Top Fives from HarperChildrens’ Spring 2017 Preview #harperpreview

On October 14 I was able to attend my first publisher’s preview for HarperCollins. This felt a bit like arriving and it was fascinating to see their new downtown offices. With new titles from Megan Whalen Turner and Gail Carson Levine (not to mention Goldenhand by Garth Nix which came out this season), it felt a bit like my childhood was coming back in full force. Some micro-trends I spotted: duologies and alternating POV.

missprinttopfivesHere are my Top Fives presented at the preview across all of Harper’s imprints:

Picture Books:

  1. Egg by Kevin Henkes: Described as a graphic novel for preschoolers, this book will be Henkes’ fiftieth. Coming January 2017.
  2. Good Night! Good Night! by Carin Berger: Berger’s signature collage-style illustrations tell the story of rabbits who don’t want to go to sleep. Watch for it in January 2017.
  3. I Do Not Like Al’s Hat by Erin McGill: Herb loves everything about being a magician’s rabbit. Except Al’s hat. Which he hates. So Herb quits and answers an ad to become Sophie’s pet rabbit. Out January 2017.
  4. The Legend of Rock, Paper, Scissors by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Adam Rex: Rock, Paper, and Scissors travel through the venerable kingdom known as Backyard trying to find worthy opponents. April 2017.
  5. Rulers of the Playground by Joseph Kuefler: Compared to books by Peter Brown and Jon Klassen this is a picture book about learning how to share–and what happens when everyone wants to be king or queen of the playground. Coming April 2017.

Middle Grade:

  1. Joplin, Wishing by Diane Stanley: A New York City girl receives a Delft platter and the girl painted on the platter comes to life (kind of like a genie). Adventure! Magic! Heart! Watch for it in June 2017
  2. Girl Code: Gaming, Going Viral, and Getting It Done: by Andrea Gonzalez and Sophie Hauser: Non-fiction title about girls who code and more.
  3. York: The Shadow Cipher by Laura Ruby: First in an epic series pitched as National Treasure meets The Westing Game. The scale of the cipher and a hunt across the city also brings Ready Player One to mind. May 2017.
  4. Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive by Ammi-Joan Paquette: A collection of non-fiction stories. Full color photos and illustrations. The catch? For every two stories that are true, one is a lie. An answer key in the back gives a rundown of what’s true and what isn’t. Described as National Geographic in book form.
  5. Orphan Island by Laurel Snyder: Every year a new child is brought to the island and the eldest is taken away in this story about growing up. Compared to Anne Ursu and Kelly Barnhill. May 2017.
  6. Miss Ellicott’s School for the Magically Minded by Sage Blackwood: Story about a girl trying to become a sorceress. A diverse cast and dragon magic! March 2017.

Young Adult:

  1. Spindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer: Sleeping Beauty style story where a girl goes on a quest to rescue her half-sister. Watch for it in April 2017
  2. Literally by Lucy Keating: A book about a book about falling in love. Anabel is the MC in the new hit YA novel being written by the hot YA author of the moment. She she finds herself falling for an unexpected boy, she goes off script. Stranger Than Fiction meets books by Jenny Han or Stephanie Perkins. Watch for it in April 2017.
  3. Midnight at the Electric by Jodi Lynn Anderson: Three teen girls in three different eras (Oklahoma 2065, Oklahoma 1934, England 1919) all connected in this novel that is all about connection. Coming April 2017.
  4. By Your Side by Kasie West: What happens when the Good Girl gets locked in the school library for the long weekend with the Bad Boy? Coming January 2017.
  5. A Season of Daring Greatly by Ellen Emerson White: YA novel about the first woman drafted to MLB as a pitcher. If it sounds like Pitch, that’s because it’s really similar! “Gets you in the feminist feels.” From the author of the president’s daughter series. Out February 2017.
  6. American Street by Ibi Zoboi: Zoboi was the keynote speaker for this preview and talked about her inspiration for this novel which follows Fabiola, a teen girl who has emigrated from Haiti only to find her new life in Detroit isn’t everything promised by the American Dream. February 2017.