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One of the wonderful things about bookmaking is that it transcends time and season—for instance: here we are, poised on the verge of summer, the days heating up and the sun chasing away the clouds (here in the northeast, anyway!). But in book-land, big fat flakes of snow might be falling on a tiny confectioner’s store, where in the window, a small spun-sugar dancing girl awaits her moment to shine. 

Does this sound a book you’d like to read? Here’s the official deal announcement:

Katherine Harrison at Knopf Children’s has acquired at auction ESPERANZA CARAMELO by Lotería author Karla Arenas Valenti with illustrations by Pura Belpré honoree Elisa Chavarri. In the vein of the Nutcracker or Doña Flor, this is a tale of spun-sugar ornaments come to life and cake catastrophe averted on the eve of Nochebuena. Publication is slated for Fall 2023. Ammi-Joan Paquette of Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author and Claire Easton of Painted Words represented the illustrator in the deal for World rights.

For yet another dose of wonder, this picture book text was inspired by Karla’s own grandmother, a baker and creator of extraordinary spun-sugar figurines. It was a special joy to sell this book at auction, and to see it paired with such a perfect illustrator.

Huge congratulations, Karla!

-- Joan

One great thing about being an author is that you never know what path your creativity will take you down next. Case in point? Talented and versatile author Jacob Sager Weinstein was approached by his editor, Justin Krasner at Odd Dot, sharing the publisher’s idea for a series of books, which would include the titles BE SMARTER NOW and BE HAPPIER NOW. Would Jacob be interested in writing these books?

Jacob was, and the project turned out to be a perfect fit. With his trademark combination of creativity, zany voice, and spot-on research, these invaluable books will be a roadmap to countless readers.

You’ll have to wait a little longer to find out for yourself, but I am delighted to say that both titles will be publishing in spring 2023, so mark your calendars and start getting excited today!

Congratulations, Jacob!

- Joan


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