Sendak crosses half-century mark
Kidlit heavyweight Maurice Sendak, who penned Where the Wild Things Are, is celebrating his 50th year in publishing, and to commemorate the milestone, pubco HarperCollins Children’s Books will be re-releasing a series of his best-loved titles. Starting in June, HC will put out new hardback versions of Sendak-illustrated books Zlateh The Goat (US$15.95), How Little Lorrie Visited Times Square (US$14.95) and I’ll Be You and You Be Me (US$14.95). Also hitting shelves in June will be two titles Sendak wrote and illustrated: Higglety Pigglety Pop! (US$14.95) and the author’s first book, the out-of-print The Wonderful Farm (US$14.99). In the spring, HarperCollins will send out celebration kits featuring Sendak posters and displays to retailers. Harper plans to kick off a parented-targeted print campaign promoting Sendak’s titles in the fall.
Anaconda en route
This month, pubco Simon & Schuster will bow with five Angela Anaconda books, based on the same-name hit TV show that follows the travails of an eccentric middle-grader. The titles include two chapter books (Be Nice, Nannette and The Trouble with Teachers), two joke and trivia books (My Book of Stupid Jokes and Dueling Diaries) and a scrapbook (My Scrapbook). As with the show by Decode, which currently airs in the U.S. on Fox Family Channel, the books will feature a 2-D cut-paper animated style. S&S is publishing the titles (US$2.99 to US$5.99) under its Simon Spotlight imprint and will follow up with two additional chapter books-Friends and Foes and the Father’s Day tie-in The Best Dad-in May and June respectively. Simon & Schuster will support the titles with a number of on-line promotions, including a special micro-site (Foxkids.com/angelabooks) featuring book synopses, trivia and downloadable bookmarks, which kids can only access by clicking on select banners on Foxkids.com and Simonsayskids.com. Additionally, S&S will offer retailers Angela Anaconda event kits containing Angela posters, face masks, stickers and Fox Kids Club sign-up sheets.
HarperCollins’ all-American puppies
They’re small, they’re cute and they’re great fodder for children’s authors. Susan Saunders (of Sleepover Friends fame) is the latest writer to take a stab at fictionalizing the dog’s life in her new chapter-book series All-American Puppies. Targeted to readers ages seven to 12, Puppies focuses on the hijinks of five cute newbie pooches. Harper will launch with the first two installments, New Pup on the Block and On the Scent of Trouble (both US$3.99), this month, and will follow up with bimonthly releases thereafter. Starting this month, through its retail accounts, HarperCollins will offer free picture frame fridge magnets shaped like a doghouse to consumers who purchase any of the All-American Puppies titles.