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December 2019

A partnership was sprung from a gorgeous PB dummy last year when Chris and Alice Faye began working on this project together. It was true kismet. Chris resonated strongly with Alice Faye’s words and Alice Faye loved the art from Chris. What else are two agents to do but sell this to a wonderful publisher who has published Chris so wonderfully in the past? 

Kathleen Merz at Eerdmans Books for Young Readers has acquired Yellow Dog Blues by Alice Faye Duncan, with art by Chris Raschka, which draws on the poetry of Delta Blues musicians as it traces the passage of this cathartic musical form from the deep south, along the freedom roads north, to the larger world. Publication is slated for Spring 2022; Tricia Lawrence at Erin Murphy Literary represented the author and Brenda Bowen of The Book Group did the deal for the artist (World). 

Alice Faye and I are so excited to show this book to the world and thus, we’re trying to wait patiently for Chris to do his magic and for Spring 2022!

Congratulations, Alice Faye!

- Trish

Animal babies are the best. I can watch animal baby videos online for longer than I care to admit. We get a book of them now, with Jill’s wonderful text. You’ll be addicted to this book, just like I am. 

Marfé Ferguson Delano at National Geographic Children's Books has acquired We Love Babies! by Jill Esbaum, a photo-illustrated picture book that celebrates the many things to love about animal babies, from “paws and claws and little flippers” to “feet that look like fuzzy slippers.” Publication is slated for December 31st; Tricia Lawrence at Erin Murphy Literary sold World rights on behalf of the author. 

Jill and I can’t wait for you all to read along with us.

Congratulations, Jill!

- Trish

A couple of weeks ago, some very exciting news went out in the publishing world: HarperCollins Children’s is starting a Native-focused imprint, Heartdrum, helmed by VP & Editorial Director Rosemary Brosnan in consultation with the inestimable Cynthia Leitich Smith (Muscogee Creek Nation), who is a generous supporter of all things children’s publishing and groundbreaking Native writer herself.

One of the many writers Cyn has mentored is EMLA’s own Dawn Quigley (Turtle Mountain Band Ojibwe Nation). When Cyn suggested that Dawn consider writing a chapter book series about a Native child, the manuscript that resulted completely delighted me with its spot-on kid viewpoint, humor, and loads of heart. We’ve been waiting to tell the world about it, but the world needed to know about Heartdrum first!

Rosemary signed three books about Jo Jo, a first grader living on a fictional Ojibwe reservation, with the first (which Dawn finished drafting at the 2019 EMLA retreat!) to publish in summer 2021. 

I couldn’t be more excited. Congratulations, Dawn!


Well—it’s a post-holiday Monday, and I don’t know about you, but over here at my desk, it is all about catching up on all the things that have been piling up over the last week or so. And what better way to start the catch-up than with this fantastic new deal announcement for nonfiction maven and stellar author Sara Levine? Here’s the scoop:

Carol Hinz at Lerner/Millbrook has bought world rights to Strainers, Pliers, and Jackhammers by Sara Levine. The nonfiction picture book whimsically explores the many shapes of bird beaks—and the reasons for those shapes. Kate Slater will illustrate with mixed media collage artwork. Publication is planned for Spring 2021; Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author, and the illustrator represented herself.

This is going to be a brilliant and informative book, so mark your calendars accordingly. Congratulations, Sara!

- Joan