Rebecca Kuss at Disney-Hyperion has acquired, at auction, Last Tang Standing author Lauren Ho's YA debut, Bite Me, Royce Taslim. Pitched as The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel meets Loveboat, Taipei, this enemies-to-lovers novel dives into the lives of Kuala Lumpur's elite (and not-so elite). A career-ending injury destroys track star Agnes Chan's hopes of a much-needed college scholarship, putting her on a journey through the underbelly of Malaysian stand-up comedy, and directly into the path of her archnemesis: the annoyingly perfect, ridiculously wealthy, and disgustingly handsome Royce Taslim. Publication is set for spring 2024; Katelyn Detweiler at Jill Grinberg Literary Management did the two-book deal for North American rights.
Sarah Barley and Sydney Jeon at Flatiron Books have bought North American rights to Kristen McCallum's Free Girls. The debut novel follows Jas, a teen girl adjusting to her new home, new family, and new life while keeping the secret that she's spent the last year in a juvenile detention center. Publication is tentatively scheduled for fall 2024; Sara Shandler and Joelle Hobeika negotiated the deal for North American rights.
Vicki Lame and Vanessa Aguirre at Wednesday Books have acquired, in a two-book deal, at auction, The Good Vampire's Guide to Blood and Boyfriends by debut author Jamie D'Amato. In this YA rom-com, the last thing Brennan expects after surviving serious depression is to wake up as a vampire. Now he has to navigate not only college, but also bloodthirsty instincts, vampire clans who may not be as "good" as they claim, and feelings for the cute boy who is helping him keep his secret. Publication is planned for winter 2025; John Cusick at Folio Literary Management sold North American rights.
Alyza Liu at Simon & Schuster has bought debut author Robin Wasley's Dead Things Are Closer Than They Appear. Seventeen-year-old Sid Spencer lives in a tourist town where magic lies buried beneath the earth, but other than that, has a completely ordinary existence—until the day her brother goes missing and the ground cracks opens, unleashing the magic and the dead things within. Publication is slated for spring 2024; Janine Kamouh at William Morris Endeavor brokered the deal for North American rights.
Tamara Grasty at Page Street has acquired The Final Curse of Ophelia Cray by debut author Christine Calella, a fantastical YA adventure about the bonds of sisterhood set against the ambiguous morality of the high seas for fans of Our Flag Means Death. Publication is scheduled for winter 2024; Laurel Symonds while at the Bent Agency negotiated the deal for world English rights.
Simon Boughton at Norton Young Readers has bought, at auction, White House Clubhouse, the first installment of a debut series by Sean O'Brien, former speechwriter to then-Vice President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden, and former special assistant to President Barack Obama. Two presidential daughters discover a secret underground clubhouse in the White House that transports them to 1903, where they must partner with the children of Theodore Roosevelt for a perilous train adventure to save a 2,000-year-old tree—and plant the seeds of the National Park System. Publication is set for fall 2023; Reiko Davis at DeFiore and Company did the three-book deal for world English rights.
Alyssa Miele at HarperCollins/Quill Tree has acquired Claire Swinarski's next two untitled middle grade novels. The first is a contemporary story told non-sequentially a la The Friendship List meets 500 Days of Summer, following two girls who have become best friends over the course of six summers, while getting flashbacks into what contributed to their present-day falling out. The second novel is a contemporary/historical dual narrative that follows a modern-day mystery with roots leading back to the French Resistance WWII era. Publication is tentatively slated for fall 2024 and fall 2025, respectively. Alex Slater at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates brokered the deal for North American rights.
Alison Weiss at Pixel+Ink has bought the first two books in Joshua Smeaton's debut middle grade graphic novel series, Woodland Hills, pitched as Be Prepared meets Zootopia, in which a loner skunk and a popular new kid bear navigate the challenges and triumphs of the playing field, classroom, and beyond to forge an unlikely friendship. Publication of the first book is planned for summer 2025; Janna Morishima at Janna Co. handled the deal for world rights.
Christine Collins at Disney Hyperion has acquired, in a two-book deal, The Last Rhee Witch, a middle grade novel by debut author Jenna Lee-Yun. Twelve-year-old Korean American Ronnie Miller agrees to attend summer camp to show her dad and her best friend she can be the "normal" kid they want her to be. But while at camp, Ronnie is haunted by a gwishin—and a dokkaebi witch hunter who threatens them both. Publication is set for spring 2024 and 2025; Emily Forney at BookEnds Literary did the deal for North American rights.
Whitney Leopard at RH Graphic has bought Reclusivia by Melanie Gillman, a contemporary horror middle-grade graphic novel about a nonbinary kid going to an art residency to focus on photography. The summer program takes a turn for the strange and haunted when it turns out that the community, and the people who run it, have a dark secret. Publication is scheduled for summer 2025; Jen Linnan at Linnan Literary Management sold world rights.
Sophia Jimenez at Atheneum has acquired Grow Up, Luchy Zapata by Alexandra Alessandri (The Enchanted Life of Valentina Mejía). Eleven-year-old Luchy Zapata's middle school dreams go up in a poof of glitter when her BFF returns from a summer in Colombia and ditches her for the cool kids, leaving Luchy to figure out who she is and where she belongs. Publication is planned for summer 2024; Deborah Warren at East/West Literary sold world rights.
Amy Fitzgerald at Lerner/Carolrhoda has bought the middle-grade novel The Rule of Three by Heather Murphy Capps (Indigo and Ida). Biracial seventh grader Wyatt just wants to fit in, play baseball… and hide the fact that he somehow conjures smoke in stressful moments. But when tensions at tryouts and at school make the smoke incidents more frequent, he discovers its roots in his family's history. Publication is slated for fall 2024; Shannon Hassan at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency brokered the deal for world rights.
Andrea Hall at Beaming Books has acquired, in a three-book deal, world rights to Starlin by Anitra Rowe Schulte (l.), illustrated by Katie Crumpton, a chapter book series about an imaginative, theatrical, disabled girl, and her family and school-day adventures. Publication of the first two books is scheduled for fall 2024; Stephanie Hansen at Metamorphosis Literary represented the author, and Christina Doffing at Astound US represented the illustrator.
Connie Hsu at Roaring Brook has bought rights, with Nicolás Ore-Giron editing, to author-illustrator Jennifer Gray Olson's (Ninja Bunny; A Little Space for Me) next picture book, Party Pooper. Paul the panda and his human friends discover that even the most enthusiastic partiers and sullen party poopers can learn to compromise and respect each other's boundaries... but not before someone sticks their booger-covered finger into the birthday cake. Publication is set for fall 2023; Kerry Sparks at Levine Greenberg Rostan negotiated the deal for world rights.
Ann Kelley at RH Studio has acquired Together We Are Sunshine by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow (l.), illustrated by Raissa Figueroa, a celebration of sisterhood in which three girls navigate the natural world and their own relationships. Publication is slated for summer 2025; Paige Terlip at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Natascha Morris at Tobias Literary Agency represented the illustrator.
Catherine Laudone at S&S/Paula Wiseman Books has bought, in an exclusive submission, world rights to Mabel Wants a Friend by Ariel Bernstein (l.), illustrated by Marc Rosenthal, the newest picture book from the team behind We Love Fishing and You Go First. Mabel always gets what she wants, when she wants it. But after driving away Rox, her classmate, Mabel realizes that what she really wants is a friend. Publication is planned for fall 2024; Sean McCarthy at Sean McCarthy Literary Agency represented the author, and Holly McGhee at Pippin Properties represented the illustrator.
Dana Chidiac at Henry Holt has acquired world rights to Grapes of All Shapes by Alastair Heim (l.), illustrated by Michelle Tran, about a character who thinks that everything they see is a grape (including a box, a banana, and even a giraffe), much to their friend's consternation. Publication is scheduled for fall 2024; Kelly Sonnack at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author and illustrator.
Brittany Rubiano at Disney Hyperion has bought The Sugar Plum Bakers: And the 12 Holiday Treats by Patricia Tanumihardja (l.), illustrated by Bonnie Lui, a holiday picture book for the Melissa de la Cruz Studio about Sugar Plum's team of bakerinas (aka baking fairies) who make treats for kids all over the world. Publication is set for fall 2023; Thao Le at Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency represented the author, and Nicole Tugeau at Tugeau 2 represented the illustrator.
Karen Lotz and Hilary Van Dusen at Candlewick/MIT Kids Press have acquired world rights to MIT alumna Jenny Lacika's (l.) Measuring Up: How Oliver Smoot Became a Standard Unit of Measurement, a nonfiction picture book chronicling a student prank that still encourages creativity in science and engineering students today. Anna Bron will illustrate; publication is slated for fall 2024. Miranda Paul at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author, and the artist represented herself.
Joni Sussman at Kar-Ben has bought world rights to Perfect Match by Lori Dubbin (l.), illustrated by Amanda Quartey, a nonfiction picture book about how two champion tennis players—Black American Althea Gibson and Jewish Brit Angela Buxton—teamed up in the 1950s and defied the sport's color barriers and prejudices. Publication is planned for fall 2024; Joyce Sweeney at the Seymour Agency represented the author, and Robbin Brosterman at the Bright Agency represented the illustrator.
Sarah Grill at Wednesday Books has acquired, in an exclusive submission, Dashed by Amanda Quain, a contemporary sequel to Sense and Sensibility, in which teen Margaret Dashwood sets sail for the adventure of a lifetime on a summer-long cruise, but when older sister Marianne joins after a devastating breakup and announces that they both need to find new love, she'll have to figure out how to protect her heart from the romance she's always been afraid of. Publication is set for summer 2024; Moe Ferrara at BookEnds Literary brokered the deal for world English rights.
Eileen Rothschild at Wednesday Books has bought Annie LeBlanc Is Not Dead Yet by Molly Morris. This quirky, speculative YA novel follows Wilson 'Wil' Moss who wins a contest in her strange hometown to bring her best friend Annie LeBlanc back from the dead for a single summer, and has 30 days to right a bunch of wrongs or lose her forever. Publication is slated for spring 2024; Chloe Seager at Madeleine Milburn Agency negotiated the deal for North American rights.
Jessica Smith at Aladdin has acquired debut author Britnee Meiser's All My Bests, an upper middle grade romance told in dual POVs about two childhood best friends turned maybe-something-more who just can't seem to get this thing called romance right, capturing the highs and lows of first love and first heartbreak. Publication is scheduled for fall 2024; Uwe Stender at Triada US handled the deal for world rights.
Kaylan Adair at Candlewick has bought, at auction, world rights to Supriya Kelkar's (l.) semi-autobiographical middle grade graphic novel, Off the Cuff, illustrated by Ani Bushry, about an Indian-American girl in small-town Michigan in the '90s, a time when becoming a part of the melting pot is one of the leading ideals, who learns to stop trying to blend in and to make new friends and find her voice. Publication is planned for spring 2026; Kathleen Rushall at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Christy Ewers at the CAT Agency represented the illustrator.
Lauri Hornik at Penguin/Rocky Pond Books has acquired The Dreamatics by Michelle Cuevas (Confessions of an Imaginary Friend), a middle grade novel about a fantastical theater and its troupe who perform a girl's dreams until nightmares take over. Will one devoted stagehand be able to bring joy back into the spotlight? Publication is set for fall 2023; Emily van Beek at Folio Jr./Folio Literary Management sold world English rights.
Alexa Carter at Little Bee Books has bought world rights to Haleh Massey's (l.) middle-grade graphic novel, Say Something, Poupeh Babaee!, illustrated by Ghazal Qadri, in which an Iranian girl develops selective mutism after a travel ban prevents her parents from joining her in the U.S. Publication is scheduled for fall 2024; Heather Cashman at Storm Literary Agency represented the author, and the illustrator was unagented.
Winsome Bingham at Reycraft Books has acquired English and Spanish rights, in an exclusive submission, for the chapter book series Weekend & Zay, written by RaQia Lowo (l.) and illustrated by Christian Paniagua. In book one, best friends Weekend and Zay's friendship is tested when Zay violates the first rule of friendship: never volunteer your friend for school on the weekend. Publication is slated for fall/winter 2023, with books two and three to follow in fall 2024 and 2025; the author and illustrator represented themselves.
Allyn Johnston at S&S/Beach Lane Books has bought world rights to Where the Deer Slip Through by Katey Howes (l.), illustrated by Caldecott Medalist Beth Krommes, a cumulative picture book about the wide range of wildlife that slips in and out of a quiet, protected meadow near a country house. Publication is planned for summer 2025; Essie White at Storm Literary represented the author, and the illustrator represented herself.
Neal Porter at Holiday House/Neal Porter Books has acquired world rights to Lourdes Heuer's (l.) A Book of Maps, a young cartographer's moving tribute to their hometown; Maxwell Eaton III (Bear Builds a House) will illustrate. Publication is slated for spring 2025; Kelly Sonnack at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the author, and Rosemary Stimola at Stimola Literary Studio represented the illustrator.
Wesley Adams at Farrar, Straus and Giroux has bought world rights to Sweet and Sour by Brian Yanish (l.) (the Shark and Bot series), illustrated by Stacy Ebert (illustrator of Hello, World). The picture book tells the story of two prickly pickles who put aside their differences and find common ground. Publication is set for winter 2024; Jennifer Unter at the Unter Agency represented the author, and Jennifer March Soloway at Andrea Brown Literary Agency represented the illustrator.
Stacey Barney at Penguin/Paulsen has acquired world rights for Beatrice Looks for Home, the picture book by author-illustrator Ron Grady. When Beatrice and her dads move to the city from the country, she's worried she'll never feel at home again. But when Gram sends a special box filled with tools to help her see the city in new ways, Beatrice finds that home is all around her, no matter where she is. Publication is scheduled for spring 2025; Mary Cummings at Great River Literary did the deal.
Holly West at Feiwel and Friends has bought, in an exclusive submission, Ashley Belote's picture book, Don't Wash Winston, about a boy named Liam who does not want his teddy bear Winston to be washed in the big, loud, scary washing machine. Publication is planned for winter 2024; Moe Ferrara at BookEnds Literary Agency negotiated the deal for world rights.
Andrea Hall at Beaming Books has acquired world English rights to I Love You Mucho Mucho, written and illustrated by Rachel Más Davidson. Rosie is excited to tell her Cuban Abuela everything—but quickly realizes they don't speak the same language. Luckily, they find that all stomachs growl in the same language. Publication is slated for fall 2023; Christa Heschke at McIntosh & Otis brokered the deal.
Tara Walker at Tundra Books has bought, at auction, world rights to On a Mushroom Day by debut author and mycophile Chris Baker (l.), illustrated by Alexandra Finkeldey. This nonfiction picture book is structured around a walk through a summertime wood and is meant to inspire curiosity and love of fungi in children. Publication is set for summer 2024; Adriann Ranta Zurhellen at Folio Literary Management represented both author and illustrator.
Kate DePalma and Lisa Rosinsky at Barefoot Books have acquired world rights to My Cousin's Mermaid: A Story from Poland by Anna Staniszewski (l.) (Dogosaurus Rex; Power Down, Little Robot), illustrated by Ewa Poklewska-Koziełło; Rosinsky will edit. On a trip to visit relatives in Poland, Natalia feels out of place until she and her cousin bond over their shared love of fairy tales, magic, and mermaids. Publication is scheduled for fall 2023; Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author, and the illustrator represented herself.
Naomi Krueger at Beaming Books has bought world rights to We Are a Class by Rob Sanders (l.), illustrated by Hannah Abbo, a picture book celebrating how each unique identity and personality are brought together as valued members of a classroom community. Publication is planned for July 2024; Rubin Pfeffer at Rubin Pfeffer Content represented the author, and Erin Tisdel at Advocate Art represented the illustrator.
Marilyn Brigham at Amazon/Two Lions has acquired world rights to Greta Green Builds a Submarine by Sue Fliess (l.), illustrated by David Cooper. This STEM picture book is about an environmentally conscious girl who builds her own submarine and takes it on an underwater adventure. Publication is slated for 2025; Jennifer Unter at the Unter Agency represented the author, and Rubin Pfeffer at Rubin Pfeffer Content represented the illustrator.