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January 2021

There’s something thrilling about anticipating the arrival of a debut picture book from a brand new author. And what’s why June 22, 2021—YES, that is THIS YEAR, people!!—is so very exciting: Darshana Khiani’s inaugural picture book, HOW TO WEAR A SARI, will be coming to all the bookshelves near you. (May we suggest you preorder here or here?)

Good! Now that’s done, let’s turn our attention to the future. Because possibly the only thing more exciting than an author’s first picture book is . . . their second one! And that’s exactly the sort of good news we are celebrating today.

Here is the deal announcement that went live this week:

Liza Kaplan at Philomel has acquired World rights to HOW TO BE A SARI author Darshana Khiani’s I AM AN AMERICAN, with illustrations by Laura Freeman. The picture book is a celebration of our gloriously diverse country, starting with a classroom of students from many races, cultures, and identities, and showing how each student’s past has shaped their own personal American experience. Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author, and Janet DeCarlo at Storybook Arts, Inc. represented the illustrator. Publication is set for summer 2023.

This one’s got a longer lead time, but in the meanwhile, we can all take comfort in practicing our sari-wearing skills  Huge congratulations, Darshana!

- Joan

It’s celebration day over here at EMLA, because it’s time to announce a new book on its way from the brilliant pen of Dan Richards. In case you need a refresher, I recommend taking a few side-splitting, heart-warming moments with such classic titles as ONCE UPON A GOAT, PENNY & PENELOPE, and CAN ONE BALLOON MAKE AN ELEPHANT FLY.

I know, right?? 

But I digress. Today we are here to trumpet some good news, and trumpet we shall! Here is the exciting deal announcement for a new PB on the near(ish) horizon: 

Kelly Delaney at Knopf has acquired Once Upon a Goat author Dan Richards’ Nubby, about an overworked stuffed bunny who strikes out on a quest for glory, to be illustrated by Shanda McCloskey. Publication is set for Spring 2023; Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency represented the author and Erica Rand Silverman at Stimola Literary Studio represented the illustrator.

Congratulations, Dan!!

- Joan

If you are a K.A. Holt fan—and let’s be honest, aren’t we all?—then you know that she’s got a whole lot of good things coming up: BENBEE AND THE TEACHER GRIEFER launched the “Kids Under the Stairs” series, which is continuing this fall with BEN Y AND THE GHOST IN THE MACHINE, *plus* two more additional titles to round out the friend group (and the series).

But that’s not all! Were you, perhaps, hungry for some stand-alone story action from K. A.? Did you feel, perhaps, that she needed take on a new professional writing challenge? For instance, how about this: What about a novel told *entirely* through text messages and notice board announcements? HOW FUN WOULD THAT BE TO WRITE?

Well. I cannot speak to how much fun was had writing it (though I suspect: a fair amount!), but I can speak to the fact that this is a brilliant book and you don’t want to miss it! Here are the story and pub specifics:

Tiffany Colón at Scholastic Press has acquired World rights to HOUSE ARREST author K. A. Holt’s YOU KNOW THE DRILL, a middle-grade novel told entirely in texts and message board postings. The story follows three best friends across one entire school day as they realize an unplanned lockdown is not a drill, and find themselves using the much maligned school app to join forces with other students, discovering the true meaning of teamwork and bravery. Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency managed the deal, for publication in January 2022.

Hooray Kari, and hooray for us happy future readers!

--Joan