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September 2019

Susan Vaught has been an Edgar nominee AND an Edgar winner, so news of another middle-grade Vaught mystery is definitely something to be celebrated! 

Again, Susan is working with Sylvie Frank (on their fifth book together!) at Paula Wiseman Books / S&S:

Sylvie Frank at S&S/Wiseman has acquired Edgar winner Susan Vaught's next middle-grade novel, Finding What's Mine, in which a group of kids with developmental disabilities become embroiled in the decades-old mystery of a missing girl when their secret hideout is threatened. Publication is slated for fall 2021; Erin Murphy at Erin Murphy Literary Agency negotiated the deal for North American rights. 

I am SO EXCITED about the group of characters at the center of this story—kids with developmental disabilities, who are in a transitional classroom together in middle school, rarely see representation in children’s books. 

Once again, Susan Vaught’s work will give you characters you want to hug and a mystery to propel you through the pages. Congratulations, Susan!

—Erin

There are some books where you just know, the moment you read them, that they are destined to be an instant classic. That was never more the case than with Amy Cherrix’s phenomenal text, GOODNIGHT, LITTLE BOOKSTORE. This soothing bedtime story involves a jaunt around a beloved bookshop, visiting each of the dear friends and tucking them into their shelves for the night.—And this is something that Amy herself has much experience with, as a bookseller in the Asheville, NC, Malaprop’s Bookstore. 

Luckily, I was not the only reader to feel the love, as GOODNIGHT, LITTLE BOOKSTORE was swept up in a speedy and enthusiastic preempt, selling to Mary Lee Donovan at Candlewick.

But, wait! It gets even better. Every great picture book needs an illustrator . . . and who better to complete the bookselling triangle than the incredible E. B. Goodale, who—you guessed it!—used to be a bookseller herself at the Curious George Bookstore in Cambridge, MA.

 So there you have it—a dream team to be sure! Look out for this gem on shelves everywhere in spring 2022.

--Joan

There are few things that make an agent’s day more special than being able to celebrate an author’s debut deal—and the more so when it turns out to be a slam-dunk, insta-editor-love type of sale. In case it’s not entirely clear, my friends, THAT is exactly the kind of news we are celebrating today. Here are the details, as listed in Publishers Weekly:

 Liza Kaplan at Philomel has acquired World rights to Nadia Salomon’s debut picture book text, GOODNIGHT GANESHA, a lush and warm bedtime story featuring two young children sleeping over at their grandparents’ home in India, and the various ways their culture plays a role in their nighttime routine. Kate Greenaway Medal finalist Poonam Mistry has signed on to illustrate. The author was represented by Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency, and the illustrator by Alice Sutherland-Hawes at Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency. The book is scheduled for publication in Fall 2021. 

 This is seriously a dream team situation, and I for one can’t wait to celebrate with a steaming hot beverage, a cozy quilt, and this book. Congratulations, Nadia! 

--Joan

Magic Ramen

Magic Ramen
Andrea Wang

Oh, could I gush to you about this latest deal announcement! 

Andrea Wang has authored two published picture books (The Nian Monster and Magic Ramen), and two more under contract, but since I first corresponded with her, I've also known she is a novelist. In particular, she’s been working on a middle-grade contemporary novel for a few years now, and I have been so patient, let me tell you…

This summer, she sent it to me, and it was just incredibly good. SO GOOD.

Along the way, editor Joanna Cárdenas at Kokila had seen a few chapters, and she wanted this book. But Andrea wanted to wait to sell it when it was complete. 

Cut to the happily-ever-after: Joanna reads it on an exclusive submission and makes an offer for this book and one more novel, we accept, and the book is underway at Penguin Random House!

The Many Meanings of Meilan is about a girl named (obviously) Meilan, which means Orchid. When her extended family has a falling out, she and her parents and grandfather relocate from Boston's Chinatown to a small town in rural Ohio, where she taps into her inner strength and sense of justice to make her own new place in the world. 

Along the way, she realizes she is actually many Meilans, each inspired by a different Chinese character with the same pronunciation as her name. Sometimes she is Orchid, as she was in Boston; sometimes she is mist, cool and invisible; sometimes she is basket, carrying her parents’ hopes and dreams; sometimes she is bright blue, the way her new friend Logan sees her when they are alone together.

I can’t wait for this to hit shelves in 2021—and I can’t wait to read the NEXT novel, which I’m already excited about, too. I will be so patient!

Congratulations, Andrea!


—Erin