Mary Kate Castellani at Bloomsbury has acquired a new fantasy series by bestselling author Brigid Kemmerer, beginning with the first book, Forging Silver into Stars, in a three-book deal. The story takes place four years after the events of the Cursebreaker trilogy, and Tycho is now a Lord. Meanwhile, friends Jax and Callyn struggle to survive with the difficult hands fate dealt them. Together Tycho, Jax, and Callyn find themselves embroiled in a world of shifting alliances, brewing rebellion, and ancient magic. Publication is set for spring 2022; Suzie Townsend at New Leaf Literary & Media did the deal for world rights.
Stacey Barney and Caitlin Tutterow at Penguin/Paulsen have bought world rights, in a preempt, to We Shall Be Monsters, a YA fantasy duology by Tara Sim (Scavenge the Stars) that's pitched as Mary Shelley meets Indian mythology, in which a young woman desperate to resurrect her sister escapes accusations of witchcraft by joining a group of rebels on the condition she raises their rightful prince from the dead. Publication is tentatively planned for spring 2023; Victoria Marini at the Irene Goodman Agency brokered the deal.
Sarah Barley at Flatiron Books has bought, in a preempt, Mina Fears's The Scorpion Queen, inspired by a Malian fairy tale and steeped in West African traditions, pitched as Uprooted meets Children of Blood and Bone. The crossover fantasy fairy tale is about a disgraced merchant's daughter who is forced to become a chambermaid to an emperor's daughter, a princess whose suitors are challenged to gruesome and impossible trials to win her hand, and who makes a choice between escaping Timbuktu and ending the trials forever. Publication is tentatively scheduled for 2023; Jenny Bent at the Bent Agency acquired North American rights.
Trisha de Guzman at FSG has acquired, in an exclusive submission, River City, a duology by Rose Szabo (What Big Teeth). The first book, We All Fall Down, is about a city where magic used to thrive and four queer young people are cast as archetypal figures—the Maiden, the Hero, the Monster, and the Witch—in an age-old ritual that will revive the flow of magic, even though none of them quite fit the roles thrust upon them and in the end discover that they can only stay true to themselves. Publication is slated for spring 2022; Jennifer Azantian at Azantian Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world English rights.
While at Disney Hyperion, Emily Meehan bought YA debut novel Briarcliff Prep by Brianna Peppins; Britt Rubiano and Christine Collins will edit. At a historically Black boarding school inspired by the author's alma mater, Spelman College, freshman Avi navigates a budding romance and dreams of writing for the prestigious school newspaper, while grappling with her sister's abusive relationship with another student. Publication for the first book is planned for fall 2022; Jas Perry at KT Literary handled the two-book deal for world rights.
Beverly Horowitz at Delacorte Press has bought the Little Bad Book series by Magnus Myst (l.), illustrated by Thomas Hussung, and translated from the German by Marshall Yarbrough, an international bestseller that will now be available in English. Full of creepy-funny stories, tricky puzzles, and involving spooky art on every page, the Little Bad Book can be put back in order, its mystery solved, only with the reader's help. Publication for book one is set for summer 2022, book two for fall 2022, and book three for spring 2023. Tina Amor brokered the three-book deal for world rights on behalf of Ueberreuter Verlag.
Samantha Gentry at Little, Brown has acquired, in an exclusive submission, Omega Morales and the Legend of La Lechuza, a middle grade novel by Laekan Zea Kemp about a girl who must learn to trust herself—and her ancestral powers—when she comes face to face with the Mexican legend, La Lechuza. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; Andrea Morrison at Writers House negotiated the deal for world rights.
In a joint deal, Gina Gagliano at Random House Graphic (U.S.), Ben Horslen and Katie Sinfield at Penguin Random House Children’s (U.K.), Lynne Missen at Tundra Books (Canada), and Zoe Walton at Penguin Random House Australia have bought world rights to the contemporary middle grade graphic novel Oh Brother, inspired by the author's own story, by Australian author-artist Georgina Chadderton. The graphic novel centers on her relationship with her brother—who is autistic and also has an intellectual disability—as she grows up, starts a new school, and navigates building new friendships. The book will be simultaneously published in these four countries in 2024; Annabel Barker at Annabel Barker Agency and Daniel Lazar at Writers House did the deal.
Melissa Manlove at Chronicle has acquired world rights to two middle-grade nonfiction books from They Called Us Enemy coauthor Justin Eisinger (l.). We Built It! Rollercoasters and We Built It! Bridges will be illustrated by Cryssy Cheung and will bring the world of ingenuity to life with graphic storytelling that explores the history of these gravity-defying and thrilling inventions, and the trial-and-error process of innovation. Publication of We Built It! Rollercoasters is slated for 2024; Dara Hyde at Hill Nadell Literary Agency represented the author and illustrator.
Angela Song at Clarion Books has bought world rights to middle grade debut Extracurricular by Diana Ma. The novel is about 12-year-old Lily Hong, who enters a talent show with her friends in a desperate bid to save the struggling community center that houses her family's Chinese school. Publication is planned for fall 2023; Christa Heschke at McIntosh & Otis negotiated the deal.
Kendra Levin at Simon & Schuster has acquired We Are Your Children Too by P. O’Connell Pearson, a middle grade nonfiction account of the student-led strike in Prince Edward County, Va., that became part of Brown v. Board of Education, how white leaders closed public schools for five years rather than desegregate, and the courage of PE's Black community in demanding equality then and forging a better future today. Publication is set for summer 2022; Susan Hawk at Upstart Crow Literary did the deal for world rights.
Grace Scheipeter at Oni Press has bought a middle grade graphic novel by debut creator Amanda Weidman, Mari and the Cloud Princess, in which Mari, an ordinary girl in a small seaside town, happens to be best friends with the princess of the clouds who comes to play in the forest that borders her town—until plans for a new resort threaten to tear down the forest. Publication is slated for 2023; Britt Siess at Britt Siess Creative Management represented the creator for North American rights.
Rachel Poloski while at Little, Brown acquired world rights to the first two books in the Peach & Plum early graphic novel series, written and illustrated by Tim McCanna, about two best friends who rhyme all the time. Esther Cajahuaringa will edit; Publication for the first book is scheduled for summer 2022. Caryn Wiseman at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency brokered the deal.
Rosemary Brosnan and Cynthia Leitich Smith at HarperCollins/Heartdrum have bought Circle of Love by Monique Gray Smith (l.) (Cree-Lakota), in an exclusive submission, illustrated by Nicole Niedhardt (Navajo). This picture book tells the story of a Cree girl who reflects on and inclusively celebrates many types of loving relationships at an urban, intertribal community center gathering. Publication is set for winter 2024; Jacqueline Lipton at Raven Quill Literary Agency represented the author, and the illustrator was unagented.
Jess Harold of Orchard Books has acquired world rights to The Wave Riders, a picture book biography of Chinese artist Ai Weiwei and his work surrounding the refugee crisis, by Eyes That Kiss in the Corners author Joanna Ho (l.), illustrated by Cátia Chien, winner of the 2020 Gold Medal from the Society of Illustrators (The Bear and the Moon). Publication is planned for fall 2023; Caryn Wiseman at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Steven Malk at Writers House represented the illustrator.
Carol Hinz at Lerner/Carolrhoda has bought world rights to Big Bear and Little Fish by Sandra Nickel (l.), illustrated by Il Sung Na, a picture book in which a worried bear and an optimistic fish form an unlikely friendship. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; Victoria Wells Arms at Wells Arms Literary/HG Literary represented the author, and Lori Nowicki at Painted Words represented the illustrator.
Emily Feinberg at Roaring Brook Press has acquired world rights to debut picture book Cesaria Wears No Shoes by Denise Adusei (l.), co-founder of #BlackCreatorsInKidlit and #LatinxPitch, illustrated by Priscila Soares. Cesaria Wears No Shoes is about a deaf girl who experiences the wonders of African diaspora-inspired Carnival celebrations by feeling the music through her bare feet. Publication is slated for spring 2023; Regina Brooks at Serendipity Literary Agency did the deal.
Suzy Krogulski and Rebecca Davis at Boyds Mills Press have bought world rights to Scattered: A Story of Estimation, plus three more picture books featuring the same characters, about a group of curious kittens who explore spatial reasoning and other early math skills. Written by Ann Marie Stephens (l.) (the Arithmechicks series) and illustrated by Jenn Harney (Underwear! and Swim Swim Sink), the books will be published two per season beginning in spring 2024. Emily Mitchell at Wernick & Pratt represented the author, and Rachel Orr at Prospect Agency represented the illustrator in the four-book deal.
Arthur A. Levine at Levine Querido has acquired world rights in an exclusive submission to Ways to Play, the debut picture book by Lyn Miller-Lachmann (l.) (Rogue), illustrated by Gabriel Alborozo (This Old Dog), about a child on the autism spectrum whose cousins criticize her for not playing the "right" way with her toys. With the help of a beloved family pet, she teaches them that the right way to play is… any way you want to. This collaboration of neurodivergent author and illustrator is set for fall 2022; Jacqui Lipton of Raven Quill Literary represented the author, and the illustrator represented himself.
Sonali Fry at Random House has acquired, in an exclusive submission, world rights to the first four books of a board book series, Brown Baby Parade, by Nikki Shannon Smith (l.), illustrated by Ronique Ellis. The books follow Black babies enjoying life, learning and growing, and giving and receiving love. Publication of the first book, Love Is All Around, is planned for fall 2022; Jennifer March Soloway at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Sarah Rocket at Sleeping Bear has bought world rights to Brainstorm! by Rebecca Gardyn Levington (l.), in which a child, struggling with what to write about, is swept up in a whirlwind of words, pictures, and ideas, until she finds herself caught in a downpour of her own creativity. Kate Konreif will illustrate. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; the author represented herself, and Anne Moore Armstrong at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Andrea Colvin at Little, Brown has acquired, in a preempt, Kokoro by Christine Mari, a YA graphic memoir of growing up and negotiating her place in two worlds—America and Japan—while navigating the mental and emotional legacy of being a “hafu”—half Japanese, half American. Publication is scheduled for fall 2024; Samantha Haywood and Devon Halliday at Transatlantic Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Ashley Hearn at Peachtree Teen has bought YA fantasy debut The Vermilion Emporium by Jamie Pacton (Lucky Girl), pitched as if The Radium Girls took place in the world of Howl’s Moving Castle, in which two misfits discover the coveted and deadly secret to weaving lace from starlight inside a magical curiosity shop. Publication is planned for fall 2022; Kate Testerman at KT Literary brokered the two-book deal for world rights.
Joy Peskin at FSG has acquired Disappearing Act, a YA memoir in verse by Jiordan Castle, whose poetry has appeared in the New Yorker. The summer before the start of high school, Jiordan's middle-class Jewish family on Long Island begins to unravel when her father is incarcerated. Publication is slated for spring 2023; Ashley Lopez at Waxman Literary Agency did the deal for world English rights.
Erika Turner at IDW has bought, in a three-book deal, a YA graphic novel series by debut writer and illustrator team AJ O. Mason (l.) and Dominic Bustamante, called Kloud 9. The queer space opera is about Kal, a lonely orphan trying to keep himself afloat with odd jobs, and Cosmo, an extraterrestrial Star Soldier. After falling in love, the two are forced to go on the run and flee the solar system, joined by a motley crew. Publication of the first book is set for 2023; Britt Siess at Britt Siess Creative Management represented the duo for world rights.
Matt Ringler at Scholastic has acquired, in a preempt, debut middle grade fantasy The Scroll of Chaos by Elsie Chapman, following a girl who travels to the realm of ancient Chinese deities to save the planet from a world-ending flood, only to discover the people she loves most may be beyond saving—unless she can steal the realm's immortal magic. Publication is tentatively planned for spring 2023; Victoria Marini at the Irene Goodman Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Samantha Gentry at Little, Brown has bought The Heartfinds of Mabel Cunningham, a middle grade novel by Jaime Berry about a quiet, pun-loving girl who only feels like herself while extreme treasure-hunting with her grandfather. But when real life starts to crumble around her, she must learn to let go of the past and embrace the future. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; Kaitlyn Johnson at the Belcastro Agency brokered the deal for world rights.
Kelsey Horton at Delacorte has acquired in an exclusive submission, The Sister Split, a middle grade debut by Auriane Desombre (I Think I Love You), pitched as a reverse Parent Trap, in which a girl teams up with her future stepsister to create a plan to stop their parents from getting married, so she doesn't have to move away from the city and leave behind her best friend—a girl—she's starting to develop feelings for. Publication is slated for spring 2023; Penny Moore at Aevitas Creative Management handled the deal for world rights.
Courtney Stevenson at Quill Tree has bought Why We Went Extinct: An Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Species That Just Didn't Make It by Tokyo Zoo science communicator Tadaaki Imaizumi (l.) and zoology writer Takashi Maruyama. Originally a bestseller in Japan, this dark yet whimsical full-color middle grade nonfiction collection is composed of monologues from the animals that have gone extinct through the ages. Publication is set for 2023; Jeff Shreve at the Science Factory negotiated the deal for North American rights.
Peter Phillips at Tundra Books has acquired the debut middle grade novel Young Blood by Layla Hersch, in a two-book deal. Embedded with Jewish lore, the murder mystery follows adopted vampire brothers Adam and Victor, who play opposite roles in tracking down a killer, but little do they know the bodies are bait to hunt their own kind. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023 and summer 2024; Emily Forney at BookEnds Literary brokered the deal for world rights.
Courtney Code at Abrams has bought world English rights to Just One Flake, a picture book by SLJ blogger and author Travis Jonker (The Very Last Castle; Blue Floats Away), which also marks Jonker's first time illustrating as well as writing. The picture book tells the story of a boy who will stop at nothing to catch just one snowflake on his tongue during a snowstorm—but when he does catch it, it's not in the way he originally envisioned. Publication is planned for 2023; Stephen Barbara at InkWell Management did the deal.
Neal Porter at Holiday House/Neal Porter Books has acquired Ada and the Goat, a debut picture book by author-illustrator Heidi Aubrey, about an aspiring farmer and the meddlesome goat who upends her simple, ordered life. Publication is slated for summer 2023; Jenna Pocius at Red Fox Literary negotiated the deal for world rights.
Richard Jackson at Atheneum/Richard Jackson Books bought, before his death, Time to Fly by George Ella Lyon (l.), about a baby bird hesitant to leave the nest. Stephanie Fizer Coleman will illustrate; Alex Borbolla will edit. Publication is set for summer 2022; Brenda Bowen at the Book Group represented the author, and Anne Moore Armstrong at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Aneeka Kalia at Viking has bought, in a preempt, world rights to debut picture book Rocket Ship, Solo Trip, written by Chiara Beth Colombi (l.) and illustrated by Scott Magoon, following a young rocket ship's first journey into space and all of the trepidation, excitement, and accomplishment that comes with it. Publication is planned for summer 2023; Joanna Volpe and Abigail Donoghue at New Leaf Literary & Media represented the author, and Paul Rodeen at Rodeen Literary Management represented the illustrator.
Maria Modugno at Random House Studio has acquired North American and open market rights for Huffalo Buffalo Fluffalo by Bess Kalb (l.), Emmy-nominated writer and author of Nobody Will Tell You This but Me. This silly picture book about a surly buffalo who tries to act tough will be illustrated by Erin Kraan. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Erin Malone at WME represented the author, and Kirsten Hall at Catbird Productions represented the illustrator.
Chris Krones at Clarion Books has bought world rights to B Is for Bellies, a picture book celebration of every body and a primer to love, respect, and admire our bodies no matter their color, shape, size, ability, or gender expression, written by Rennie Dyball (l.) and illustrated by Mia Saine. Publication is set for spring 2023; Elizabeth Rudnick at Gillian MacKenzie Agency represented the author, and Sylvie Hamel at Anna Goodson Illustration represented the illustrator.
Sarah Shumway at Bloomsbury has acquired world rights for Walk the Walk by debut author R.J. Owens (l.), illustrated by Reggie Brown, a picture book in which Dexter and Papa walk several miles to Dex's piano lessons during the Montgomery bus boycott. Papa tells Dex that when it comes to desegregation, you can't just talk the talk, you've got to walk the walk—so they keep walking, discovering that their destination is closer than they knew. Publication is planned for fall 2023; Karen Grencik at Red Fox Literary represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Naomi Krueger at Beaming Books has bought, and Andrea Hall will edit, Being Brave by debut author Monica Acker (l.), a picture book about a child who is inspired to be strong and brave like her mother, who is living with a serious illness. Paran Kim will illustrate. Publication is scheduled for November 2022; Kaitlyn Sanchez at Context Literary Agency represented the author, and Tina Doffing at Astound US represented the illustrator in the deal for world rights.
Alexander Zablotsky at PJ Library has acquired Next Year in the White House! The Journey to Barack Obama's First Presidential Seder by author-illustrator Janice Hechter. The book is an illustrated nonfiction account of the experience of Eric Lesser, a young Jewish staffer (and now Massachusetts State Senator) who organized an impromptu Passover Seder on the campaign trail during Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign. The tentative publication date is winter 2023; Liz Nealon at Great Dog Literary did the deal for world rights.
Eve Adler at Sterling Publishing has bought world rights to the picture book Bunny with a Big Heart, written and illustrated by Zoe Waring, in which a little bunny with a big heart wants to help her woodland friends, and spreads springtime happiness around the forest. Publication is slated for spring 2022; Freddie Dawson represented the author-illustrator.