Alessandra Balzer at HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray has acquired, at auction, Aleema Omotoni's debut Everyone's Thinking It, a YA novel pitched as a loose reimagining of A Midsummer Night's Dream if Shakespeare grew up watching Mean Girls and Dear White People. At an elite boarding school in the English countryside, Nigerian cousins Iyanu and Kitan are thrown into the middle of a schoolwide conspiracy when everyone's juicy relationship secrets are released, Burn Book style, the week before the annual Valentine's Day Ball. Publication is planned for spring 2023; Claire Friedman at InkWell Management negotiated the two-book deal for North American rights.
Sarah Grill at Wednesday Books has bought Amanda Quain's The Ghosts Are a Metaphor, a genderswapped YA contemporary retelling of Northanger Abbey pitched as Never Have I Ever meets The X-Files, in which skeptic Hattie Tilney has to navigate the grief of her paranormal-loving father's death after being assigned to investigate her (allegedly) haunted high school alongside transfer student Kit Morland, whose passion for ghost hunting makes Hattie want to believe in something—and someone—for the first time. Publication is set for spring 2023; Moe Ferrara at BookEnds Literary did the deal for world English rights.
Claire Stetzer at Inkyard Press has acquired, in an exclusive submission, The Scarlet Alchemist by Kylie Lee Baker (The Keeper of Night), a dark YA fantasy duology set in an alternate Tang Dynasty China, where alchemy has led to income inequality as the rich eat gold to achieve eternal youth, and a poor biracial girl with the ability to raise the dead gets caught up in the dangerous political games of the royal family. Publication is scheduled for fall 2023; Mary C. Moore at Kimberley Cameron & Associates brokered the two-book deal for world English rights.
Stacey Barney at Penguin/Paulsen has bought We Built This City by Cat Patrick (Tornado Brain). The middle grade novel is about a 13-year-old girl on tour of the East Coast in August 1985 with the Signing Stars performing sign-language group, driven by a mission to reveal her secret crush as a Long-Distance Dedication on Casey Kasem's American Top 40 Countdown before the tour ends and eighth grade begins. Publication is slated for spring 2023; Daniel Lazar at Writers House sold North American rights.
Hilary Van Dusen and Olivia Swomley at Candlewick/MIT Kids have acquired world rights to The Adventures of Maker Girl and Professor Smarts by debut graphic novelist Jasmine Florentine in a two-book deal. Twelve-year-old best friends Yaya and Chuy prove that you don't have to have superpowers to defeat supervillains; all you need is a love for physics and engineering and a knack for trouble. Publication is planned for spring 2024 and spring 2025; Jemiscoe Chambers-Black at Andrea Brown Literary Agency negotiated the deal.
Trisha de Guzman at FSG has bought, in an exclusive submission, world rights to The Ghosts of Rancho Espanto and an untitled middle grade novel by Adrianna Cuevas (The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez; Cuba in My Pocket), about a Cuban American boy who is sent to work on a ranch as punishment for a school prank gone wrong, where he's confronted with an inexplicable mystery that reveals his greatest fears and forces him to rely on unexpected allies. Publication is set for winter 2023; Stefanie Sanchez Von Borstel at Full Circle Literary brokered the deal.
Josh Gregory at Albert Whitman has acquired an all-new contemporary middle grade series spinoff of The Boxcar Children, written by Stacia Deutsch, in a four-book deal beginning with The Jessie Files: The Friendship Feature in summer 2022. Deborah Warren at East West Literary Agency sold world rights.
Katie Carella at Scholastic Acorn has bought, in a three-book deal, world rights to Zoya Glitters!, a new early reader series by Valerie Bolling (l.), illustrated by Kai Robinson. This series follows a young artist and her dog, Coco, as they explore their creativity, with a dash of glitter all around. The first two books are scheduled for summer 2023, and the third book for fall 2023; James McGowan at BookEnds represented the author, and the illustrator represented themselves.
Nikki Garcia at Little, Brown has acquired, in an exclusive submission, world rights to Sumo Libre by author-illustrator Joe Cepeda. The picture book tells the story of Max, who loves Lucha Libre, and Kenji, who loves Sumo wrestling, and how their disagreement about which is better leads the friends to create something unexpected and spectacular. Publication is slated for summer 2024; Jennifer Rofé at Andrea Brown Literary Agency negotiated the deal.
Megan Ilnitzki at HarperCollins has bought world rights to author-illustrator Breanna Carzoo's picture book Greenlight, in which a lonely green traffic light, confused by why the cars race away every time they see her, quits shining until the resulting traffic jam illuminates the power and connection of her own light. Publication is planned for summer 2023; Adria Goetz at Martin Literary Management handled the deal.
Catherine Frank at Peachtree has acquired, at auction, world rights to The Bard and His Book, a narrative nonfiction book by Ann Bausum, about how the First Folio saved the plays of William Shakespeare from oblivion. The book traces the advent of collecting the works of great writers for preservation, celebrating both the written word and books as objects, along with Shakespeare himself. Publication is set for spring 2024; Hannah Mann at Writers House brokered the deal.
Kathleen Merz at Eerdmans has bought world English rights to Carly Allen-Fletcher's Kingdoms of Life, which lays out the scientific kingdom model of classification while offering a glimpse of the weird and wonderful inhabitants of our planet. Publication is scheduled for fall 2023; Anna Olswanger of Olswanger Literary represented the author-illustrator.
Esther Cajahuaringa while at Little, Brown acquired world rights to Daughters of the Sun by Ann Whitford Paul Honor recipient Belen Medina Cabot (l.), illustrated by Caldecott Honor artist Juana Martinez-Neal; Andrea Spooner will edit. The picture book is about the interconnectedness of immigration and migration through the eyes of a human and a monarch butterfly. Publication is slated for fall 2024; Deborah Warren at East West Literary Agency represented the author, and Stefanie Sanchez Von Borstel at Full Circle Literary Agency represented the artist.
Anne Schwartz at Random House/Schwartz has bought This Baby. That Baby, by Cari Best (l.), illustrated by 2017 Sendak Fellow Rashin Kheiriyeh. In this picture book, two big city babies, who live in buildings opposite one another, wave to each other from their respective windows... until naptime separates them. But how will they reconnect after they wake up? Publication is planned for spring 2024. Melanie Kroupa at Rubin Pfeffer Content negotiated world rights for the author, and the illustrator negotiated world rights, excluding Farsi.
Luana Kay Horry at HarperCollins has acquired world rights to Every Day Is a Holiday, written by antibias-antiracist educator Liz Kleinrock (l.) and illustrated by Chaaya Prabhat. This picture book decenters Christmas as the "holiday season" by introducing various American classmates who celebrate diverse holidays almost every month of the year. Publication is set for fall 2023; Emily Sylvan Kim at Prospect Agency represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Ann Kelley at Random House Studio has bought world rights to Night Market by Seina Wedlick (l.), illustrated by Briana Mukodiri Uchendu. The picture book follows a girl who spends 20 gold coins during one fantastical night at a Nigerian night market. Publication is scheduled for summer 2024; Alice Fugate at Joy Harris Literary Agency represented the author, and Jessica Saint Jean at Jill Grinberg Literary Management represented the illustrator.
Courtney Code and Sara Sproull at Abrams has acquired, at auction, world rights to Why We Dance by Saddle Lake Cree author Deidre Havrelock (l.) and Shoshone-Bannock illustrator Aly McKnight, a picture book celebration of Jingle Dress dancing, and a second untitled picture book. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Amy Tompkins at Transatlantic Agency represented the author, and the illustrator was unagented.
Kate Riggs at Creative Editions has bought world rights to Armando's Island by Marsha Diane Arnold (l.), illustrated by Yvonne Gilbert, a picture book about a man who steadfastly protects his rainforest "island" as a solitary refuge for the animals and plants he loves. Publication is planned for fall 2023; Karen Grencik at Red Fox Literary represented the author, and the illustrator represented herself.
Carol Hinz at Lerner/Millbrook Press has acquired Poop for Breakfast by Sara Levine (l.), illustrated by Florence Weiser. This humorous nonfiction picture book introduces readers to animals that eat poop and shares the science behind why they do this. Publication is set for spring 2023; Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary represented the author, and Alex Gehringer at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Kayla Tostevin at Page Street Kids has bought world rights to Along Came a Radioactive Spider: Strange Steve Ditko and the Creation of Spider-Man by Annie Hunter Eriksen, illustrated by Lee Gatlin (l.), the duo behind With Great Power: The Marvelous Stan Lee. This biography centers on the comic book artist's undercredited role in shaping the Marvel hero. Publication is scheduled for spring 2023; Jennie Kendrick at Red Fox Literary represented the author, and Elena Giovinazzo at Pippin Properties represented the illustrator.
Stacey Barney at Penguin/Nancy Paulsen Books has acquired The Invocations by Krystal Sutherland, a contemporary fantasy thriller about three lonely teenage girls—one cursed, one hunted, one out for revenge—who team up to track down and take out a brutal supernatural killer in a world where only women can use magic and the men who know about it seek to eradicate them. Publication is planned for fall 2023; Catherine Drayton at InkWell Management brokered the deal for North American rights.
Elise Howard at Algonquin Young Readers has bought L.M. Elliott's photo-illustrated historical YA novel Gates. The story centers on a teen girl serving as a Capitol page in 1973—the year of Watergate and President Nixon's unraveling presidency—following the ways in which she and her politically minded friends must evolve their thinking in a time that forces them to question everything, including what they believe about the ERA and Phyllis Schlafly's fear-mongering campaign against it. Publication is set for 2024; Katelyn Detweiler at Jill Grinberg Literary Management did the deal for world rights.
Wendy Loggia at Delacorte has acquired Picture Perfect Boyfriend by Becky Dean (Love & Other Great Expectations), in which an aspiring photographer is forced to play along when, after lying about having the ideal boyfriend, the fictional guy shows up during her family vacation to Maui. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023; Eva Scalzo at Speilburg Literary negotiated the deal for world rights.
Ben Rosenthal at HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen Books has bought, in an exclusive submission, Manifest Atlas by Samuel Miller, a YA thriller set in a forgotten town in the Ozarks, which follows an unlikely group of teenagers who discover a dead body while playing an app-based adventure game. Through the game, they uncover the dark underbelly of their community, and must rely on each other to survive as the murder throws their town into chaos. Publication is slated for summer 2023; Joanna Volpe at New Leaf Literary & Media handled the two-book deal for North American rights.
Emily Feinberg at Roaring Brook Press has acquired world rights to The Light of Resistance by Kirsten W. Larson (l.), author of A True Wonder: The Comic Book Hero Who Changed Everything. Larson's debut middle grade graphic novel is about the heroism of Rose Valland, who, through masterful spying during WWII, managed to help locate and save over 60,000 famous works of art. Barbara McClintock (Adèle and Simon) will illustrate; publication is planned for spring 2023. Lara Perkins at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Jennie Dunham at Dunham Literary represented the illustrator.
Miriam Newman at Candlewick has bought world rights to the first three books in a chapter book series about magic, puppies, and found family by A.R. Capetta (all pronouns) (l.) and Charlene Chua (she/they). Hocus and Pocus stars two puppies adopted from a shelter for Slightly Magical Pets and three young witch's apprentices who, when brought under the same roof, create more trouble than anybody in the cast of gender-diverse characters bargained for. The first book is set for spring 2024; Sara Crowe at Pippin Properties represented the author, and Tracy Marchini at BookEnds represented the illustrator.
Regan Winter while at Little, Brown acquired Gender Identity for Kids by Andy Passchier (What Are Your Words?), a chapter book guide in which the author helps break down what gender is and isn't, what your feelings around gender might mean, and how to let the world know who you are and help others do the same. Andrea Colvin and Aria Balraj will edit. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023; Alex Gehringer at the Bright Agency brokered the deal for world rights.
Nancy Paulsen at Penguin/Nancy Paulsen Books has bought world rights to three picture books by Newbery Honor author Derrick Barnes (top l.) in an exclusive submission. In Like Lava in My Veins, a boy learns how to harness his superpower with the help of a loving teacher, illustrated by Shawn Martinbrough (top r.); it will be published in summer 2023. Santa Has Got to Go, about a visit from Santa that goes on a little too long, is illustrated by Courtney Lovett (bottom l.) and will be published in fall 2023. Brothers, a look at the unbreakable bond between siblings, is illustrated by Shamar Knight-Justice (bottom r.) and will be published in fall 2024. Regina Brooks of Serendipity Literary Agency represented Barnes and Martinborough, Jemiscoe Chambers-Black at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented Lovett, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented Justice.
Lauri Hornik at Dial Books for Young Readers has acquired world rights to three picture book texts by Ying Chang Compestine (l.) (Revolution Is Not a Dinner Party). The Real Story of Ra Pu Zel is a feminist retelling of Rapunzel set in China; it will be illustrated by debut artist Crystal Kung for publication in fall 2023. Growing Up During the Cultural Revolution is a memoir of the author's childhood in China in the 1960s. And the third will be a fictional picture book with content to be determined. The author and illustrator represented themselves.
Neal Porter at Holiday House/Neal Porter Books has bought world rights to Life After Whale by Lynn Brunelle (l.) (Turn This Book into a Beehive), a picture book about a whale whose death starts what is known as a whale fall, a process in which the whale’s carcass becomes a gift to thousands of ocean dwellers for generations. Caldecott and Sibert Honoree Jason Chin will illustrate; publication is slated for fall 2023. Kelly Sonnack at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and the illustrator represented himself.
Cynthia Leitich Smith and Rosemary Brosnan at HarperCollins/Heartdrum have acquired world rights to Aaniin, a picture book by Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibwe citizen Dawn Quigley (l.) (the Jo Jo Makoons series), illustrated by Diné/Chicana painter and illustrator Nani Chacon. In the book, the Ojibwe Seven Grandfathers teachings are used to give children guidelines for living a good life. Publication is planned for summer 2024; Erin Murphy at Erin Murphy Literary represented the author, and the illustrator represented herself.
Martha Mihalick at Greenwillow has bought North American rights to Forever and Always by Brittany J. Thurman (l.), illustrated by Shamar Knight-Justice. In this picture book, as Olivia waits for Daddy to come home, her day drags on until she constructs a plan to tick away the seconds, one idea which becomes a gift for Daddy, to keep him safe always. Publication is set for winter 2024; Marietta B. Zacker at Gallt and Zacker Literary Agency represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Luana Kay Horry has acquired world rights to four titles in the Ally Baby Can series, a rhyming picture book series written by Nyasha Williams (l.) and illustrated by Jade Orlando, which introduces allyship to tiny change-makers. In the first two titles, scheduled for summer 2022, readers will learn how to be effective antiracist and feminist allies. Lary Rosenblatt and Barbara Stewart at 22MediaWorks represented the author, and Anne Moore Armstrong at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Maria Russo at mineditionUS has bought world rights to I'm Me and You're You by Maggie Pouncey (l.), illustrated by Dasha Tolstikova. In this picture book, a mother and child have a playful and profound conversation that touches on identity, place, and love, while walking home through an urban neighborhood. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Jennifer Carlson at Dunow, Carlson & Lerner represented Pouncey, and Tolstikova represented herself.
Dani Valladares at Rodale Kids has acquired world rights to Pocket Full of Sads, a debut picture book by Brad Davidson (l.), illustrated by Rachel Más Davidson. Rabbit is excited to go fishing with Bear, but Bear has too many sads for a fun day out. After trying to cheer him up, they both realize that sometimes just being with a friend is the best help. Publication is planned for spring 2023; Christa Heschke at McIntosh & Otis represented the author and the illustrator.
Kathy Landwehr at Peachtree has bought world rights to Lali's Flip Flops by Indian American author Farhana Zia (l.), illustrated by Stephanie Fizer Coleman. This picture book showcases the rewards of both generosity and of being a good friend. Publication is set for summer 2023; Jennifer Unter at the Unter Agency represented the author, and Anne Moore Armstrong at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Andrea Posner-Sanchez at Little Golden Books has acquired world rights to JaNay Brown-Wood's (l.) picture book biography titled Harriet Tubman, a story about the inspirational life of Harriet Tubman and the amazing things she accomplished despite the many challenges she faced, to be illustrated by Robert Paul, Jr. Publication is scheduled for December 2022; Karen Grencik at Red Fox Literary represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Kristine Enderle at Magination Press has bought world rights to Big Bold Beautiful Me by Jane Yolen (l.) and her granddaughter, Maddison Stemple-Piatt (c.), illustrated by Chloe Burgett (r.). It's a picture book about loving one's body and appreciating our unique characteristics that help us do special things. Publication is slated for fall 2022; Elizabeth Harding at Curtis Brown represented the authors, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Jonah Heller at Peachtree has acquired world rights to All by Myself by Stephanie Shaw (l.), illustrated by debut artist Emilie Gill. Strong-willed and independent, Hen is an absolute boss at getting things done just the way she likes it. But when Fox comes along, Hen's friends must decide whether or not to offer help that Hen hasn't asked for. Publication is planned for spring 2023; Marisa Cleveland at the Seymour Agency represented the author, and the illustrator represented herself.
Christopher Robbins at Familius has bought world rights to Chalk the Walk by Chelsea Tornetto (Gardens Are for Growing). This picture book shows that with a little imagination and a bucket of chalk, an ordinary cityscape can be transformed into a masterpiece. Publication is scheduled for spring 2024; Melissa Richeson at Storm Literary Agency represented the author.