Newbery Medalist Kwame Alexander (The Crossover) has signed a multi-book deal with Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. Under the new agreement, Alexander will deliver a middle grade trilogy called The Door of No Return, slated to begin in fall 2022, as well as a chapter book and a picture book, all to be edited by Margaret Raymo, who has been named executive editor at LBYR. Also included in the deal is a book of poems for adults which will be edited by Judy Clain, Little, Brown’s v-p and editor-in-chief, and scheduled for publication in February 2023. Megan Tingley, executive v-p and publisher of LBYR and Bruce Nichols, senior v-p and publisher of Little, Brown and Company prevailed in a five-house auction to acquire world rights from Deneen C. Howell of Williams & Connolly.
“From Emily Dickinson and Langston Hughes to David Sedaris and Vashti Harrison, Little, Brown has been at the forefront of publishing meaningful and majestic books that matter by great authors and illustrators,” Alexander said in a statement announcing the deal. “To be in this good company is a dream to build on, and my imagination is gonna thrive.”
Tingley expressed her enthusiasm about the news, saying, “Kwame Alexander is not just an author, he is a publishing superhero. A supremely talented poet and storyteller, an electrifying public speaker, and an innovative marketer, he has inspired millions to believe in the power of words to transform lives. Working with Alexander is the opportunity of a lifetime and we seized it with both hands—we can’t wait to partner with him to bring his work to even greater heights and to reach millions more readers.”
And Nichols noted that the new arrangement will unite Alexander’s future works under one umbrella. “Kwame Alexander is not just a star in the world of books for young readers, he is a star communicator and poet to audiences of all ages, period,” Nichols said. “Little, Brown is proud and excited to be publishing his adult titles and coordinating with our colleagues to become his new home for projects of all shapes and sizes.”
This article has been updated.