There’s no shortage of big-name children’s authors on the floor this year, and plenty of children’s book news. The book with the biggest “wow” factor may be The Chronicles of Harris Burdick (Houghton Mifflin), a collection of short stories based on Chris Van Allburg’s illustrations for his 1984 picture book, The Mysteries of Harris Burdick. It features some of the most luminous names in children’s and adult books, including Stephen King, Lemony Snicket, Sherman Alexie, Kate DiCamillo, Jules Feiffer, and Van Allsburg himself; first printing is 250,000, for an October 25 laydown.
Elsewhere on the fiction front, Random House’s biggest fall title is Christopher Paolini’s Inheritance, which arrives November 8 with a 2.5 million–copy first printing. Other big novels include Tyra Banks’s Modelland (Sept.) and Lauren Kate’s Passion (June); Paolini, Banks, and Kate all joined Random House’s cavalcade of authors at Tuesday night’s party aboard the Intrepid.
Scholastic gave out 2,000 galleys for Brian Selznick’s Wonderstruck, which will have a 500,000-copy first printing and a September 13 laydown date; also highlighted are two by Maggie Stiefvater: The Scorpio Races, a stand-alone (laydown date: October 18), and Forever, the last in the Shiver trilogy, for which she’ll tour this summer (laydown date: July 12).
Attendees also snatched up 1,000 copies of Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone, first in a trilogy for Little, Brown; her editor, Alvina Ling, was on the YA Buzz Panel, and “people really responded to it,” says deputy publisher Andrew Smith. LBYR will print 250,000 copies for a September 27 laydown.
Penguin had an enormous line for Ally Condie, who signed galleys of Crossed (Nov. 1), follow-up to her bestselling Matched. Penguin also gave out galleys for The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler; laydown date is November 21, and film rights have just been optioned to Warner Bros. The big news at Candlewick was the upcoming Judy Moody movie, as well as two novels: The Flint Heart by Katherine and John Paterson, illustrated by John Rocco (Sept.), and A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness (Sept.), which was based on an idea by the late author Siobhan Dowd.
Macmillan had several high-profile novels, including The Fox Inheritance by Mary Pearson (Henry Holt, Aug.), a companion to The Adoration of Jenna Fox, which takes place 260 years after the previous book; Gabrielle Zevin’s All These Things I’ve Done (FSG, Sept.), which launches the author’s Birthright series, set in a future New York City in which coffee and chocolate are illegal; and Newbery Honor author Jack Gantos’s Dead End in Norvelt (FSG, Sept.), a semi-autobiographical story in which some very strange events occur after a boy named Jack Gantos is grounded.
Decemberists frontman Colin Meloy begins a middle-grade fantasy series with HarperCollins: Wildwood, illus. by Carson Ellis, with an August 30 pub date. And debut author Tahereh Mafi got a boost for her dystopian thriller, Shatter Me, by her appearance at Tuesday’s speed-dating event; it pubs on November 15.
A sequel to Tom Angleberger’s The Strange Case of Origami Yoda, called Darth Paper Strikes Back, will have a 300,000-copy first printing for an August 23 laydown. And two big sequels for Disney-Hyperion are The Son of Neptune, book two in the Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan (Oct. 4 laydown), and The Bridge to Never Land by Ridley Pearson and Dave Barry, a companion to Peter and the Starcatchers (Aug. 9 laydown).
Flux ventures into sci-fi for teens with debut author Scott Tracey, whose book Witch Eyes centers on a gay male protagonist with a powerful gift of second sight. Tracey signed books on Tuesday, and according to Steven Pomije at Flux, galleys ran out within 30 minutes. Pomije attributes some of the buzz to the author’s online networking: “He’s been on top of that from day one.”
Another book credited with blog buzz is The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, a first novel by Michelle Hodkin due from Simon & Schuster in August. “Everyone asks about it, more than any other book,” says Paul Crichton, crediting the curiosity to YA blogger coverage. At the show, S&S did a cover reveal for another big title, the second book in Cassandra Clare’s Infernal Devices series, The Clockwork Prince (McElderry, Dec.), though Clare herself wasn’t in attendance—she’s touring in Australia.
Sourcebooks Fire’s biggest fall novel is Darker Still: A Novel of Magic Most Foul by Leanna Renee Hieber, an adult paranormal/fantasy author making her YA debut. Sourcebooks Jabberwocky has Reasons to Be Happy by Katrina Kittle (Oct.) which tackles the topic of eating disorders for tween readers.
Two big titles for Lerner’s Carolrhoda Lab YA imprint are Brooklyn Burning (Sept.) by Steve Brezenoff, author of The Absolute Value of -1, and In Trouble by Ellen Levine, about pregnancy in the 1950s (Sept). Egmont also had two highlights: Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick, a YA dystopian novel due out in September; and Vordak the Incomprehensible: Rule the School, the second in the Vordak series, due in August.
Harlequin Teen was promoting three of its authors at the show, all of whom have series that the company are building: Rachel Vincent (Soul Stealers), Julie Kagawa (The Iron Fey), and Gena Showalter (Intertwined). Harlequin’s Kimani Tru imprint continues to support author Earl Sewell, whose sixth book with the imprint, Maya’s Choice, arrives in November.
Peachtree anticipates the release of The Cheshire Cheese Cat: A Dickens of a Tale (Oct.), a novel by Carmen Agra Deedy and Randall Wright, with illustrations by Barry Moser. The book stars an alley cat that forms an alliance with the mice at the Cheshire Cheese Inn.
Justin Heimberg, author and chief creative officer for Seven Footer Press, will be launching a new series, Ghosts of Rockville, that he describes as a mix of “Harry Potter with ghost hunters and some 39 Clues thrown in.” The series uses the patented MagicView technology, which enables readers to use a viewer to reveal clues throughout the story; the first title, Search for the Dominion Glass, pubs in September.
Blue Apple is geared to release three books that include interactive write-in journals: The Book That Zack Wrote by Ethan Long (July); Grandma Is an Author (Oct.) by Melissa Conroy, illustrated by Elliot Kreloff; and Diary of a Pet Turkey (Oct.) by Joanne Ingis and illustrated by Binny.
On the Picture Book Front
William Joyce’s Guardians of Childhood series for Simon & Schuster's Atheneum imprint kicks off this fall with the picture book The Man in the Moon (Sept., 350,000 copies), and a middle-grade novel, Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King (Oct., 150,000 copies). Subsequent books, and a movie, will follow in 2012; S&S threw a party to launch Joyce's series at BEA.
HarperCollins has three high-profile, high print-run picture books for fall. Every Thing On It, a new collection of poetry and drawings by Shel Silverstein, pubs on September 20 with a million-copy first printing. Bumble-Ardy, the first book Maurice Sendak has both written and illustrated in nearly 30 years, comes out on September 6 from Michael di Capua Books, with a first printing of 500,000. And If You Give a Dog a Donut, the latest in the hugely successful If You Give... series from Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond, has a million-copy first printing for an October 4 pub date.
For Chronicle, Cedella Marley has adapted One Love, a song by her father, reggae musician Bob Marley, into a picture book, illustrated by Vanessa Brantley-Newton and due in September. Songstress Lisa Loeb will make her picture book debut with Lisa Loeb’s Silly Sing-Along: The Disappointing Pancake and Other Zany Songs (Sterling, Oct.), illustrated by Ryan O’Rourke; it comes with a recording of Loeb singing the songs.
The biggest fall book for Charlesbridge is from its Imagine! imprint: a new Peter Yarrow Books title, When You Wish Upon a Star, performed on an accompanying CD by Judy Collins and illustrated by Eric Puybaret. Imagine’s founder, Charles Nurnberg, says the first printing will exceed 100,000 copies.
It’s the 80th anniversary of Babar, and Abrams has Babar’s Celesteville Games by Laurent de Brunhoff (100,000 first printing; Aug.). Lemniscaat USA’s biggest book for fall is a picture book, Tom the Tamer by Tjibbe Veldkamp, illustrated by Philip Hopman (Oct.); Judy Schachner will be blurbing the book.
Newly minted Children’s Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis has teamed with illustrator Gary Kelley for And the Soldiers Sang (Creative Company, Sept.) a picture book about the Christmas Day truce that took place during World War I. Andrews McMeel/Accord will release an interpretation of The Twelve Days of Christmas (Oct.), illustrated by Jade Fang, which incorporates Accord’s AniMotion Technology.
Enchanted Lion sees the release of People, which follows Seasons, a 2010 New York Times Best Illustrated Book, though it was published in BlexBolex’s native France prior to Seasons. BlexBolex is currently working on a third book, which will be published simultaneously in Europe and the U.S. in fall 2012. Also coming from Enchanted Lion this Sept. is Rooster’s Revenge, the third and final title in the Fox and Hen trilogy by Béatrice Rodriguez. A Web site for the trilogy is also scheduled to launch.
News from the Floor
Albert Whitman is starting a YA imprint this fall, Albert Whitman Teen, which kickis off with two debut novels—Guantánamo Boy by Anna Perera and The Poisoned House by Michael Ford, both of which arrive in August. Boyds Mills, celebrating its 20th anniversary, will officially launch its Highlights Press imprint in spring 2012, though books will begin arriving in the fall. Holiday House has announced a new line of readers, called I Like To Read Books — paper-over-board picture books for ages 4-8, launching in September with four titles.
Kingfisher announced a partnership with Animal Planet for a line of books, starting with five titles in September: a standalone title, Incredible Journeys, will be joined by two books each in the new My Life in the Wild series and Weird and Wonderful. Kingfisher is also launching a historical series, All About America, which began in June.
Marshall Cavendish announced its new Shofar Books imprint, a line of Jewish children’s books being done in partnership with the PJ Library. The imprint, edited by editor-at-large Melanie Kroupa, will launch in October with three books.
Capstone’s relaunch of Kate McMullan’s Myth-o-Mania series marks the first time the company has brought back an out-of-print series. The main reason they did so: demand. “Lots of people were asking Kate where they could find the books,” said fiction editorial director Andrew Dahl, noting that some copies were being sold online for $400. Capstone is releasing all eight books in the series in August, with new packaging and epilogues.
Beach Ball Books, a publisher specializing in sports-related illustrated books for readers ages 7-12, debuted this spring with seven titles, including First Pitch: How Baseball Began, written by baseball historian John Thorn. The book takes readers on a tour of the American pastime’s origins with historic illustrations and memorabilia. Other titles to follow this Sept. include Kickoff! How Football Began by Jim Gigliotti and Surferella, a picture book by Marni McGee and illustrated by Charlie Alder, about a surfing Cinderella.
American Girl is introducing two historical characters whose lives are woven together in one six-book series set in 1853 New Orleans. The two girls come from different class and racial backgrounds: Cécile Rey is a girl from a well-to-do family of color, and Marie-Grace Gardner is from a white family that has recently moved to the city. The books and companion dolls go on sale in September. — With reporting by John Sellers, Matia Burnett, Joy Bean, and Claire Kirch