Boxer Books

The book I’m most excited about publishing next year is The Magic Hug by Fifi Kuo. This is an outstanding story about the emotion of anger. When the little dragon gets angry and sees red, he doesn’t always know why. He ends up hurting the people he loves and sometimes he even hurts himself. Luckily his mother knows just what to do about it – something special and something magic – a big hug. Fifi Kuo is a master at emotional storytelling and creating empathy. This is a truly special book where the illustrations work perfectly with the text. Leilani Sparrow Managing Editor


This year we published to great acclaim a critical literacy skills book called Question Everything! In 2021, we’ll publish the second title in this

series, How to Question Everything in Science.

Written and illustrated by Blue Peter Award-winning team, Susan Martineau and Vicky Barker (for Real-life Mysteries) this book will be essential for kids (and adults!) to understand the science that is communicated to us in everyday life. What does that graph mean? Why have they done the study in that way? Scientific literacy is a crucial skill and we can’t wait to share this one with you! Sam Hutchinson BSmall

Cameron Kids Books

I found and fell in love with Shirin Bridge’s first manuscript, the award- winning Ruby’s Wish, illustrated by Sophie Blackall, when I was an editor for Chronicle Books. I wanted to publish her on our list at Cameron, too. Shirin comes from a really interesting family and has a beautiful way of writing about history – especially stories of powerful women – that brings it to life. In addition to being an author, Shirin is something of a history buff, and she’s wickedly funny. And that’s what we love about Get Up, Elizabeth! (February): it combines history and humour in a beautifully simple way. Amy Novesky, Children’s Book Editorial Director at Cameron Kids

Chicken House If I can cheekily add two books rather than one… I am very excited about acclaimed novelist and nature-writer Melissa Harrison’s first book for children, By Ash, Oak and Thorn (May). A story of tiny hidden folk, guardians of nature, it is both magical and inspiring. And also publishing in May, is Efua Traoré’s Children of The Quicksands, winner of our Times/Chicken House Fiction Competition. Set in rural and urban Nigeria, this is a stunning debut of family and myth, and for Efua the beginning of a brilliant career. Rachel Leyshon, Editorial Director

Child’s Play This year we are delighted to publish I See the Sea, a new book by Julia Groves. With beautiful illustrations and simple, thought- provoking text, I See the Sea offers the reader a chance to consider the life of creatures that are rarely seen, yet are an intrinsic part of the ecological balance of our planet. Non-fiction information about each creature complements the mindful text, and discussion about the impact of humans on our oceans will help each of us to think about how we can change our behaviour and help preserve this unique environment. Sue Baker, Editor, Child’s Play

Chronicle Books It’s So Quiet (March) by Sherri Duskey Rinker, illustrated by Tony Fucile is a rollicking bedtime book from the bestselling author of

Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site that will engage even the most rambunctious readers. Sherri Duskey Rinker’s rhymes are as delightful and silly as ever and will have parents and children squealing, croaking and laughing along – before settling themselves down for a quiet night’s sleep. This book reminds me of Sesame Street and the Muppets—the musicality and momentum of those skits, as well as their wonderful, innocent hilarity. I was sure that it would be tremendous fun for families to read aloud – full of humour and warmth. Melissa Manlove, Senior Editor at Chronicle Books

Egmont Fiction It’s an incredibly exciting year of blockbuster titles and it’s impossible to choose between them! Focusing on debuts and new series’, I must start with Amari and the Night Brothers by B.B. Alston. Publishing this month, it’s a thrilling MG fantasy adventure that fans of Nevermoor will adore. Monster for Hunting for Beginners by Ian Marks is a joyous spin on traditional fairy tales and will have readers in stitches. And Rainbow Grey by Laura Ellen Anderson, for slightly younger readers, introduces a fantastical world of weather magic that will enchant fans of Amelia Fang and new readers alike! Lindsey Heaven, Fiction Publishing Director

Egmont Picture Books Favourite fairy tales get a uniquely silly and rebellious twist in a brand-new series for fearless little readers! First to demonstrate her derring-do is Rabunzel the Rabbit, whose exceedingly long ears cause her worried mother to lock her in a high tower, safe from hungry predators. But when Flash Harry the Hare rushes to the rescue, calling ‘Rabunzel, Rabunzel, let down your ears!’, he is surprised to discover that Rabunzel does NOT need rescuing. Laugh- out-loud storytelling, and strong messages of resilience, courage and being true to yourself – along with fabulously foiled covers – will delight readers of all ages! Melissa Fairley, Picture Books Publishing Director

Electric Monkey (Egmont) We have some devastatingly brilliant titles launching on our YA imprint, Electric Monkey. But for the sheer fact it showcases not one, not two, but SIX incredible talents, I have to highlight Blackout which is set to be the YA blockbuster of summer 2021. Celebrating Black teen love stories, this incredible collection of interlinked stories – set during a blackout in New York city enduring an intense heatwave – is written by six of the biggest, award-winning voices on the YA scene: Dhonielle Clayton, Tiffany D Jackson, Nic Stone, Angie Thomas, Ashley Woodfolk and Nicola Yoon. We’re so excited about this launch. Liz Bankes, Fiction Editorial Director

Faber Children’s Books

2021 is set to be a huge year for Faber Children’s with incredible new books from Emma Carroll, Kieran Larwood, Jason Reynolds and Francesca Simon, to name just a few. I feel particularly privileged and excited to be publishing Jeffrey Boakye’s Musical Truth: A Musical History of Modern Black Britain in 27 songs. Black British history is woefully under-represented in the mainstream curriculum and Musical Truth has the intelligence and power to change this. Jeffrey Boakye is a phenomenal talent we feel very lucky to publish. We’ve paired him with illustrator Ngadi Smart – her electric colour palette and dynamic line work is a brilliant match for this extraordinary retelling of Black British history that will dazzle readers of all ages. Leah Thaxton, Faber Children’s Publisher

Books for Keeps No.246 January 2021 5

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