“Home has taken on a whole new meaning for all of us this year,” Nicky Benson, Sourcebooks publishing manager for customized and proprietary products, said in announcing Hometown World, Sourcebooks’ 15th imprint and its ninth for children. “With that in mind, we wanted to create a series of books that could speak directly to the hearts of kids and their parents. Hometown World books will do just that, by incorporating a fun sense of the local alongside bright, happy illustrations. Home really is where the heart is, and this entire program is all about heart and home.”
The origins of Hometown World extend back to 2012 when Sourcebooks launched its first seasonal series of regional books, Santa Claus Is Coming by Steve Smalltown, illustrated by Robert Dunn. Each customized picture book includes information about and illustrations relating to the city, state/province, or landmark that Santa Claus would be visiting on Christmas Eve.
Sourcebooks expanded the line of customized regional picture books with series revolving around Halloween, Easter, and Valentine’s Day in various places in North America, as well as a board book series celebrating bedtime rituals in different cities and states/provinces. These series have sold more than nine million copies total. All of these series will now be published under the Hometown World imprint.
The first new series to be launched under the Hometown World imprint will be My Baby Locale by Rose Rossner, illustrated by Louise Anglicas, “which celebrates all the places where baby lives, learns, loves, and plays.” It will debut in May with eight titles: My City Baby, My Lake Baby, My Beach Baby, My Country Baby, My Burb Baby, My Mountain Baby, My American Baby, and My Bookstore Baby.
There’s more to come this summer. Between June and August, nine titles originally released by Dawn Publications, a nature books publisher that Sourcebooks acquired in 2020, will be reissued under the Hometown World imprint. The nine titles in the counting and rhyming series by Marianne Berkes, illustrated by Jeanette Canyon, Our World, Our Home—Over in the Ocean, Over in a River, Over in the Forest, Over on a Mountain, Over in the Grasslands, Over on a Desert, Over in the Arctic, Over in the Jungle, and Over on the Farm—will be updated with new covers and refreshed pages. And in August, ABCs of Home, a series of 12 illustrated alphabet books by bestselling author-illustrator Sandra Magsamen will be launched under the Hometown World imprint.