Phoebe Yeh at Crown has acquired Epicenter by inaugural Lincoln Center poet-in-residence Mahogany L. Browne. The YA novel is a collection of interconnected stories about teens in Brooklyn growing up and finding strength, community, and love amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023; Charlotte Sheedy at Charlotte Sheedy Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Emily Meehan at Union Square & Co, with Suzy Capozzi, has bought Wait for Me by bestselling author Sara Shepard, in a preempt/exclusive. The YA novel follows Casey Rhodes who relies on her chameleon-like ability to successfully navigate school, work, and an exciting new romance until she starts seeing visions that may belong to someone else. Publication is planned for fall 2022; Richard Abate at 3 Arts brokered the deal for world rights.
Wendy Loggia at Underlined has acquired Addie Woolridge's The Homecoming War. When plunging enrollment forces two rival high schools to merge, two class presidents must work together to make rival schools unite. And when it turns out that they don't only not hate each other—but might have crushes on each other—they'll both have to figure out what they each want and where their loyalties lie. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Nalini Akolekar at Spencerhill Associates handled the deal for world rights.
Sara Goodman at Wednesday Books has bought North American rights to Courtney Summers's new queer thriller, I'm the Girl, based loosely on the Epstein case and appealing to fans of Mare of Easttown and My Dark Vanessa by way of Gillian Flynn. When 16-year-old Georgia finds the body of a girl at a members-only resort, she teams up with the girl's older sister to find the killer, and is thrown into a world of unimaginable privilege and wealth—and the fight for her life. Publication is set for fall 2022; Faye Bender at the Book Group negotiated the deal.
Elizabeth Lynch at HarperTeen has acquired Bellegarde, a YA historical rom-com with a modern twist by debut author Jamie Lilac. Pitched as She's All That reimagined in 18th-century France, a second-born son makes a deal: if he can turn the unapproachable baker's daughter into the winner of the Court Ball, making her the most desired bachelorette in Paris, he inherits the family fortune, but his target has plans of her own. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023; Kristy Hunter at the Knight Agency brokered the deal for North American rights.
Gretchen Durning at Razorbill has bought The Memory Eater by Rebecca Mahoney, author of The Valley and the Flood. In this contemporary YA novel, 17-year-old Alana has inherited the family business of keeping a memory-devouring monster fed and keeping it locked up. But when her mistakes set it free, she’ll have to face her own forgotten past in order to save her town—and herself—from the monster on the loose. Publication is planned for spring 2023; Hannah Fergesen at KT Literary did the deal for world rights.
Kendra Levin at Simon & Schuster has preempted world rights (along with S&S Children's Books UK) to Kiyash Monsef's debut novel Once There Was, about an Iranian American girl who, after her father is murdered, discovers that he was secretly a veterinarian to magical creatures out of the bedtime tales he told her as a child, and that she must take up his mantle despite the many dangers. Described as All Creatures Great and Small meets Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the upper middle grade novel is slated for spring 2023. Katelyn Detweiler at Jill Grinberg Literary Management brokered the seven-figure, two-book deal.
Stacey Barney at Penguin/Nancy Paulsen Books has acquired Caroline Starr Rose's middle grade novel in verse, Fire Finder. When she turns 13, Opal, who lives in a fire tower in New Mexico's wilderness, will train as the fourth-generation female fire lookout in her family, but she's keeping a secret—she's afraid of fire. Alone in the tower, Opal spies smoke after a lightning strike and realizes she must face it on her own. Publication is set for spring 2024; Tracey Adams at Adams Literary negotiated the deal for world rights.
Mary Kate Castellani at Bloomsbury has bought Gillian McDunn's When Sea Becomes Sky, a middle grade contemporary novel that follows 11-year-old Bex and her brother Davey, who discover a mysterious statue in the Carolina coastal saltmarsh near their home. But when their corner of the island is threatened by development, they must work together to protect the land, save the art, and hold onto what's most important. Publication is scheduled for winter 2023; Marietta Zacker at Gallt & Zacker did the deal for world rights.
Anne Schwartz at Random House/Anne Schwartz Books has acquired The Green Piano, a picture book by Grammy Award-winning singer Roberta Flack (l.), with writer Tonya Bolden (c.). This autobiographical story, illustrated by debut artist Hayden Goodman (r.), recounts how young Roberta grew up in a home surrounded by music and love: it all started with a beat-up piano that her father found in a junkyard, repaired, and painted green. Publication is planned for spring 2023; Jennifer Lyons at the Jennifer Lyons Literary Agency represented the authors for world English rights, and Jessica Saint Jean at Jill Grinberg Literary Management represented the illustrator for world rights.
Mark Podesta at Henry Holt has bought, at auction, world rights to Roz Maclean's More Than Words, a picture book that follows a very quiet boy as he digs tunnels in the playground to connect with his peers, celebrating the many ways people communicate from sign language to speech devices to art, play and everything in between. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Naomi Davis at BookEnds brokered the six-figure, two-book deal.
Angus Yuen-Killick of Red Comet Press has acquired world rights to Walter Takes a While by Ann Kim Ha, a picture book about an unusual crocodile who hides in the grassy swamp, not because he's hunting for prey, but because he's achingly introverted—even around his friends. Publication is set for spring 2023; Anna Olswanger at Olswanger Literary did the deal.
Megan Ilnitzki at HarperCollins has bought, at auction, world rights to The Stocking Stuffer by Holley Merriweather. The tale introduces a little mouse with a big heart who becomes Santa's special helper in order to ensure that all stockings are filled on Christmas Eve; Stephanie Graegin will illustrate. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; Steven Malk at Writers House represented the author and the illustrator.
Emma Ledbetter at Abrams has acquired world rights to Milo Walking by Bunnicula author James Howe (l.), a picture book following a curious boy and his mother as they walk around their neighborhood, pausing to observe the things they see; Sakika Kikuchi will illustrate. Publication is planned for fall 2023; Amy Berkower at Writers House represented the author, and Jessica Saint Jean at Jill Grinberg Literary Management represented the illustrator.
Laura Godwin at Macmillan/Godwin Books has bought, in a preempt, Memory Garden, the debut picture book by Iranian American novelist Zohreh Ghahremani (l.) (Sky of Red Poppies; The Moon Daughter), illustrated by her daughter, Susie Ghahremani (Stack the Cats; What Will Grow). In it, a girl's playful garden adventures with her grandmother explore deeper themes of immigration and change. Publication is set for early 2024; Lilly Ghahremani at Full Circle Literary represented author and illustrator in the deal for world rights.
Allyn Johnston at S&S/Beach Lane Books has acquired world rights to The Boy Who Said Wow!, written by Todd Boss (l.) and illustrated by Rashin Kheiriyeh, a picture book inspired by the true story of Ronan, a nonverbal boy whose grandfather took him to a Mozart concert in Boston. As the last note faded, Ronan's loud and spontaneous "Wow!" reverberated throughout the concert hall to the delight of everyone present and was caught on a radio recording that went viral across the globe. Publication is slated for summer 2023; Rubin Pfeffer at Rubin Pfeffer Content represented both author and illustrator.
Connie Hsu at Roaring Brook has bought world rights to Melanie Conklin's (l.) debut picture book When You Have to Wait, illustrated by Leah Hong. This story empathizes with the struggles of being patient, while celebrating in the joys that can also come from waiting. Publication is scheduled for spring 2024; Elena Giovinazzo at Pippin Properties represented the author, and Kirsten Hall at Catbird Productions represented the illustrator.
Kayla Tostevin at Page Street Kids has acquired world rights to When an Elephant Hears NO by Dazzle Ng (l.), illustrated by Estrela Lourenço, a little elephant's romp of encounters with the tiny, tricky word and its many nuanced meanings. Publication is planned for winter 2024; Lisa Amstutz at Storm Literary represented the author, and James McGowan at BookEnds Literary represented the illustrator.
Barb McNally at Sleeping Bear has bought world rights to Do Not Eat This Book by Beth Kander (l.), illustrated by Mike Moran. This rhyming read-aloud about holiday foods emphasizes the joy of the Jewish experience, featuring recipes and Yiddish humor. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Allison Hellegers at Stimola Literary Studio represented the author, and Susan Penny at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Jonathan Eaton at Tilbury House has acquired world rights to Light Speaks by Christine Layton (l.), illustrated by Luciana Navarro Powell, a picture book about how light has served mankind from the start of time. Publication is set for winter 2023; the author was unagented, and Deborah Warren at East/West Literary represented the illustrator.
Lisa Rosinsky at Barefoot Books has bought world rights to Hana's Hundreds of Hijabs by Razeena Omar Gutta (l.), illustrated by Manal Mirza (Zahra's Blessing); Rosinsky and Autumn Allen will edit. When Hana's overflowing collection of hijabs gets out of hand, she comes up with a clever, creative plan. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; Shari Maurer at the Stringer Literary Agency represented the author, and the illustrator represented herself.
Frances Figart at Great Smoky Mountains Association has acquired world rights to Mabel Meets a Black Bear by Frances Figart (l.), illustrated by Jesse White. Twin sisters learn to live safely with bears through their unexpected interactions with a black bear in the Smokies. Publication is planned for spring 2023; the author represented herself, and Paige Terlip at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the illustrator.
Alice Jerman at HarperCollins has acquired Miranda Sun's debut YA contemporary fantasy, If I Have to Be Haunted, in a two-book, six-figure deal at auction. A Chinese American teen reluctantly embraces her ghost-speaking heritage to resurrect her nemesis, the local golden boy, from an otherworldly snake bite, rekindling a multi-generational feud—and maybe falling in love with him—in the process. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023 and summer 2024 respectively; Paige Terlip at Andrea Brown Literary Agency brokered the world English deal.
Mara Delgado Sánchez at Wednesday Books has bought, at auction, North American rights for Break Wide the Sea and Strike Down the Sun, a YA fantasy duology by Sara Holland. In a world fueled by magic harvested from whales, Annie Fairfax is heiress to its most eminent whaling company, until her fiance betrays her and takes over. Forced into hiding, Annie must place her trust in a young renegade captain who promises to restore her to power if she helps him find the legendary underwater city of the whalers' ancient enemies, the deadly finfolk—but he's keeping secrets too. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Peter Knapp at Park & Fine Literary and Media did the deal.
Aimee Friedman at Scholastic has acquired world rights to Whatever After author Sarah Mlynowski's (l.) new middle grade series called Best Wishes. Pitched as The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants for middle graders, Best Wishes is about a magical, wish-granting bracelet that gets mailed around the country to three girls, connecting them all, and teaching them that getting what you wish for isn't always the best thing, with each book focused on a new girl. The first book will be written by Mlynowski; the second book will be co-written with Debbie Rigaud (c.); and the third will be co-written with Christina Soontornvat (r.). Publication of book 1 is set for September 2022; Laura Dail at Laura Dail Literary Agency represented Mlynowski and Rigaud, and Stephanie Fretwell-Hill at Fox Literary represented Soontornvat.
Alison Weiss at Pixel+Ink has acquired Moongarden and two additional titles in the middle grade sci-fi series Plotting the Stars by debut author Michelle A. Barry, pitched as The Secret Garden meets City of Ember, in which a lonely girl at a lunar prep school discovers a garden that shouldn't exist, magic she shouldn't have, and secrets the government buried long ago. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022; Moe Ferrara at BookEnds Literary brokered the deal for world rights.
Kait Feldmann at Clarion has bought Into the Bewilderness, the debut graphic novel by Gus Gordon (Herman and Rosie), the short-sighted adventure of a bear named Luis and a mole named Pablo who inexplicably receive Broadway tickets and venture bravely into the unknown of the city on a journey dotted with surprises, nonsensical revelations and silly musical interludes. Publication is slated for 2024; Charlie Olsen at InkWell Management represented the author for world English rights; ANZ rights went to Ana Vivas at Hardie Grant.
Liesa Abrams at Labyrinth Road has acquired the debut middle grade novel Daydreamer by Cameron Roberson, writing as Rob Cameron, about 12-year-old Charles who lives in an apartment building that in his mind is populated with faerie creatures. Charles struggles with dyslexia and bullies at school, and his life gets even more difficult when a new family moves into the apartment above his, a father and son who are as intriguing as they are dangerous, and Charles must face some hard decisions about whom to trust and what to believe. Publication is set for summer 2024; Barry Goldblatt at Barry Goldblatt Literary did the deal for world English rights.
Erin Haggett at Scholastic Canada and Emily Seife at Scholastic have bought world rights to Ronnie Riley's middle grade debut Jude Saves the World, in which a queer, nonbinary 12-year-old navigates the complexities of identity and friendship as they befriend the ex-popular girl at school, try to start a safe space club at their local library, and come out to their old-fashioned grandparents. It will publish in spring 2023; Andrea Walker and Jennifer Azantian at Azantian Literary Agency negotiated the deal.
Whitney Leopard at Random House Graphic has acquired, in an exclusive submission, Jose Pimienta's (Twin Cities) middle grade contemporary graphic novel, Halfway to Somewhere. Ave has just moved to Kansas from Mexicali, Mexico with only half their family, in a story about what it means to be whole, the importance of memories, and the challenge of distance. Publication is planned for summer 2024; Elizabeth Bennett represented the author for world rights.
Celia Lee at S&S has bought, in a preempt, professional lion dancer and cartoonist Cai Tse's debut middle grade graphic novel, Lion Dancers, about the cultural ancestry of Chinese lion dance and its traditions, told through the lens of a pair of former best friends, now rivals in middle school, competing for their lion dance team's MVP position. Publication is scheduled for 2024; Britt Siess at Britt Siess Creative Management brokered the deal for world rights.
Tracey Keevan at Union Square Kids has acquired, at auction, the graphic novel Alterations by animated feature story artist Raymond Xu. For fans of Gene Luen Yang's American Born Chinese and Svetlana Chmakova's Awkward, this coming-of-age story features middle-schooler Kevin Lee, who feels invisible in two different cultures. A spring 2023 publication is slated; Albert Lee at UTA sold world rights.
Erinn Pascal at Andrews McMeel has bought Skip!, a middle grade graphic novel by U.K. debut author-illustrator Sarah Burgess, pitched as Raina Telgemeier meets slice-of-life manga. Anxious poet Jay joins a Double Dutch team and uses their rhymes to navigate complicated feelings surrounding their first best friendship. Publication is planned for fall 2023; Jas Perry at KT Literary did the deal for world rights.
Sarah Ketchersid at Candlewick has acquired, in a multiple offer situation, world rights to Ava Lin by Vicky Fang, former Google product designer and author of the Layla and the Bots and the Friendbots series. The illustrated chapter book/graphic novel hybrid series features an optimistic and creative six-year-old Chinese American girl with a knack for getting into—and out of—trouble. Publication is set for spring 2024, fall 2024, and spring 2025; Elizabeth Bennett at the Transatlantic Agency negotiated the deal.
Lauri Hornik at Penguin/Rocky Pond Books has bought, in an exclusive submission, world rights to ABC and You and Me, written and illustrated by Corinna Luyken. This picture book invites readers big and small to practice the alphabet by moving, stretching, and bending to create uppercase and lowercase letters. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023; Steven Malk at Writers House handled the deal for world rights.
Christy Ottaviano at Little, Brown/Ottaviano has acquired, in an exclusive submission, world rights to My Wish for the World, written and illustrated by Kristine A. Lombardi. This picture book delivers a hopeful message about all the ways we can wish for kindness in the world and actualize those wishes, such as caring for all those who need help. Publication is slated for winter 2023; the author represented herself.
Dana Chidiac at Henry Holt has bought, at auction, Mole by Geisel Honoree Maya Tatsukawa, a picture book about an introverted mole's long underground journey to attend a dear friend's big party, as well as the jittery, maze-like feelings of anxiety that accompany Mole along the way. Publication is planned for fall 2023; Wendi Gu at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates brokered the two-book deal for world English rights.
Emily Feinberg at Roaring Brook has acquired world rights to A Terrible Place for a Nest, a picture book by Sara Levine (l.), illustrated by Erika Meza. It tells the story of a boy whose adjustment to a new house is contrasted with a family of mourning doves, who have chosen a most inconvenient spot for their nest. Publication is set for winter 2024; Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author, and Claire Cartey at Holroyde Cartey represented the illustrator.
Michelle Frey at Knopf has bought world rights to That Always Happens Sometimes by Kiley Frank (l.), illustrated by K-Fai Steele. This picture book is a day in the life of a "can't-sit-still" boy who's sometimes impulsive, sometimes distracted, sometimes forgetful, but always, always trying his best. Publication is scheduled for summer 2024; Miriam Altshuler at DeFiore and Company represented the author, and Erica Rand Silverman at Stimola Literary Studio represented the illustrator.
Julia McCarthy at Atheneum has acquired world rights to Masquerade for Grandpa by debut author Ana Otaru (l.), in which a girl honors her beloved grandfather who has passed away and celebrates his memory during the West African festival of Masquerade; Hayden Goodman will illustrate. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Kayla Cichello at Upstart Crow Literary represented the author, and Jessica Saint Jean at Jill Grinberg Literary Management represented the illustrator.
Chris Harbo at Capstone has bought world English rights to Carol Gordon Ekster's (l.) Trucker Kid, a picture book about a girl whose pride in her father's work as a truck driver wins the hearts and minds of her classmates; Russ Cox will illustrate. Publication is set for spring 2023; Kaitlyn Sanchez at Context Literary Agency represented the author, and Jennie Kendrick at Red Fox Literary represented the illustrator.
Emma Parkin at Barefoot Books has acquired world rights to Harvest Days: Giving Thanks Around the World by Kate DePalma (l.), illustrated by Martina Peluso, the creators of Let's Celebrate, with Autumn Allen editing, about harvest traditions from 12 world cultures. Publication is planned for fall 2022; the author represented herself, and Vickie Savanella at Advocate Art represented the illustrator.
Sue Tarsky at Albert Whitman has bought world rights to Cicada Symphony by Sue Fliess (l.) (Goldilocks and the Three Engineers), illustrated by Gareth Lucas. This informational picture book shows the lifecycle of cicadas, with facts about these insects portrayed in words as well as illustrations. Publication is scheduled for spring 2023; Jennifer Unter at the Unter Agency represented the author, and Alice Wilkinson at Meiklejohn represented the illustrator.
Joni Sussman at Kar-Ben has acquired world rights to The Mexican Dreidel by Linda Elovitz Marshall (l.) and Ilan Stavans (c.), illustrated by Maria Mola (r.). This picture book shines a light on Mexican Jewish culture as young Danielito celebrates Hanukkah/Janucá in Mexico City with his grandmother. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Christa Heschke at McIntosh & Otis represented the authors, and Robbin Brosterman at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.