Rebecca Kuss at Disney/Rick Riordan Presents has acquired, in an exclusive submission, two untitled YA horror novels by Judy I. Lin (A Magic Steeped in Poison). Pulling from the darkest corners of Taiwanese folklore and urban legend, the first story follows a Taiwanese Canadian teenager in Vancouver's Chinatown who gets caught up in an epic battle of monsters, power, and destiny as she fights to save her sister from possession by an otherworldly evil spirit. Publication is slated for October 2024; Rachel Brooks at BookEnds Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Ardi Alspach at Union Square Kids has bought, in a preempt, YA contemporary novel Red by Annie Cardi (The Chance You Won't Return). Pitched as a nod to The Scarlet Letter in the #MeToo era, for readers of Speak and Grown, Red follows teenager Tess as her very personal decision goes public and, rejected and harassed, she seeks solace in music and uses her voice to end the cycle of abuse in her small town. Publication is planned for January 2024; Laura Crockett at TriadaUS did the deal for world rights.
Kiara Valdez at First Second has acquired at auction Michelle Wong's debut YA graphic novel Terminal Hope, for fans of Marissa Meyer and Marie Lu, about an orphaned teen who must team up with a rogue android to survive the underbelly of mankind's last remaining sanctuary and thwart city enforcers when he becomes a target for powers he unwillingly received. Publication is scheduled for 2026; Thao Le at Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency sold world rights.
Camille Kellogg at Bloomsbury has bought debut author Kelsea Yu's It's Only a Game, a YA thriller in which Marina Chan and her friends are blackmailed into playing a video game with deadly consequences that forces them to lie, trespass, and steal in real life. But the deeper into the game they get, the more Marina realizes that whoever is pulling the strings knows too much about the past she's tried to leave behind. Publication is set for spring 2024; Jennifer Azantian at Azantian Literary sold world rights.
Meg Gaertner at Flux has acquired The Merciless King of Moore High, a YA contemporary fantasy pitched as Riverdale meets Game of Thrones by Lily Sparks (Teen Killers Club). After adults morph into monsters and everyone under 18 barricades themselves inside their schools to survive, Kay is cast out when she learns a dangerous secret and must seek asylum at her school's hard-partying rival, which has adopted the neo-feudal trappings of a popular video game and is ruled by the charismatic but ruthless King Max. Publication is slated for spring 2024; Stacia Decker at Dunow, Carlson, & Lerner brokered the deal for world English rights.
Lydia Gregovic at Delacorte Press has bought debut author Keshe Chow's The Girl with No Reflection, a dark YA fantasy inspired by Chinese folklore in which a young woman travels to the royal palace for her betrothal to the crown prince, only to discover an eerie parallel world existing in secret within the palace mirrors—and a host of living reflections dwelling inside it. Publication is planned for summer 2024; Tricia Lawrence at Erin Murphy Literary Agency handled the deal for world rights.
Karen Lotz at Candlewick Press has acquired three books by Oscar-winning animator, writer, and director Alan Barillaro. The first, a middle-grade novel called Where the Water Takes Us, is a coming-of-age story about a girl who learns to confront her anxiety and fears, rely on her own strength, and accept the friendship of a new boy in her life when she is sent to stay with her grandparents during her mother's difficult pregnancy. Publication is set for May 2023; Janine Kamouh at William Morris Endeavor sold North American and U.K. rights.
David Saylor and Cassandra Pelham Fulton at Scholastic/Graphix have bought, in an exclusive submission, Bone: More Tall Tales, a graphic novel set in Jeff Smith's world of Bone. In stories written by Jeff Smith (l.) and Tom Sniegoski, and illustrated by Jeff Smith, Stan Sakai, Katie Cook, Matt Smith, and Scott Brown, the Bone cousins and their Rat Creature pal share stories around a campfire with a group of young scouts. Publication is scheduled for fall 2023; Vijaya Iyer at Cartoon Books negotiated the deal.
Suzy Capozzi at Union Square Kids has acquired, in a preempt, Rhonda Roumani's middle grade novel Tagging Freedom. The story follows a 13-year-old Syrian graffiti artist at the beginning of the Syrian Revolution, who, after a close call with the secret police, is sent to live with his Syrian-American cousin in a small town in Massachusetts. Together, they discover the power of activism and the courage it takes to stand up for freedom of speech everywhere. Publication is planned for fall 2023; Brent Taylor at Triada US sold world rights.
Maya Marlette and Sam Palazzi at Scholastic have bought Nikki Shannon Smith's Stranded, pitched as a contemporary My Side of the Mountain, a middle grade survival story in which an 11-year-old girl must learn the skills needed to stay alive after a winter storm leaves her stranded alone in the Adirondack mountains. Publication is slated for fall 2024; Jennifer March Soloway at Andrea Brown Literary Agency did the deal for world rights.
Grace Scheipeter at Oni Press has acquired world rights to Dracula's Brunch Club, a debut middle grade graphic novel by Brian Gonsar (l.), illustrated by Keenan Gaybba. In this origin story of why vampires crave blood, Count Dracula risks losing his prized brunch club when all the jelly in the land mysteriously disappears, robbing the vampires of his famous energy-giving, blood orange jelly donuts. Publication is scheduled for fall 2025; Stacey Graham at 3 Seas Literary brokered the deal.
Alison Deering at Capstone has bought the first four titles in Stephanie Faris's new chapter book series, Gabby Ghost Hunter, about a scientifically driven girl who doesn't believe in ghosts and sets out to disprove the "evidence" her father finds at each location on his ghost hunting show. Through her investigations, however, 10-year-old Gabby learns that not all things are able to be explained. Publication of the first title, The Ghost at the Inn, is set for fall 2023; Natalie Lakosil at Irene Goodman Literary Agency sold world rights.
Winsome Bingham at Reycraft has acquired world rights for the chapter book series Martina by Mariana Llanos. Book one, Martina and Her Bright Star, follows six-year-old Martina as she learns how to make sense of life now that her beloved Papi is gone, and discovers that she doesn't have to fly to the stars to be with Papi. Publication is slated for spring 2025, with the second and third installments to follow in spring 2026 and spring 2027. Sera Rivers while at Martin Literary & Media Management negotiated the deal.
Siobhan Ciminera at Simon Spotlight has bought Go Go Dino! by Kaz Windness, a rhyming book for emerging readers in which dinosaurs on roller skates, bikes, and trikes race for prehistoric glory; Lisa Rao will edit. Publication is planned for summer 2024; Timothy Travaglini at Transatlantic Agency handled the two-book deal for world rights.
Jill Davis at Astra/Hippo Park acquired world rights to Rabbit's Feat by Barney Saltzberg (Beautiful Oops!), in which a rabbit overhears a conversation each spring between a cactus and rock who wish to be closer together but can't accomplish it on their own. It's scheduled for fall 2024; Rosemary Stimola at Stimola Literary Studio brokered the deal.
Dana Chidiac while at Dial bought world rights to Little Bird Laila by Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature winner Kelly Yang (l.), illustrated by Xindi Yan; Nancy Mercado will edit. The picture book shows how Laila acts as a translator for her parents who speak Chinese, and how she begins to teach them English as well. Publication is set for summer 2024; Tina Dubois at ICM Partners represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Danielle Collins at S&S/Beach Lane Books has acquired world rights to Saturday Morning at the 'Shop, a picture book by debut author Keenan Jones (l.), illustrated by Ken Daley. When a boy spends the day at his local barbershop, he discovers the many important roles the 'Shop plays as a space for Black culture and community. Publication is planned for fall 2024; Savannah Brooks at KT Literary represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Katie Scott at Kids Can Press has bought world rights to What Lolo Wants by Cristina Oxtra (l.), illustrated by Jamie Bauza. Maria loves to spend her days drawing with her grandfather, Lolo. But when Lolo begins to forget things, Maria must come up with a creative way to figure out what Lolo wants. Publication is slated for fall 2024; Tracy Marchini at BookEnds represented the author, and Alex Gehringer at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Frances Gilbert at Doubleday has acquired world rights to Elijah's Easter Suit by Brentom Jackson (l.), illustrated by Emmanuel Boateng. Elijah is on a mission to find the perfect church outfit for Easter; failed attempts in his town's stores leave Elijah crushed, but a conversation with two community elders gives Elijah the courage to create his own Easter masterpiece that tells his story with style. Publication is set for spring 2024. Charlotte Wenger at Prospect Agency represented the author, and Justin Rucker at Shannon Associates represented the illustrator.
Tracy Mack at Scholastic Press has bought world rights to Wash Day by Tanisia "Tee" Moore (l.), illustrated by Coretta Scott King Honoree Raissa Figueroa, a picture book about a sacred rite of passage in Black culture—the hair wash day routine—and on Saturday, it goes down in Tasha's house… if Momma can catch her. Publication is scheduled for spring 2025; Jemiscoe Chambers-Black at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Natascha Morris at the Tobias Agency represented the illustrator.
Lisa Sandell at Scholastic has acquired, at auction, author-illustrator Mia Araujo's Afia in the Land of Wonders, a West African-inspired reimagining of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, which follows 16-year-old Afia as she must choose between staying in her isolated home with her beloved twin sister and journeying into a magical yet dangerous land to discover who she is on her own. Publication is slated for fall 2024; Regina Brooks at Serendipity Literary Agency sold world rights.
Jessica Garrison at Dial has bought The Quiet and the Loud by Helena Fox (How It Feels to Float), about 18-year-old George, who only feels calm and steady when rowing or with new crush Calliope, but her best friend's pregnancy, her estranged father's reappearance, and a looming wildfire threaten to overwhelm her. Publication is planned for spring 2023; Catherine Drayton at Inkwell Management brokered the deal for world English rights excluding ANZ.
Alexa Pastor at Simon & Schuster has acquired, in an exclusive submission, Marisa Kanter's Finally Fitz, a queer YA romcom about a fashion influencer reeling from a breakup who enlists her former best friend to pose as her boyfriend during a summer program in New York City to make her ex-girlfriend jealous, only to realize that the relationship she wants to repair might be the one she's faking. Publication is set for spring 2024; Taylor Haggerty at Root Literary negotiated the deal for world rights.
Rachel Diebel at Feiwel and Friends has bought Sam Prentice's debut YA graphic novel duology Arcana, a queer contemporary fantasy about a group of friends who are unknowing carriers of a magical curse and must fight to discover the truth and save themselves from being consumed by magic. Publication is scheduled for winter 2025; Katie Blagden at Bright Literary did the two-book, six-figure deal for world rights.
Maggie Rosenthal at Viking has acquired, at auction, Stephanie Willing's debut middle grade, West of the Sea, as well as an untitled second book. Paleontology-loving Haven West's mom disappears after a long struggle with depression right as Haven discovers she's inherited a monstrous family secret: she can turn into an amphibious cryptid. Haven, her sister, and a new friend set off on a road trip to find her mom and get some answers. Publication is slated for summer 2023; Alexandra Levick at Writers House brokered the deal for North American rights.
Ruth Linka at Orca Books has bought North American English rights to The Anxious Exile of Sara Salt, a contemporary middle grade by Gabrielle Prendergast (Zero Repeat Forever). This epistolary novel centers on 10-year-old Sara Salt, who has selective mutism and anxiety; she copes by writing letters to her prematurely born brother, revealing how she ended up at the center of a fight for the rights of the housing insecure and demonstrating her growing understanding of the importance of community and the power of her voice. Publication is set for fall 2025; Natascha Morris and HB Steadham at Tobias Literary Agency did the deal.
Alexandra Aceves at Holiday House has acquired, in an exclusive submission, Detective Dogs Are on the Case by Alison Pearce Stevens (Rhinos in Nebraska), a nonfiction middle grade book about incredible conservation projects that utilize working dogs. Publication is planned for fall 2024; Alexandra Weiss at Azantian Literary Agency handled the deal for world rights.
Charlie Ilgunas at Little Bee/Yellow Jacket has bought Farming Is Female: Twenty Women Shaking Up the Field by Rachel Sarah, a nonfiction middle grade title featuring a diverse collection of 20 women pioneering modern farms, with a focus on food justice and the deconstruction of the mythical image of "Old MacDonald." Publication is scheduled for spring 2025; Eric Myers at Myers Literary Management sold world rights.
Elizabeth Lee at Penguin Workshop has acquired world rights to author-illustrator Andrea Cruz Floren's debut picture book, In the Groves, about a girl who visits her abuelo at work in California's orange groves and gets a firsthand glimpse at the place that has inspired many of her family's legendary tall tales. Publication is slated for fall 2024; Adria Goetz at P.S. Literary Agency brokered the two-book deal.
Kayla Tostevin at Page Street Kids has bought Agent Unicorn by debut author-illustrator Jenny Alvarado, in which intrepid agency janitor Unicorn follows his detective dreams by bumbling through a lost pet case. Publication is planned for fall 2024; Lane Clarke at ArtHouse Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Ann Kelley at Random House Studio has acquired, in an exclusive submission, world rights to Noodles on a Bicycle by Kyo Maclear (l.), illustrated by Ezra Jack Keats Illustrator Award winner Gracey Zhang. This picture book follows Tokyo's bicycle food deliverers, the demae, who balanced towering trays of steaming hot noodles on their shoulders while navigating crowded city streets. Publication is set for fall 2024; Jackie Kaiser at Westwood Creative Artists represented the author, and Hannah Mann at Writers House represented the illustrator.
Carolina Ortiz at HarperCollins has bought world rights to Into the Mighty Sea by Arlene Abundis (l.), illustrated by Cynthia Alonso, which follows the story of a Cuban American girl named Mariel, whose emotions are a big sea of color that she must learn to sail through or get lost in the swells. Publication is scheduled for summer 2024; Tara Gonzalez at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author, and Erica Rand Silverman at Stimola Literary Studio represented the illustrator.
Tamar Brazis at Viking has acquired world rights to Batter Up for the First Day of School by Bethany Hegedus (l.), about a baseball-loving family running through the playbook to make the first day of school a grand slam, illustrated by Pura Belpré Honor artist Nomar Perez. Publication is slated for spring 2025; Alexandra Penfold at Upstart Crow Literary represented the author, and Lori Nowicki at Painted Words represented the illustrator.
Emma Ledbetter at Abrams has bought world rights to The Band in Our Basement by Kelly J. Baptist (l.), illustrated by Jenin Mohammed, in which a pair of siblings—who are supposed to be in bed—discover a jazz band in their basement, and are delighted by its surprise members. Publication is planned for fall 2024; Hannah Mann at Writers House represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Cheryl Eissing at Flamingo Books has acquired world rights to A Book Is a Friend by Kaz Windness (l.), a rhyming text that introduces future readers to a lifetime friendship with books, illustrated by Heather Brockman Lee. Publication is scheduled for fall 2024; Timothy Travaglini at Transatlantic Agency represented the author, and Deborah Warren at East/West Agency represented the illustrator.
Carolyn Yoder at Astra/Calkins Creek has bought North American English rights to Tomatoes on Trial: The Fruit vs. Vegetable Supreme Court Showdown, a nonfiction picture book by Lindsay H. Metcalf (l.), illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham, about the real-life Supreme Court case that established once and for all whether a tomato is a fruit or a vegetable. A fall 2025 publication is planned; Emily Mitchell at Wernick & Pratt Agency represented the author, and the illustrator represented himself.
Ginny O'Donnell at Cottage Door Press has acquired world rights to Barn in Winter: Safe and Warm on the Farm by Chambrae Griffith (l.), illustrated by Taia Morley, a picture book about Barn welcoming all the animals into cozy safety as snowy fields and muddy pens are left behind. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Mary Cummings at Great River Literary represented the author, and Nicole Tugeau at Tugeau 2 represented the illustrator.