YA novel following Prudence Perry, a biracial Puerto Rican teen born into a family of highly ranked Ladybird Scouts, elite monster hunters masquerading as a prim and proper ladies' social club. Prue gave up her tea set and daggers after her best friend was killed, but now must return to the scouts to face the biggest monster of all: her past. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Laura Zats at Headwater Literary Management brokered the deal while at Red Sofa Literary.
Kieran Viola at Disney Hyperion has acquired, with Rachel Stark editing, Once Upon a K-Prom by Kat Cho, a YA rom-com about a Korean American girl whose childhood best friend turned K-Pop star returns to their hometown to make good on their pact to go to prom together. Publication is scheduled for winter 2022; Beth Phelan at Gallt and Zacker Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Annie Berger at Sourcebooks Fire has acquired feminist horror YA novel My Dearest Darkest by debut author Kayla Cottingham. When outsider Finch Chamberlain and town golden girl Selena St. Clair accidentally wake something terrifying and ancient in the depths of their school, they must stop the horror they've unleashed before it devours their town. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Erica Bauman at Aevitas Creative Management handled the two-book deal for world rights.
Emilia Rhodes at HMH has bought, in an exclusive submission, It Doesn't Have to Be Awkward: Dealing with Relationships, Consent, and Other Hard-to-Talk-About Stuff by bestselling author Dr. Drew Pinsky and his daughter Paulina Pinsky. The book takes on the questions today's teens are asking themselves about sex, relationships, consent, establishing boundaries, and more. Publication is planned for April 2021; Albert Lee at United Talent Agency represented the authors in a deal for world rights.
Polo Orozco at Random House has acquired, in a seven-house auction, Nilah Magruder's Reel Love. Based on the author’s own experiences embracing being asexual, this middle grade graphic novel follows 12-year-old Nilah, who goes on a summer trip to the Blue Ridge Mountains where she develops a passion for fishing, meets a boy, and learns there's no getting away from growing up and from facing her questions about identity and love. Publication is scheduled for fall 2023; Patrice Caldwell at New Leaf Literary & Media negotiated the two-book deal for world English rights.
Erin Clarke at Knopf has bought, in an exclusive submission, The Sketchbook Seance by Gavriel Savit (The Way Back and Anna and the Swallow Man). The middle grade historical fiction novel follows Eva Root, who escapes her life as a traveling spiritual medium and runs away to the Chicago World's Fair, where she meets a mysterious magician assembling a team of apprentices to help ensure the survival of magic in America. Publication is set for summer 2022; Catherine Drayton at InkWell Management did the deal for North American rights.
Joanna Cárdenas at Kokila has bought, at auction, in a two-book, six-figure deal, Los Monstruos, the next middle grade novel by Diana Lopez (Confetti Girl). When Felice learns that she's the daughter of La Llorona, she vows to help her mother make peace with events that have turned her into the most famous monstruo of U.S.-Mexico border lore. Along the way, Felice meets the children of other monstruos, and together, they reverse the curses that have plagued the town of Tres Leches. Publication is planned for fall 2022; Stefanie Sanchez Von Borstel at Full Circle Literary handled the deal for world rights.
Mallory Kass at Scholastic has acquired Hummingbird by Natalie Lloyd (A Snicker of Magic). The #OwnVoices middle grade novel follows Olive, a 12-year-old with brittle bone disease, who's tired of being treated as "fragile." When she hears the legend of a magical, wish-granting bird, Olive risks everything to find the creature and make her one secret wish come true. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022; Suzie Townsend at New Leaf Literary & Media brokered the deal for North American rights.
Reka Simonsen at Atheneum has bought Joy McCullough's contemporary middle grade novel (Not) Starring Zadie Gonzalez. Zadie must spend the summer at her mother's theater company, where she absolutely will not perform—but she'll try to save her father’s struggling dental practice by supplying the cast with as much candy as possible. Publication is set for summer 2022; Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret negotiated the two-book deal for world rights.
Erica Sussman at HarperCollins has acquired, in a two-book deal, The Last Bear by debut author Hannah Gold. There are no bears left on Bear Island—at least that's what April is told when she accompanies her father there for a research trip. But what she finds will change her life forever. Publication is slated for February 2021; Claire Wilson at RCW did the deal for world rights, all languages, made jointly with Nick Lake and Harriet Wilson at HarperCollins UK.
Margaret Ferguson at Holiday House has bought world English rights to debut novel Listening to Birds by Allison Strout. Socially awkward Violet Crane lives alone with her mother who has panic attacks, while her father lives elsewhere, when middle school begins. Luckily, the large, rambunctious Walker family moves next door, and everything changes. But Violet learns that happiness doesn't always come in the guise of a large family, and that no family or friendship is perfect. Publication is planned for spring 2022; Steven Chudney at the Chudney Agency brokered the deal.
David Saylor and Megan Peace at Scholastic/Graphix have acquired Mabuhay! by author-illustrator Zachary Sterling. This #OwnVoices middle-grade graphic novel follows an American-born Filipino brother and sister who are struggling to belong in American suburbia when they discover that their mother is one of the Mangkukulam, Filipino witches that maintain the balance of power in the universe. Publication is scheduled for 2022; Tanya McKinnon at McKinnon Literary negotiated the deal for world rights.
Joni Sussman at Kar-Ben has bought The Prince of Steel Pier, a debut middle grade novel by Stacy Nockowitz featuring Joey, one of four brothers, who gets offered a job babysitting for the mob as he spends his summer working at his family's kosher hotel in Atlantic City. The only problem is, the girl he's supposed to watch isn't so little, and when the job he's taken puts his family in danger, he must find the strength to make the right decision, even if it goes against his family and his faith. Publication is set for 2022; Rena Rossner at the Deborah Harris Agency handled the deal for world rights.
Siobhan Ciminera at Simon Spotlight has acquired world rights to three titles in a new series, Thunder and Cluck, in the Ready-to-Read early reader line by Jill Esbaum (We Love Babies! ), illustrated by Miles Thompson. In the first book, Friends Do Not Eat Friends, a cheeky little dinosaur tries to convince a hungry T. rex he'd be better as a friend than a meal. Publication is planned for summer 2021; Tricia Lawrence at Erin Murphy Literary represented the author, and the illustrator represented himself.
Anna Roberto at Feiwel and Friends has bought world rights to Why? by Taye Diggs (l.), illustrated by Shane W. Evans, the team behind Chocolate Me and the forthcoming My Friend. A child struggles to understand: Why are the buildings burning? Why are people marching? Why are they crying? Distilling the conversations many children and adults are having about race, injustice, and anger, the picture book gives context that young readers can connect with. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Tina Dubois at ICM Partners represented the author and the artist represented himself.
Emily Feinberg at Roaring Brook has acquired debut Fiona Builds a Fairy House, plus a second, untitled manuscript, by Kristen Dickson (l.). Celia Krampien (Sunny) will illustrate the first book, in which Fiona enthusiastically undertakes a new hobby with the help of an assortment of fairytale creatures, a powerful imagination, and a very unhappy, very wet cat. Publication is set for fall 2022. Molly O'Neill at Root Literary brokered the two-book deal for the author, and Andrea Morrison at Writers House represented the illustrator in the single-book deal.
Megan Ilnitzki at HarperCollins has acquired world rights to The Totally NOT Wicked Stepmother by three-time Emmy nominee Samantha Berger (l.), illustrated by Neha Rawat. The picture book shatters the fairytale stigma about stepmothers and follows a girl who discovers her stepmother might not be so wicked after all. Publication is planned for fall 2022; Brenda Bowen at the Book Group represented the author, and Atlanta Japp at Advocate Art USA represented the illustrator.
Carol Hinz at Lerner/Carolrhoda has bought world rights to From the Tops of the Trees by Kao Kalia Yang (l.), illustrated by Rachel Wada. In this picture book memoir, a girl who has known only life within a refugee camp in Thailand gains new perspective when her father carries her to the top of a tree in a gesture of possibility, hope, and love. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Heather Karpas at ICM Partners represented the author, and Amy Tompkins at Transatlantic Agency represented the illustrator.
Nina Gruener at Cameron Kids has acquired world rights to Juliet's Lighthouse by Caroline Arnold (l.), illustrated by Rachell Sumpter (Down Under the Pier), a picture book inspired by the journals of Juliet Fish Nichols, light keeper on Angel Island in the foggy San Francisco Bay at the time of the 1906 earthquake. Publication is set for spring 2022; Andrea Brown at Andrea Brown Literary represented the author, and the illustrator represented herself.
Luana Kay Horry at HarperCollins has bought Goldilocks and the 3 Knocks from author-illustrator Gregory Barrington (Cow Boy Is Not a Cowboy). Before Goldilocks ever walked through the bears' front door, they knocked on hers and made themselves rather comfortable; this picture book aims to tell the real story behind the fairy tale. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; Deborah Warren at East/West Literary brokered the deal for world rights.
Tamar Mays at HarperCollins has acquired world rights to Let's Draw (working title), written and illustrated by Maddie Frost, a collection of step-by-step instructions for drawing animals. Publication is slated for summer 2022; Anne Moore Armstrong at the Bright Agency negotatiated the deal.
Patty Rice at Andrews McMeel has bought English rights to graphic designer Michael Arndt's board book, rAinbowZ, an alphabet and color primer featuring rainbow colors to engage young eyes and encourage verbal and visual literacy. Publication is planned for summer 2021; Joanna Volpe at New Leaf Literary & Media handled the deal.
Jessica Garrison at Dial has acquired Hello (From Here) by Chandler Baker and Wesley King, a YA love story about two teens who fall for each other while forced apart during the Covid-19 quarantine—a wealthy boy with an anxiety disorder and a grocery-delivering girl surviving paycheck to paycheck. The novel, written by two authors a continent apart during the first months of the pandemic, explores the privileges and problems that Covid-19 has helped expose in our society. Publication is set for fall 2021; Daniel Lazar and Brianne Johnson at Writers House, representing Chandler and Wesley, respectively, did the deal for North American rights.
Erica Sussman at HarperTeen has preempted Some Mistakes Were Made, a contemporary romance debut by Kristin Dwyer, pitched as a YA Normal People crossed with Taylor Swift's Cardigan. It's been a year since Ellis Truman has seen Easton Albrey, the boy who used to be the center of her world. But time hasn't dulled any of the heartache she still feels, and Ellis will have to decide whether to hold onto the pain she knows, or risk losing what little she has left. Publication is planned for winter 2022; Sarah Landis at Sterling Lord Literistic brokered the two-book deal for world rights.
Grace Kendall at FSG has bought, at auction, in a six-figure deal, Saints of the Household and a second untitled YA novel by debut author Ari Tison. Told in alternating points of view, in poetry and verse, the first book follows two Bribri American brothers navigating an abusive home, new love, and a secret at school as they try to understand who they want to be—saints or otherwise. Publication is scheduled for fall 2023; Sara Crowe at Pippin Properties negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Jenny Bak at Viking has acquired, at auction, in a six-figure deal, I Guess I Live Here Now by debut author Claire Ahn. The contemporary YA novel finds Melody uprooted from her life in Manhattan and relocated to her father's villa in Seoul, plunging the Korean American teen into a whirlwind of culture shock and family secrets as she struggles to reconcile her identity in a place she's supposed to call home. Publication is slated for spring 2022; Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret handled the two-book deal for world rights.
Sylvan Creekmore at Wednesday Books has bought world rights to The One that Got Away and Careful What You Wish For by Sophie Gonzales. In the first book, 18-year-old Maya has vengeance on her mind when she participates in a reality show in which her now-famous ex re-dates all his ex-girlfriends to decide which of them was the one who got away. In the second book, 16-year-old fanfic writer Ivy must turn to her arch-enemy for help when she accidentally manifests one of her favorite TV characters into existence, and ends up falling for the girl she thought she hated. Publication is set for spring 2022 and spring 2023 respectively; Molly Ker Hawn at the Bent Agency brokered the six-figure deal.
Tamara Grasty at Page Street has acquired North American and U.K. rights to Anything but Fine by Tobias Madden, about a gay teen ballet dancer who breaks his foot and begins to question everything he once took for granted, including his unlikely friendship with the dreamy, straight, perfect-in-every-way captain of the rowing team. Publication is planned for 2022; Claire Friedman at InkWell Management did the deal.
Carolina Ortiz at HarperAlley has bought Son M. (l.) and Robin Yao's debut YA graphic novel Thief of the Heights, which explores the bond between two boys, Mustafa and Basem. When their dream to climb to the top of their stratified capitalist society pulls them further apart, Basem and Mustafa struggle to do what is best for them and what is best for their community. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; Hannah Fergesen at KT Literary represented the author, and Peter Ryan at Stimola Literary Studio represented the illustrator.
Dana Chidiac at Dial has acquired You Are More Than Magic: The Memo for Young Readers by Minda Harts. A YA version of the author's The Memo: What Women of Color Need to Know to Secure a Seat at the Table, the book is a guide for girls of color looking to find their voice and claim space as they prepare for school, college, and their careers. Publication is slated for spring 2022; Monica Odom at Odom Media Management represented the author in the deal for world rights.
Jeffrey West and David Levithan at Scholastic US, in partnership with Yasmin Morrissey at Scholastic UK, have bought, in a preempt, world rights to a middle-grade fantasy trilogy by debut author Annaliese Avery, beginning with The Nightsilver Promise. Set in a reimagined twilight world , 13-year-old Paisley Fitzwilliam must defy her foretold fate to find her mother, protect her brother, and fulfil her true destiny. Publication for the first book is set for summer/fall 2021; Helen Boyle at Pickled Ink did the three-book deal.
Phoebe Yeh at Crown has acquired North American rights to Stuck, a middle grade novel from Jennifer Swender (Solving for M). Swender's second novel is about a boy who has spent years hiding a secret: Austin struggles to read. But at a new school, Austin discovers he's not the only one with secrets. Publication is scheduled for fall 2021; Jennifer Weltz at Jean V. Naggar Literary negotiated the deal.
Mary Kate Castellani at Bloomsbury has bought three titles by author by Kalynn Bayron. The first, The Vanquishers, pitched as Watchmen meets Stranger Things with a Buffy twist, is her middle grade debut, in which vampires have been extinct for 13 years, but Malika "Boog" Wilson's parents aren't taking any chances. Being forced to follow the old rules makes navigating middle school tough, but when new student Aaron goes missing, Boog and her BFFs suspect that the undead might not be extinct after all. Publication is set for fall 2022. Publication for the other two books, a sequel to This Poison Heart and an untitled YA fairy tale reimagining, is planned for spring 2022 and spring 2023, respectively. Jamie Vankirk at Rainbow Nerds Literary handled the deal for world rights.
Mark Siegel at First Second has acquired Asgardians, a new middle-grade graphic novel series by George O'Connor, author of the Olympians series; the new series is based on the Norse myths of Asgard. Publication is slated for 2023; Tanya McKinnon at McKinnon Literary did the deal for world rights.
Julia McCarthy at Atheneum has bought North American rights to Wizkit by Tanya J Scott. The middle grade graphic novel follows a one-eyed magical cat named Wizkit, who must leave the comforts of her Wizard's apprenticeship to return an annoyingly optimistic Book to the Library, encountering many strange and fantastic creatures along the way. Publication is set for spring 2023; Chloe Seager at Madeline Milburn Ltd. negotiated the two-book deal.
Whitney Leopard at Random House Graphic has acquired Summer Vamp by Violet Chan Karim. The middle-grade graphic novel follows a girl who finds herself accidentally attending a summer camp for vampires. Can she fit in with the vamps without raising suspicion until she is able to escape to the human summer camp across the lake? Publication is planned for 2024; the creator represented herself for world rights.
Andrea Colvin while at Lion Forge bought Pax Samson Vol 1: The Cookout by Rashad Doucet (l.) and Jason Reeves, a middle graphic novel in which 12-year-old Pax Samson is a hero when it comes to cooking and testing recipes, but with a family of world-famous superheroes and the fate of the world at stake, he'll need to decide between following his passion for cooking or following in his family's footsteps. Publication is scheduled for summer 2021; Grace Bornhoft will edit. The author and illustrator represented themselves in the deal.
Kate Harrison at Dial has acquired, in a six-house auction, Hamsters Make Terrible Roommates, written by Cheryl B. Klein (l.) (Wings), illustrated by debut artist Abhi Alwar. Introverted Henry silently seethes at his roommate, the gregarious Marvin, until an unexpected outburst makes both hamsters reevaluate their communications. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Brianne Johnson at Writers House represented the author-illustrator team in the two-book deal for world rights.
Nancy Paulsen at Penguin/Paulsen has bought, in an exclusive submission, world rights to picture book Daddy Speaks Love by Leah Henderson, illustrated by E.B. Lewis. It's a love letter to the big and small ways fathers show love, inspired in part by the words of George Floyd's daughter. Publication is set for spring 2022; Clelia Gore at Martin Literary & Media Management represented the author, and Jeff Dwyer at Dwyer & O'Grady represented the illustrator.
Sylvie Frank at S&S/Wiseman has acquired world rights to Grand Day by Jean Reidy (l.) (Truman), illustrated by Samantha Cotterill (Secret Rhino Society), a picture book tribute to grandparents and grandkids and the fun time they have when they're together. Publication is planned for fall 2022; Erin Murphy at Erin Murphy Literary represented the author, and Kirsten Hall at Catbird Productions represented the illustrator.
Luana Kay Horry at HarperCollins has bought North American rights to Balloons for Papa by Elizabeth Gilbert Bedia (l.), illustrated by Erika Meza. This picture book follows a boy who gives his father, who has depression, a bundle of brightly colored balloons. Publication is scheduled for winter 2021. Marlene Sturm at Sturm Rights did the deal on behalf of Upside Down Books/Trigger Publishing in the U.K.
Mary Lee Donovan at Candlewick has acquired world rights to One Tiny Treefrog and two companion nonfiction picture book titles by Mackenzie Joy and Tony Piedra. Set in the Costa Rican rainforest, One Tiny Treefrog traces the journey of a school of tadpoles from 10 eggs, to tadpoles, to one sole frog survivor. Publication is slated for spring 2022, with the companion titles following in 2023 and 2024. Kevin Lewis at Erin Murphy Literary represented the team.
Erica Finkel at Abrams has bought two picture books by Thyra Heder (How Do You Dance?) beginning with Joe Boat, the story of a boy in a small fishing town who struggles to convince his neighbors that he's building a boat of his own, because it doesn't look like a boat at all. Publication is set for fall 2022; Stephen Barr at Writers House negotiated the deal for world rights.
Jennifer Newens at West Margin Press has acquired world rights to My Name Is Not Ed Tug by author-illustrator Amy Nielander, about a boy named Edimorwhitimormiligimmus Tug whose teacher suggests he shortens it for ease. Publication is planned for fall 2022; Adria Goetz at Martin Literary Management brokered the deal.