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March 2021
Hot British Boyfriend

Hot British Boyfriend
Kristy Boyce

I have had the worst case of travel FOMO over the last year -- and let's be honest, who hasn't? -- but Kristy Boyce has us covered! We're going to Amsterdam in HOT DUTCH DAYDREAM and I could not be more excited. I've been intrigued by Sage's character since HOT BRITISH BOYFRIEND was still in the initial query stages and I'm so thrilled we're going to see her take off on her own adventure!

Elizabeth Lynch at HarperCollins has acquired Kristy Boyce’s HOT DUTCH DAYDREAM, a standalone companion to Hot British Boyfriend. Sage gets the opportunity of a lifetime to attend a research conference in Berlin, but only if she agrees to spend the summer in Amsterdam as a live-in nanny for her advisor’s toddler. Sage is willing to put up with the germy hands and tantrums, but she isn't prepared for her advisor's totally off-limits teenage son that she can’t get off her mind. Publication is planned for Winter 2023; Tara Gonzalez at Erin Murphy Literary Agency negotiated the deal for World English rights.

Congratulations, Kristy! Fingers crossed for a research trip abroad soon!

-- Tara

After two fantastic middle grade novels A CRACK IN THE SEA and A TEAR IN THE OCEAN (Putnam 2017 and 2019) and a chapter book series, OWEN & ELEANOR (Sparkhouse Family, 2018 and 2019), we’re so excited to announce H.M.’s newest middle grade contemporary (with a magical arc), GOSSAMER SUMMER. Four sisters bored on a summer day when they meet a new friend, and then are interrupted by a very grubby and unfortunately insistent fairy, and then have to deal with a whole lot of very evil birds. All in a summer’s day, right? Well, all in a GOSSAMER SUMMER’s day, that is.

Reka Simonsen at Atheneum has bought Gossamer Summer, a middle grade novel by H.M. Bouwman (A Crack in the Sea; A Tear in the Ocean). Four sisters make a friend, find a grubby fairy, and defend the neighborhood against evil birds in this book about grief, magic, and the power of stories. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023; Tricia Lawrence at Erin Murphy Literary sold North American rights.

Congratulations, H.M.!


The newest Brian Lies book is just on the horizon—LITTLE BAT IN NIGHT SCHOOL releases at the end of June, and I am beyond excited!

While we wait, I am very happy to share some happy news: For several years, Brian Lies has told me how much he’d like to do a book with Carmen Agra Deedy, and recently, Margaret Quinlan of Peachtree reached out with a Carmen Agra Deedy picture book manuscript and a wish that Brian illustrate it! So now we have a brand-new Brian Lies project to celebrate.

Inspired by the 2019 Australian bushfire tragedy as well as Deedy's own experience as a refugee, WOMBAT SAYS COME IN  follows a kindhearted wombat who sacrifices personal space and comfort to shelter a series of animals escaping a wildfire. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022.

I’ve already seen Brian’s sketches, and they will slay you, they’re so wonderful—as is Carmen’s text, of course. This is really a dream team!

Congratulations, Brian!


It’s time to announce a very exciting book deal, from a very exciting author! Scientist and educator Katie Slivensky is known for her action-packed, science-driven middle-grade thrillers (check out THE COUNTDOWN CONSPIRACY and THE SEISMIC SEVEN, if you haven’t already!), but today’s book deal takes the thrills to a whole new level.

While speaking with Algonquin editor Elise Howard many moons ago, she told me that she had always wanted to sign up a non-fiction book for kids about particle physics. (I mean, let’s be honest—who doesn’t have this secret dream?? :D) Well, the more we talked, the more I knew that I had just the right person to take on this task.

And the rest is history! Here is the deal announcement that went live this week:

Elise Howard and Krestyna Lypen at Algonquin have bought World rights to Katie Slivensky’s non-fiction debut, SMALLER: THE SEARCH FOR SUBATOMIC PARTICLES, with Lypen editing. This middle-grade book will take readers on the wild journeys scientists have embarked upon to find evidence of the existence of ever-smaller matter, and show how what they find helps us to understand the universe. Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency managed the deal, for anticipated publication in Spring 2023.

Hooray and huge congrats, Katie!

- Joan

Hooray, it’s debut deal announcement time again! Our favorite!

And another favorite: Tough characters with secret vulnerable hearts. So it is with Breanna, the protagonist of CAMP WHATEVER, Sondra Soderborg’s debut. Breanna hides her unfamiliarity with the nuances of friendship and her fear of heights behind a seemingly unflappable exterior at a middle school team-building camp. I LOVE this character so much—and thankfully, so does Taylor Norman at Chronicle, who will shepherd Breanna and Sondra through to a spring 2023 publication.

It’s such a pleasure to see an author’s first novel find its home, and it’s such a supportive one, too! I feel fortunate to have a front-row seat as it makes its way onto shelves and into readers’ hearts.

Congratulations, Sondra!


The Adventures of a Girl Called Bicycle

The Adventures of a Girl Called Bicycle
Christina Uss

Christina Uss’s debut MG novel, THE ADVENTURES OF A GIRL CALLED BICYCLE, was published in 2018, to quick and broad acclaim. It received 3 starred reviews, is being published in Russian and Chinese, and can be found on a ton of state lists and awards. More importantly, this quirky character quickly worked her way into readers’ hearts, where she has settled in for good. (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I recommend you find a copy of this book, pronto. It’s a charmer in every sense of the word!)

That’s why today’s good news is so very especially good. Why is that, you ask? Well, our girl Bicycle is going to have MORE adventures! There’s gonna be a sequel!!! 

Margaret Ferguson at Margaret Ferguson/Holiday House has signed up A FEW BICYCLES MORE, which will continue the zany adventures of the intrepid Bicycle, whose peaceful life at the Mostly Silent Monastery is interrupted (once again) when she rediscovers her long-lost family--and abruptly finds herself one of quintuplets!

Five times the quirk! Five times the fun! This book is earmarked for Fall 2022, so mark your calendars accordingly.

Congratulations, Christina!

- Joan

You know Jennifer Chambliss Bertman as the New York Times bestselling author of the BOOK SCAVENGER series, which has captivated readers all over the world. But how exciting is it when a beloved author starts feeling the creative pull in an entirely new story direction . . . and brings us all along for the ride?

Oh, friends—this is a ride you DEFINITELY want to go on! Here is the exciting new story pitch for a thrilling new middle-grade book soon to come:

Christy Ottaviano at Christy Ottaviano Books/Little, Brown Books for Young Readers has acquired, in an exclusive submission, World rights to ON THE BRIGHT SIDE by New York Times-bestselling author Jennifer Chambliss Bertman (Book Scavenger). Scheduled for Fall 2023, this 1980s-set middle grade mystery features three young sleuths obsessed with ET and Steven Spielberg, who witness a mysterious flying object in their sleepy California town. Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency negotiated the deal.

Even more exciting, this new book will be part of the new list of Christy Ottaviano—Jennifer’s long-time editor, who has newly resettled her illustrious list at Little Brown HQ. We absolutely could not be more delighted with this continued pairing. This book is going to be one to watch for!

Huge congrats, Jennifer!

- Joan

Do you love young comics? Do you love humor, heart, and fantastic art? Well then, I have news for you: You might know Jarod Roselló as the talented author-illustrator behind RED PANDA AND MOON BEAR, but in recent months he has been very hard at work preparing something entirely new. Today, this new series is officially being announced . . . and here are the details:

Whitney Leopard at Random House Graphic has preempted World rights to RED PANDA AND MOON BEAR creator Jarod Roselló’s HUGO AND DINO. The chapter book graphic novel series follows a boy who can change the world around him just enough to go on all types of magical adventures with his best friend, Dino. The three-book deal was managed by Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency, and the first book will publish in Fall 2023.

That is right, folks—a preempt, as this property was swooped right off the submission-table by an editor who could not resist its pull  The insanely talented Jarod is in finer form than ever in launching this new series, as he introduces us to some unforgettable new characters and prepares to send them on one adventure after another. Won’t you come along for the ride? It’s going to be epic! 

Huge congratulations on the new books, Jarod!!

- Joan