Disney Publishing Worldwide has signed a deal with the Baby Einstein Company for a series of books based on Baby Einstein's interactive videos for infants. The first seven titles—board books, tabbed board books and a picture-book/CD package—will be released this fall.

This is just the latest recent example of a publisher creating licensed titles tying in with direct-to-video productions. Pleasant Co. is publishing an illustrated storybook based on The Nutcracker, an animated video starring Mattel's Barbie and Ken, produced by Mainframe Entertainment; HIT Entertainment's Lyrick Studios published a tie-in title for the Barney video Let's Go to the Zoo (distributed through new Barney publishing licensee Scholastic); and Scholastic and Modern Publishing created a total of six books for Go Exercise with the Teletubbies, from PBS Video and itsy bitsy Entertainment.

In Brief

Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers selected The Beanstalk Group as its licensing agency for Mad Libs .... In October, Scholastic will publish seven titles under license from Home Depot : The Home Depot Big Book of Tools for ages 3-6; two titles in the Home Depot Build Your Own series for ages 4-10; and four board books (My Drill, My Saw, My Hammer, My Screwdriver) for ages 0-6.... Twentieth Century Fox licensed HarperCollins for nine story and novelty books based on its 2002 animated film Ice Age, produced by Blue Sky Studios. Abrams will publish a "Making Of" book.... Holly Hobbie's Toot & Puddle has inspired a line of ornaments, water globes, nightlights, tin boxes, bookends and other giftware from collectibles manufacturer Department 56. Silver Lining Entertainment represents the property for licensing.... McGraw-Hill Children's Publishing is introducing Mercer Mayer First Readers Skills and Practice, a series based on the Open Court reading curriculum from McGraw-Hill's educational division SRA, at retail. The company also publishes Little Critter workbooks.... Universal Studios Consumer Products signed a new licensee, Birthday Express, for paper partyware featuring Curious George. Birthday Express also markets Madeline, Raggedy Ann, Rainbow Fish and Pat the Bunny party supplies.... Bikini.com has authorized Universe Publishing to release Bikini.com Boys: A Guide to the Cutest Boys on the Beach (July). The beach-culture Web site receives 20 million weekly hits..... Wildkin is introducing two lines of sleeping bags featuring Curious George and Madeline (the latter licensed by DIC Entertainment).... DreamWorks has acquired film and TV rights to Terry Pratchett's Bromeliad trilogy, consisting of the fantasy novels Truckers, Diggers and Wings. Truckers is being developed as a computer-animated feature film.... Golden Books is expanding its story and activity book line based on the PBS series Between the Lions this fall with the introduction of five titles..... Tommy Nelson will sell Jay Jay the Jet Plane children's books in the Christian market. Porchlight Entertainment licenses the PBS series.... Random House and Hormel are teaming with Sesame Workshop for an on-pack DragonTales promotion in August and September.