August Latinx Book Releases!

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We are an affiliate with Indiebound and Bookshop. If If you make a purchase through these links, at no additional cost to you, we will earn a small commission.

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In addition to listing 2021 titles by/for/about Latinx on our master list, we will remind readers of what’s releasing each month. CONGRATULATIONS to these Latinx creators. Let’s celebrate these August book babies! Please let us know in the comments if we are missing any.

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DRILL TEAM DETERMINATION: A Jake Maddox JV Girls Story text by Cindy L. Rodriguez (Capstone/Stone Arch Books, August 1, 2021). Middle Grade. Thirteen-year-old Aniyah comes from a long line of drill and step team members. Her mom and aunts all competed, so none of them understand why Aniyah doesn’t want to continue the tradition. But Aniyah doesn’t like attention or performing. Then Aniyah’s friend Stacy convinces her to give the team a try. They dance just for fun and they don’t compete, so there’s no pressure. Aniyah discovers she is right—it is kind of fun! But just when Aniyah is starting to get into the groove, the rules change, and the team decides to enter a competition. Can Aniyah overcome her fears and get on board with competition, or will she have to step away from drill team?

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GYMNASTICS PAYBACK: A Jake Maddox Mysteries Book text by Cindy L. Rodriguez (Capstone/Stone Arch Books, August 1, 2021). Middle Grade. Mia Hernandez’s gymnastics team is nervous about the upcoming season. However, they’re encouraged when their new coach tells them that she was once a gymnast for their longtime rivals. The coach’s knowledge will be a great advantage during the season. But strange things begin to happen at the competitions. The wrong music is played during some girls’ floor exercises. Itching powder ends up in one team’s chalk. At another meet, the parallel bars fall apart while a competitor performs her routine. Someone is taking dangerous risks to cheat at the competitions. But who could it be, and why? Follow along as Mia discovers the shocking truth behind who’s been sabotaging the competition during the gymnastics season in this Jake Maddox JV Mystery.

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A SONG OF FRUTAS/ Un pregón de frutas by Margarita Engle, illustrated by Sara Palacios (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, August 3, 2021). Picture Book. The little girl loves visiting her grandfather in Cuba and singing his special songs to sell all kinds of fruit: mango, limón, naranja, piña, and more! Even when they’re apart, grandfather and granddaughter can share rhymes between their countries like un abrazo—a hug—made of words carried on letters that soar across the distance like songbirds.

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LIKE A LOVE SONG by Gabriela Martins (Underlined, August 3, 2021). Young AdultFake boyfriend. Real heartbreak? Natalie is living her dream: topping the charts and setting records as a Brazilian pop star… until she’s dumped spectacularly on live television. Not only is it humiliating–it could end her career.

Her PR team’s desperate plan? A gorgeous yet oh-so-fake boyfriend. Nati reluctantly agrees, but William is not what she expected. She was hoping for a fierce bad boy–not a soft-hearted British indie film star. While she fights her way back to the top with a sweet and surprisingly swoon-worthy boy on her arm, she starts to fall for William–and realizes that maybe she’s the biggest fake of them all. Can she reclaim her voice and her heart?

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PAOLA SANTIAGO AND THE FOREST OF NIGHTMARES by Tehlor Kay Mejia (Rick Riordan Presents, August 3, 2021). Middle Grade. Six months after Paola Santiago confronted the legendary La Llorona, life is nothing like she’d expected it to be. She is barely speaking to her best friends, Dante and Emma, and what’s worse, her mom has a totally annoying boyfriend. Even with her chupacabra puppy, Bruto, around, Pao can’t escape the feeling that she’s all alone in the world.

Pao has no one to tell that she’s having nightmares again, this time set in a terrifying forest. Even more troubling? At their center is her estranged father, an enigma of a man she barely remembers. And when Dante’s abuela falls mysteriously ill, it seems that the dad Pao never knew just might be the key to healing the eccentric old woman.

Pao’s search for her father will send her far from home, where she will encounter new monsters and ghosts, a devastating betrayal, and finally, the forest of her nightmares. Will the truths her father has been hiding save the people Pao loves, or destroy them?

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WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE GREEN? by Rana DiOrio, illustrated by Addy Rivera Sonda (Little Pickle Press, August 3, 2021). Picture Book. A young boy and girl explore all the different ways they can be green over the course of a day. Drawing on two sides of your paper instead of just one. Walking to the park instead of getting a ride. Turning off the water while you brush your teeth. They discover lots of amazing facts (like how our food travels an average of 1,500 miles to be on our plate ) and realize there’s so much they–and we–can do to help save our world

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WISH UPON A STRAY by Yamile Saied Méndez (Scholastic, August 3, 2021). Middle Grade. María Emilia’s life turns upside-down when she and her family immigrate from Argentina to the US. How can she make new friends when simply speaking English all day is exhausting?

Luckily, she has the company of a stray dog in the neighborhood, who happens to look and act just like her beloved pet cat back home. Eventually, it turns out the pup isn’t a stray after all — she belongs to María Emilia’s new neighbor, Donovan. In order to spend more time with the dog (who totally isn’t her reincarnated cat… right?), she agrees to sing in Donovan’s band. But can Emilia find her new voice without losing herself?

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ALEJANDRIA FIGHTS BACK! / ¡LA LUCHA DE ALEJANDRIA! by Leticia Hernandez-Linares, illustrated by Robert Liu-Trujillo for the Rise-Home Project (Feminist Press, August 10, 2021). Picture Book. For nine-year-old Alejandria, home isn’t just the apartment she shares with Mami and her abuela, Tita, but rather the whole neighborhood. Home is the bakery where Ms. Beatrice makes yummy picos; the sidewalk where Ms. Alicia sells flowers with her little dog, Duende; and the corner store with friendly Mr. Amir.

But lately the city has been changing, and rent prices are going up. Many people in el barrio are leaving because they can no longer afford their homes, and For Sale signs are popping up everywhere. Then the worst thing happens: Mami receives a letter saying they’ll have to move out too.

Alejandria knows it isn’t fair, but she’s not about to give up and leave. Join Alejandria as she brings her community together to fight and save their neighborhood.

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Boogie Boogie, Y'all - Kindle edition by Esperanza, C. G., Esperanza, C.  G.. Children Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.

BOOGIE BOOGIE, Y’ALL written and illustrated by C.G. Esperanza (Katherine Tegan Books, August 10, 2021). Picture Book. A celebratory ode to graffiti and the Boogie Down Bronx. The city is alive with vibrant art in every corner of the parks, the shops, the trains. But most people are too busy to see it—or worse, choose to ignore it! When three children stop to marvel at the art around their community, they realize it’s up to them to show everyone else how truly special it is when art and reality dance together so seamlessly.

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HOW MOON FUENTEZ FELL IN LOVE WITH THE UNIVERSE by Raquel Vasquez Gilliland (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, August 10, 2021). Young Adult. When her twin sister reaches social media stardom, Moon Fuentez accepts her fate as the ugly, unwanted sister hidden in the background, destined to be nothing more than her sister’s camerawoman. But this summer, Moon also takes a job as the “merch girl” on a tour bus full of beautiful influencers and her fate begins to shift in the best way possible.

Most notable is her bunkmate and new nemesis, Santiago Phillips, who is grumpy, combative, and also the hottest guy Moon has ever seen.

Moon is certain she hates Santiago and that he hates her back. But as chance and destiny (and maybe, probably, close proximity) bring the two of them in each other’s perpetual paths, Moon starts to wonder if that’s really true. She even starts to question her destiny as the unnoticed, unloved wallflower she always thought she was.

Could this summer change Moon’s life as she knows it?

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13th STREET #6: Fight with the Freeze-Ray Fowls by David Bowles, illustrated by Shane Clester (HarperChapters, August 17, 2021). Chapter Book. Cousins Malia, Dante, and Ivan must face off against the evil queen of 13th Street. But she has lots of monsters on her side, including birds that can freeze you with a look! Can the cousins defeat her and shut down 13th Street once and for all?

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BIG APPLE DIARIES written and illustrated by Alyssa Bermudez (Roaring Brook Press, August 17, 2021). Middle Grade. It’s the year 2000 in New York City. For 12-year old Alyssa, this means splitting time between her Puerto Rican dad’s apartment in Manhattan and her white mom’s new place in Queens, navigating the trials and tribulations of middle school, and an epic crush on a new classmate. The only way to make sense of it all is to capture the highs and lows in doodles and hilarious comics in a diary.

Then life abruptly changes on September 11, 2001. After the Twin Towers fall and so many lives are lost, worries about gossip and boys feel distant and insignificant. Alyssa must find a new sense of self and purpose amidst all of the chaos, and find the strength to move forward with hope.

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DEFINITELY DOMINGUITA: All for One by Terry Castasús, illustrated by Fatima Anaya (Aladdin, August 17, 2021). Chapter Book. Dom, Pancho, Steph, and their noble steed, Rocco, are ready for their next adventure! When their beloved El Señor Fuentes asks Dom to run a very important errand—to put the order in at the local butcher shop for his daughter, Leni’s, upcoming quinceañera—Dom is happy to help. But when Señor Fuentes discovers the order was never put in—and the food for the party has been sold to someone else—Dom takes a cue from The Three Musketeers to try and figure out what happened.

With the help of Pancho and Steph, Dom discovers the dastardly Bublassi brothers have big plans to sabotage Leni’s party. Keeping in mind the famous motto All for One and One for All, Mundytown’s own Three Musketeers are determined to make sure Leni has a party she’ll remember for all the right reasons!

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LIVING BEYOND BORDERS: Growing up Mexican in America edited by Margarita Longoria (Philomel Books, August 17, 2021). Young Adult Anthology. Twenty stand-alone short stories, essays, poems, and more from celebrated and award-winning authors make up this YA anthology that explores the Mexican American experience. With works by Francisco X. Stork, Guadalupe Garcia McCall, David Bowles, Rubén Degollado, e.E. Charlton-Trujillo, Diana López, Xavier Garza, Trinidad Gonzales, Alex Temblador, Aida Salazar, Lupe Ruiz-Flores, Sylvia Sanchez Garza, Dominic Carrillo, Angela Cervantes, Carolyn Dee Flores, René Saldaña Jr., Justine Narro, Daniel García Ordaz, and Anna Meriano. In this mixed-media collection of short stories, personal essays, poetry, and comics, this celebrated group of authors share the borders they have crossed, the struggles they have pushed through, and the two cultures they continue to navigate as Mexican American.

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MY TWO BORDER TOWNS / MIS DOS PUEBLOS FRONTERIZOS by David Bowles, illustrated by Erika Meza (Kokila, August 24, 2021). Picture Book. Early one Saturday morning, a boy prepares for a trip to the Other Side/el Otro Lado. It’s close—just down the street from his school—and it’s a twin of where he lives. To get there, his father drives their truck along the Rio Grande and over a bridge, where they’re greeted by a giant statue of an eagle. Their outings always include a meal at their favorite restaurant, a visit with Tío Mateo at his jewelry store, a cold treat from the paletero, and a pharmacy pickup. On their final and most important stop, they check in with friends seeking asylum and drop off much-needed supplies.

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BRAINS! NOT JUST A ZOMBIE SNACK by Stacy McAnulty, illustrated by Matthew Rivera (Henry Holt and Co. BYR, August 31, 2021). Picture Book. Brains. 78% water, 100% delicious. A zombie chef who has sworn off eating brains salivates over this super powerful organ in this funny and fact-filled picture book. From learning about how the brain processes messages from our five senses, to learning why wrinkly human brains are so much more powerful than smooth mouse brains, this is a hilarious introduction to the organ that does it all.

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Latinx Book Deals: June 2021

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Compiled by Cecilia Cackley

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This is a monthly series keeping track of the book deals announced by Latinx writers and illustrators. The purpose of this series is to celebrate book deals by authors and illustrators in our community and to advocate for more of them. If you are an agent and you have a Latinx client who just announced a deal, you can let me know on Twitter, @citymousedc. If you are a Latinx author or illustrator writing for children or young adults, and you just got a book deal, send me a message and we will celebrate with you! And if I left anyone out here, please let me know! Here’s to many more wonderful books in the years to come.

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June 1

Kate Fletcher has signed graphic novelist Mel Valentine Vargas to create a graphic novel interpretation of award-winning YA novel Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass by Meg Medina, about a Latina teen who is targeted by a bully at her new school and must discover resources she never knew she had. Publication is planned to coincide with the book’s 10th anniversary in 2024. Illustrator agent: Elizabeth Bennett at Transatlantic Agency. Author agent: Jen Rofé at Andrea Brown Literary.

Neal Porter at Holiday House/Neal Porter Books has bought world rights to A-M-O-R Spells L-O-V-E by Michael Genhart, author of Accordionly: Abuelo and Opa Make Music. The picture book, illustrated by three-time Pura Belpré Honor artist John Parra, is about a boy competing in the National Spanish Spelling Bee who learns of his own abuela’s childhood experience when she was banned from speaking Spanish at school. Publication is slated for summer 2023. Author agent: Nicole Geiger at Full Circle Literary. Illustrator agent: Adriana Dominguez and Stefanie Sanchez Von Borstel at Full Circle Literary.

Katherine Harrison at Knopf has acquired at auction world rights to Esperanza Caramelo by Lotería author Karla Arenas Valenti, illustrated by Pura Belpré Honor artist Elisa Chavarri. In the vein of the Nutcracker or Doña Flor, this is a tale of spun-sugar ornaments come to life and cake catastrophe averted on the eve of Nochebuena. Publication is scheduled for fall 2023. Author agent:  Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary. Illustrator agent: Claire Easton at Painted Words.

June 3

Christy Ottaviano at Little, Brown/Ottaviano has bought, in an exclusive submission, North American rights to No Going Back by Patrick Flores-Scott, the author’s third YA novel. It’s the Friday after being released from a year of juvenile detention, and biracial Antonio Sullivan is heading home for a fresh start. His parole terms state he can’t drink, can’t break the law, can’t see his father, and he must be on time to meet his parole officer on Monday before school, or else he’s headed back to detention. Antonio has one weekend, one crazy friend, one old flame, and a dad who won’t give up. What could go wrong? The book is set for spring 2023. Author agent: Steven Chudney at the Chudney Agency.

June 8

Luana Kay Horry at HarperCollins has acquired, in a preempt, the early reader graphic novel series Super Serious Mysteries by Josh Crute, illustrated by James Rey Sanchez, in a two-book deal. In the first book, The Untimely Passing of Nicholas Fart: A Who-Dealt-It Mystery, detective-in-training Penelope Whiff must catch the culprit of a very mysterious and stinky crime. The first book is set for summer 2023, and the second for summer 2024. Illustrator agent: Alex Gehringer at the Bright Agency.

Sophia Jimenez at Atheneum has acquired world rights to Veo, Veo, I See You, a picture book by Pura Belpré Award Honoree Lulu Delacre. While out running errands with their mami during the Covid-19 pandemic, Marisol and Pepito play a game of Veo, Veo (I Spy) that helps them see how the workers in their neighborhood are, and will always be, essential. Publication is planned for fall 2023.

Jessica Echeverria at Lee & Low Books has bought world rights to Still Dreaming/Seguimos soñando by Claudia Guadalupe Martínez (Not a Bean), illustrated by Magdalena Mora. This bilingual picture book tells the story of a child wishing for a life without borders after he and his parents are forced to leave their home during the Mexican Repatriation. Along their journey they meet others with similar stories. Publications is slated for fall 2022. Author agent: Adriana Dominguez at Full Circle Literary. Illustrator agent: Steven Malk at Writers House.

June 10

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June 15

Stacey Barney at Penguin/Nancy Paulsen Books has bought middle grade debut Rostam and the Red Dwarf by Olivia Abtahi (Pefectly Parvin), a space opera inspired by The Shahnameh: The Persian Book of Kings, in which 12-year-old Rostam accidentally plunges his entire planet into darkness and must now defeat the demon king Zahhak to save their sun. Publication is slated for spring 2023. Author agent: Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich, & Bourret.

Luana Kay Horry at HarperCollins has bought, in an exclusive submission, world rights to Phenomenal AOC: The Roots and Rise of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, written by Pura Belpré Honor author Anika Aldamuy Denise (Planting Stories) and illustrated by Loris Lora (Legendary Leaders Who Shaped the World). From her earliest days in the Bronx, to her electrifying primary win, to the halls of Congress—the phenom known to her family as Sandy and to the world as AOC proves what’s possible when you speak truth to power and aren’t afraid to shake the table. Publication is slated for fall 2022. Author agent: Emily van Beek at Folio Jr./Folio Literary Management. Illustrator agent: Sally Heflin at Heflinreps.

Janine O’Malley at FSG has acquired world rights to On the Fourth of July by Maggie Rudd in a two-book deal, both illustrated by Pura Belpré Honor artist Elisa Chavarri. This picture book celebrates the joy of being an American on the Fourth of July as the daytime fun of picnics and swimming gives way to wonder and delight at a night of fireworks. Publication is scheduled for spring 2023. Illustrator agent:  Claire Easton at Painted Words

June 17

Luana Kay Horry at HarperCollins has bought world rights, at auction, in a two-book deal, to Abuela’s Super Capa by Ana Siqueira, illustrated by Pura Belpré Honor artist Elisa Chavarri. It’s an intergenerational story about love and remembrance in which Luis and Abuela put on their super capas and save the world, until one day when Abuela must hang up her capa. Publication is slated for winter 2023, and simultaneously in Spanish. Author agent: Andrea Walker at Azantian Literary represented the author while at Olswanger Literary. Illustrator agent:  Claire Easton at Painted Words.

June 22

Anne Heltzel at Abrams has bought debut YA novel Lightlark by Alex Aster (Emblem Island), an untitled sequel, and an untitled graphic novel. Lightlark is a twisty fantasy that features six rulers competing in a high-stakes game set on a lush magical island, with 100 days to break the deadly curses that have plagued their realms for centuries. The first book is set for fall 2022. Author agent: Katelyn Detweiler at Jill Grinberg Literary.

Anna Roberto at Feiwel and Friends has acquired world rights to Painting the Sky with Love by Mary Baca Haque, illustrated by Tatiana Gardel. In this picture book, a child “paints” the sky with love; hearts cascade and bounce down, while people looking up open their hearts to love. Publication is planned for fall 2023. Illustrator agent: Jemiscoe Chambers-Black at Andrea Brown Literary.

June 24

Sophia Jimenez at Atheneum has bought Free to Learn: How Alfredo Lopez Fought for the Right to Go to School by Cynthia Levinson (The Youngest Marcher), a picture book based on the true story of a boy whose family was part of Plyler v. Doe, the Supreme Court case that won access to education for undocumented immigrant children in the U.S., illustrated by Mirelle Ortega (Small Rooms, Big Dreams: The Journey of Julian and Joaquin Castro). Publication is planned for spring 2024. Illustrator agent: James Burns at the Bright Agency.

June 29

Kate Jacobs while at Roaring Brook acquired world rights to Lily and the Other Guy by Shelley Tougas, illustrated by Sara Palacios; Emily Feinberg will edit. Lily is not sure about the new guy her Mom is seeing, and she misses Dad, but with a little patience and humor she learns that having fun with a new step-parent doesn’t mean forgetting Mom or Dad, and that letting someone new into your life means more love all around. Publication is set for summer 2022. Illustrator agent: Minju Chang and Kendra Marcus at BookStop Literary Agency.

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Cecilia Cackley is a Mexican-American playwright and puppeteer based in Washington, DC. A longtime bookseller, she is currently the Children’s/YA buyer and event coordinator for East City Bookshop on Capitol Hill. Find out more about her art at www.ceciliacackley.com or follow her on Twitter @citymousedc

July Latinx Book Releases!

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We are an affiliate with Indiebound and Bookshop. If If you make a purchase through these links, at no additional cost to you, we will earn a small commission.

In addition to listing 2021 titles by/for/about Latinx on our master list, we will remind readers of what’s releasing each month. CONGRATULATIONS to these Latinx creators. Let’s celebrate these July book babies! Please let us know in the comments if we are missing any.

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MUSE SQUAD: THE MYSTERY OF THE TENTH by Chantel Acevedo (Balzer + Bray, July 6, 2021). Middle Grade.

Callie Martinez-Silva is finally getting the hang of this whole goddess within thing. Six months after learning she was one of the nine muses of ancient myth, she and the other junior muses are ready for new adventures. Except first Callie has to go to New York City for the summer to visit her dad, stepmom, and new baby brother.

Then the muses get startling news: an unprecedented tenth muse has been awakened somewhere in Queens, putting Callie in the perfect position to help find her. And she’ll have help—thanks to a runaway mold problem in London, Muse Headquarters is moving to the New York Hall of Science.

But balancing missions and family-mandated arts camp proves difficult for Callie, especially once mysterious messages from spiders (yikes!) begin to weave a tale of ancient injustice involving Callie’s campmate Ari.

Now Callie and her friends have to make a choice: follow orders and find the tenth muse or trust that sometimes fate has other plans.

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SING WITH ME: THE STORY OF SELENA QUINTANILLA by Diana Lópezillustrated by Teresa Martinez (Dial Books, July 6, 2021). Picture Book. From a very early age, young Selena knew how to connect with people and bring them together with music. Sing with Me follows Selena’s rise to stardom, from front-lining her family’s band at rodeos and quinceañeras to performing in front of tens of thousands at the Houston Astrodome. Young readers will be empowered by Selena’s dedication–learning Spanish as a teenager, designing her own clothes, and traveling around the country with her family–sharing her pride in her Mexican-American roots and her love of music and fashion with the world. This book is being released simultaneously in Spanish.

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SUMMER IN THE CITY OF ROSES by Michelle Ruiz Keil (Soho Teen, July 6, 2021). Young Adult. All her life, seventeen-year-old Iph has protected her sensitive younger brother, Orr. But this summer, with their mother gone at an artist residency, their father decides it’s time for fifteen-year-old Orr to toughen up at a wilderness boot camp. When he brings Iph to a work gala in downtown Portland and breaks the news, Orr has already been sent away. Furious at his betrayal, Iph storms off and gets lost in the maze of Old Town. Enter George, a queer Robin Hood who swoops in on a bicycle, bow and arrow at the ready, offering Iph a place to hide out while she figures out how to track down Orr.

Orr, in the meantime, has escaped the camp and fallen in with The Furies, an all-girl punk band, and moves into the coat closet of their ramshackle pink house. In their first summer apart, Iph and Orr must learn to navigate their respective new spaces of music, romance, and sex work activism—and find each other to try to stop a transformation that could fracture their family forever.

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SWIMMING WITH SHARKS: Wild Rescue #2 by Melissa Cristina Márquez (Scholastic, July 6, 2021). Middle Grade. Twelve-year-old Adrianna Villalobos and her older brother Feye travel the globe with their parents, the hosts of a suspenseful nature show called “Wild Survival!” The show features daring animal rescues and the work the family does at their animal sanctuary.

Their latest adventure takes them to the coast of Sri Lanka. There they must rescue an injured tiger shark– before it’s too late!

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TIME VILLAINS by Victor Piñeiro (Sourcebooks Young Readers, July 6, 2021). Middle Grade. Javi Santiago is trying his best not to fail sixth grade. So, when the annual “invite any three people to dinner” homework assignment rolls around, Javi enlists his best friend, Wiki, and his sister, Brady, to help him knock it out of the park.

But the dinner party is a lot more than they bargained for. The family’s mysterious antique table actually brings the historical guests to the meal…and Blackbeard the Pirate is turning out to be the worst guest of all time.

Before they can say “avast, ye maties,” Blackbeard escapes, determined to summon his bloodthirsty pirate crew. And as Javi, Wiki, and Brady try to figure out how to get Blackbeard back into his own time, they might have to invite some even zanier figures to set things right again.

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ALL THESE WARRIORS by Amy Tintera (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, July 13, 2021). Young Adult. When the world was crumbling, seventeen-year-old Clara fought back. She escaped her abusive home and joined Team Seven, a monster fighting squad of runaways and misfits formed to combat the scrabs terrorizing the planet. And after nearly dying in Paris, Clara and Team Seven discovered the sinister truth behind the scrab invasion. Scrabs aren’t just mindless monsters set on destruction. They’re being trained and weaponized by MDG, a private security firm hired by the government. 

Now Clara and the rest of Team Seven have made it their mission to expose MDG. But no one said fighting for the truth would be easy. And as Clara and Team Seven find themselves at the center of a global conspiracy, they must face their biggest threat yet: their own demons.

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BELLA’S RECIPE FOR SUCCESS by Ana Siqueira, illustrated by Geraldine Rodriguez (Beaming Books, July 13, 2021). Picture Book. Bella wants to find out what she’s good at. But she quits everything she (barely) tries because she’s a desastre. Her somersaults are like jirafas rolling downhill, her piano playing like elephant feet. When she decides to learn how to bake with her abuela, her first attempt at dulce de leche frosting looks like cocodrilo skin. She must learn it’s okay to try again or she won’t be good at anything.

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EL CUCUY IS SCARED, TOO! by Donna Barba Higueraillustrated by Juliana Perdomo (Abrams Books for Young Readers, July 13, 2021). Picture Book. Ramón is a little boy who can’t sleep. He is nervous for his first day at a new school. And El Cucuy is the monster who lives in Ramón’s cactus pot. He can’t sleep, either. It turns out that El Cucuy is scared, too!

This story explores the worries that can accompany moving to a new place and beginning a new journey—and reveals how comfort, bravery, and strength can be found through even the most unexpected of friendships.

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THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS illustrated by Jeannette Arroyo (Disney Classic & Little Golden Books, July 13, 2021). Picture Book. Tim Burton’s classic film The Nightmare Before Christmas-retold for the first time as a Little Golden Book. Jack Skellington is the King of Halloween Town… but after so many years of the same spooky thing, he’s become bored of scaring. When Jack accidentally discovers Christmas Town, he hatches a crazy scheme to take over a new holiday for the year. But can the master of monstrous scares spread Christmas cheer like jolly old Saint Nick? And what will Halloween Town’s power-hungry Oogie Boogie do when he discovers Jack’s plan?

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PARANORTHERN: And the Chaos Bunny A-hop-calypse by Stephanie Cookeillustrated by Mari Costa (Etch/HMH Books for Young Readers, July 13, 2021). Graphic Novel/Middle Grade. It’s fall break in the supernatural town of North Haven, and young witch Abby’s plans include pitching in at her mom’s magical coffee shop, practicing her potion making, and playing board games with her best friends—a pumpkinhead, a wolf-girl, and a ghost. But when Abby finds her younger sister being picked on by some speed demons, she lets out a burst of magic so strong, it opens a portal to a realm of chaos bunnies. And while these bunnies may look cute, they’re about to bring the a-hop-ocalypse  (and get Abby in a cauldronful of trouble) unless she figures out a way to reverse the powerful magic she unwittingly released. What’s a witch to do?

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ISABEL AND HER COLORES GO TO SCHOOL by Alexandra Alessandri, illustrated by Courtney Dawson (Sleeping Bear Press, July 15, 2021). Picture Book. Isabel doesn’t speak much English, preferring the colors and comfort of Spanish, yet she still finds creative ways to communicate when words won’t work.

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Latinx Book Deals: May 2021

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Compiled by Cecilia Cackley

This is a monthly series keeping track of the book deals announced by Latinx writers and illustrators. The purpose of this series is to celebrate book deals by authors and illustrators in our community and to advocate for more of them. If you are an agent and you have a Latinx client who just announced a deal, you can let me know on Twitter, @citymousedc. If you are a Latinx author or illustrator writing for children or young adults, and you just got a book deal, send me a message and we will celebrate with you! And if I left anyone out here, please let me know! Here’s to many more wonderful books in the years to come.

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May 4

Jenny Bak at Viking has acquired, at auction, Up in Flames, a contemporary retelling of Gone with the Wind by debut author Hailey Alcaraz. Pitched in the vein of diverse retellings like Anna K, the privileged and irrepressible Ruby Ortega vies to win the heart of her best friend while fighting to save her family’s home and the local Latinx community from the California wildfires, all while avoiding the help of a young, annoyingly attractive entrepreneur. Publication is set for spring 2023. Author agent:  Amy Stapp at Wolfson Literary.

Liza Kaplan at Philomel has bought world rights, at auction in a two-book deal, to picture book A Girl Can Build Anything by Pat Zietlow Miller and E. Charlton-Trujillo, illustrated by Keisha Morris, an affirmation of the power of vision and persistence. Publication is set for spring 2023. Author agent: Erin Murphy at Erin Murphy Literary Agency.

May 6

Connie Hsu at Roaring Brook has acquired, at auction, world rights to the picture book Until Someone Listens by 11-year-old Estela Juarez, illustrated by Teresa Martínez, which follows the true story of how Estela’s mother, Alejandra, was deported to Mexico when Estela was eight years old. Focused on getting her mother back, Estela wrote letters to Congress, to the president, and to many others, which culminated in a powerful video shared at the 2020 Democratic National Convention. After three years of separation, last week Alejandra was granted a one-year parole to return to the U.S.; this Mother’s Day Estela will spend it with her mother. Publication is slated for fall 2022. Author agent: Johanna Castillo at Writers House. Illustrator agent: Christine Hong at Astound US.

May 11

Ashley Hearn at Peachtree Teen has acquired The Ghosts of Rose Hill by YA debut author R.M. Romero (The Dollmaker of Kraków). The magical realism verse novel follows Latina violinist, Ilana, whose parents send her to her aunt’s house in Prague to witness the humble life of an artist. There she meets the ghost of a boy in an abandoned Jewish cemetery and, as she restores his grave, is tempted by the dark magic that binds him to the city. Publication is slated for summer 2022. Author agent: Rena Rossner at the Deborah Harris Agency.

Kate Meltzer at Roaring Brook has bought at auction Hedgehogs Don’t Wear Underwear by Marissa Valdez, a debut picture book about a tighty-whitey-wearing hedgehog named Jacques who’s afraid to go public with his secret love of underwear. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022, with a second untitled picture book to follow in fall 2023. Author agent: Kelly Sonnack at Andrea Brown Literary.

May 13

Joanna Cárdenas at Kokila has bought, in an exclusive submission, reprint rights for They Call Me Güero, the award-winning middle grade novel in verse by David Bowles, as well as They Call Her Fregona, a companion novel in verse that follows the budding relationship between narrator Güero and his girlfriend Joanna Padilla. They Call Me Güero is set for August 2021, and They Call Her Fregona is planned for fall 2022. Author agent: Taylor Martindale Kean and Stefanie Sanchez Von Borstel.

Courtney Fahy at Yellow Jacket has bought Pauli Murray: The Life of a Pioneering Feminist and Civil Rights Activist, a middle grade biography in verse about the queer civil rights and women’s rights activist who conceptualized the arguments that would win Brown v. Board of Education and in 1964, the arguments that won women equality in the workplace, written by her niece Rosita Stevens-Holsey and Terry Catasús Jennings. Publication is set for spring 2022. Author agent: Natalie Lakosil at Bradford Literary.

May 18

Erin Siu at Feiwel and Friends has acquired debut picture book The New Favorite Thing by author-illustrator Olga Herrera, about an anxious dog whose daily routine is disrupted when he encounters a monstrous new thing in the living room. Publication is slated for winter 2023. Author agent: Natalie Lakosil at Bradford Literary Agency.

Andrea Hall at Albert Whitman has bought world rights to Santiago’s Dinosaurios by debut author Mariana Ríos Ramírez, illustrated by Udayana Lugo. When Santiago moves from Mexico to the United States, he doesn’t understand English. On his first day in his new school, how will he communicate with his peers? While they all may not speak the same language, they do all speak dinosaur! Publication is slated for fall 2022. Illustrator agent:Christina Doffing at Astound US.

May 20

Simon Boughton at Norton Young Readers has acquired Todo Sobre Mi Abuela, a YA memoir-in-verse by YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction Award Winner Rex Ogle, and a second untitled memoir. The story is centered on the author’s relationship with his grandmother. Publication for the first book is slated for summer 2022, with the second to follow in fall 2023. Author agent: Brent Taylor at Triada US.

May 25

Maria Barbo at HarperCollins has acquired The Keeper by Guadalupe Garcia McCall, a middle grade horror/mystery about a brother and sister who move to a seemingly idyllic neighborhood in the Pacific Northwest only to get threatening letters from a mysterious stranger who calls himself The Keeper. Publication is set for January 2022. Author agent: Andrea Cascardi at Transatlantic Agency.

Neal Porter at Holiday House/Neal Porter Books has acquired world rights to Song for Jimi by Coretta Scott King Award winner Charles R. Smith, Jr., illustrated by Society of Illustrators Gold Medal winner Edel Rodriguez, a meditation on the life of guitar legend Jimi Hendrix. The book is scheduled for fall 2021. Illustrator agent: Holly McGhee at Pippin Properties.

Luisa Beguiristain at Roaring Brook has bought, in a two-book deal, world rights to Monster Baker by Laura Lavoie. This pun-filled picture book follows overeager monster baker Tillie as she tries to make her Grandmonster the best birthday treat, with a little inspiration from her idol, famous baker Pierre du Monstère. Vanessa Morales will illustrate the first book; publication is set for spring 2023. Illustrator agent: Natascha Morris at the Tobias Literary Agency.

May 27

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cecilia-02-original

Cecilia Cackley is a Mexican-American playwright and puppeteer based in Washington, DC. A longtime bookseller, she is currently the Children’s/YA buyer and event coordinator for East City Bookshop on Capitol Hill. Find out more about her art at www.ceciliacackley.com or follow her on Twitter @citymousedc

June Latinx Book Releases!

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We are an affiliate with Indiebound and Bookshop. If If you make a purchase through these links, at no additional cost to you, we will earn a small commission.

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In addition to listing 2021 titles by/for/about Latinx on our master list, we will remind readers of what’s releasing each month. CONGRATULATIONS to these Latinx creators. Let’s celebrate these June book babies! Please let us know in the comments if we are missing any.

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MILES MORALES: Shock Waves, an original Spider-Man graphic novel by Jason Reynolds, illustrated by Pablo Leon (Graphix, June 1, 2021). Middle Grade. Miles Morales is a normal kid who happens to juggle school at Brooklyn Visions Academy while swinging through the streets of Brooklyn as Spider-Man. After a disastrous earthquake strikes his mother’s birthplace of Puerto Rico, Miles springs into action to help set up a fundraiser for the devastated island. But when a new student’s father goes missing, Miles begins to make connections between the disappearance and a giant corporation sponsoring Miles’ fundraiser. Who is behind the disappearance, and how does that relate to Spider-Man?

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STROLLERCOASTER by Matt Ringler, art by Raúl the Third and Elaine Bay (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, June 1, 2021). Picture Book. Buckle up as a toddler’s tantrum is cleverly averted when a loving dad transforms an everyday neighborhood stroll into an extraordinary adventure, reminding us that all you need to chase away a bad mood is love and a little bit of imagination.

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PALETERO MAN by Lucky Diaz, illustrated by Micah Player (HarperCollins, June 1, 2021). Picture Book.

Ring! Ring! Ring! Can you hear his call? Paletas for one! Paletas for all!

What’s the best way to cool off on a hot summer day? Run quick and find Paletero José!

Follow along with our narrator as he passes through his busy neighborhood in search of the Paletero Man. But when he finally catches up with him, our narrator’s pockets are empty. Oh no! What happened to his dinero? It will take the help of the entire community to get the tasty treat now.

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SHE PERSISTED: Sonia Sotomayor by Meg Medina (Philomel Books, June 1, 2021). Chapter Book. Inspired by the #1 New York Times bestseller She Persisted by Chelsea Clinton and Alexandra Boiger comes a chapter book series about women who stood up, spoke up and rose up against the odds! Sonia Sotomayor is the first Latina Supreme Court Justice in the history of the United States, but her road there wasn’t easy. She overcame many challenges along the way, including a diagnosis of diabetes at age seven. But she didn’t let that stop her from achieving her dream and inspiring children all over the world to work hard and believe in themselves.

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SIMONE BREAKS ALL THE RULES by Debbie Rigaud (Scholastic Press, June 1, 2021). Young Adult.

Simone Thibodeaux is about to switch things up.

Check her life: It’s sealed in a boy-proof container. Her Haitian immigrant parents send Simone to an all-girls high school and enforce strict no-dating rules. As for prom? Simone is allowed to go on one condition: Her parents will select her date (a boy from a nice, Haitian immigrant family, obviously).

Simone is desperate to avoid the setup — especially since she has a serious crush on another boy. It’s time to take action. Simone and her fellow late-bloomer friends make a senior year bucket list of all the wild things they haven’t done yet. Like: going out dancing, skipping class (what), and oh yeah — deciding their own prom destinies.

But as the list takes on a life of its own, things get much messier than Simone expected. Can she figure out which rules are worth breaking and which might save her from heartbreak?

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THE COT IN THE LIVING ROOM by Hilda Eunice Burgos, illustrated by Gaby D’Alessandro (Kokila Books, June 1, 2021). Picture Book. Night after night, a young girl watches her mami set up a cot in the living room for guests in their Washington Heights apartment, like Raquel (who’s boring) and Edgardo (who gets crumbs everywhere). She resents that they get the entire living room with a view of the George Washington Bridge, while all she gets is a tiny bedroom with a view of her sister (who snores). Until one night when no one comes, and it’s finally her chance! But as it turns out, sleeping on the cot in the living room isn’t all she thought it would be.

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TWINS VS. TRIPLETS #1: Back-to-School Blitz by Jennifer Torres, illustrated by Vanessa Flores (HarperCollins, June 1, 2021). Chapter Book. David can’t wait to go back to school and get far away from his trickster neighbors. But he’s in for a surprise when a set of equally prank-loving triplets move onto his block—and into his class!

Now the twins and triplets are battling for control of the playground and David is stuck in the middle. Can he end the prank war before recess gets cancelled for the whole year?

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Areli Es Una Dreamer (Areli Is a Dreamer Spanish Edition): Una Historia Real por Areli Morales, Beneficiaria de DACA Cover

ARELI IS A DREAMER: A True Story by Areli Morales, a DACA Recipient (Random House Studio, June 8, 2021). Picture Book. When Areli was just a baby, her mama and papa moved from Mexico to New York with her brother, Alex, to make a better life for the family–and when she was in kindergarten, they sent for her, too.

Everything in New York was different. Gone were the Saturdays at Abuela’s house, filled with cousins and sunshine. Instead, things were busy and fast and noisy. Areli’s limited English came out wrong, and schoolmates accused her of being illegal. But time passed, and Areli slowly became a New Yorker–although not an American citizen. “I could do anything here,” Areli says one day to the city sky. “Someday, I will.”

This is a moving story–one that resonates with millions of immigrants who make up the fabric of our country–about one girl living in two worlds, a girl whose DACA application was eventually approved and who is now living her American dream.

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CURSE OF THE FORGOTTEN CITY by Alex Aster (Sourcebooks Young Readers, June 8, 2021). Middle Grade. Tor is adjusting to life with the power of the Night Witch, especially with his best friends Engle and Melda by his side. But when a mysterious girl washes ashore claiming a band of cursed pirates is on their way to Emblem Island, life changes fast.

The girl, Gemma, is from an underwater city that was destroyed by the terrible Calavera pirates and she warns Tor they are now on their way to his home.

The trio of friends must come up with a plan to stop the pirates from getting an ancient relic that would give them the ability to control the high seas, while also protecting all they love from the new danger.

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FIFTEEN HUNDRED MILES FROM THE SUN by Jonny Garza Villa (Skyscape, June 8, 2021). Young Adult. Julián Luna has a plan for his life: Graduate. Get into UCLA. And have the chance to move away from Corpus Christi, Texas, and the suffocating expectations of others that have forced Jules into an inauthentic life.

Then in one reckless moment, with one impulsive tweet, his plans for a low-key nine months are thrown–literally–out the closet. The downside: the whole world knows, and Jules has to prepare for rejection. The upside: Jules now has the opportunity to be his real self.

Then Mat, a cute, empathetic Twitter crush from Los Angeles, slides into Jules’s DMs. Jules can tell him anything. Mat makes the world seem conquerable. But when Jules’s fears about coming out come true, the person he needs most is fifteen hundred miles away. Jules has to face them alone.

Jules accidentally propelled himself into the life he’s always dreamed of. And now that he’s in control of it, what he does next is up to him.

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FIRE WITH FIRE by Destiny Soria (HMH Books for Young Readers, June 8, 2021). Young Adult. Dani and Eden Rivera were both born to kill dragons, but the sisters couldn’t be more different. For Dani, dragon slaying takes a back seat to normal high school life, while Eden prioritizes training above everything else. Yet they both agree on one thing: it’s kill or be killed where dragons are concerned.

Until Dani comes face-to-face with one and forges a rare and magical bond with him. As she gets to know Nox, she realizes that everything she thought she knew about dragons is wrong. With Dani lost to the dragons, Eden turns to mysterious and alluring sorcerers to help save her sister. Now on opposite sides of the conflict, each sister will do whatever it takes to save the other. But the two are playing with magic that is more dangerous than they know, and there is another, more powerful enemy waiting for them both in the shadows.

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MOTH & BUTTERFLY: TA-DA! by Dev Petty, illustrated by Ana Aranda (Nancy Paulsen Books, June 8, 2021). Picture Book. Two caterpillar friends love what they have in common–lots of legs and a talent for chewing leaves into funny shapes. And when it’s time to build cocoons, they hang theirs side by side. “Happy metamorphosis,” says an older, more knowledgeable butterfly. And it is a happy metamorphosis indeed–for when the two emerge from their cocoons, they can fly! But so much else has changed–as one is now a moth, who flies by night, and the other is a butterfly, who flies by day. How will things work now? Fortunately some things never change–like true friends figuring out a way to be together, and happily flying into the sunset and sunrise.

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RAT FAIR by Leah Rose Kesslerillustrated by Cleonique Hilsaca (Pow! Kids Books, June 15, 2021). Picture Book. When a group of industrious, fun-loving rats find letters fallen from an Art Fair sign, they put the sign back together—with one small adjustment—and get to work creating a spectacular RAT FAIR. Their fair is ruined when humans sweep away everything the rats have created. Undaunted, the rats switch  gears and start working on their very own Rat Art Fair. As they are wrapping up their first day of the Rat Art Fair, a human child who has been following their progress from the sidelines catches them red handed, and the rats must decide if they can trust the child.

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SMALL NAP, LITTLE DREAM by Talia Aikens-Nuñezillustrated by Natalia Colombo (Nancy Paulsen Books, June 15, 2021). Picture Book. Young children are busy all day long–running and climbing, looking and laughing–and in the middle of a full day of fun, there’s nothing like taking a break for a small nap. This is the time of day to have a little dream–sueñito–that gives the afternoon some added sweetness.

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THE MORE THE MERRIER by David Martin, illustrated by Raissa Figueroa (Candlewick, June 15, 2021). Picture Book. Some like to kick their feet and bend their knees to the music. Others prefer to slip and slide . . . or swoop down . . . or skip high and low! Bear, Moose, Snake, and other forest animals dance to their own groove in a rhythmic celebration of individuality.

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Zuri Ray Tries Ballet Cover

ZURI RAY TRIES BALLET by Tami Charles, illustrated by Sharon Sordo (Quill Tree Books, June 15, 2021). Picture Book. Meet Zuri Ray. She’s always willing to go the extra mile for family and friends and is up for any challenge. At least, that was before her best friend, Jessie, asked her to join a ballet camp.

Now Zuri isn’t sure if she’s up for everything. While Jessie can’t wait to chassé and plié while wearing tight hair buns and frilly tutus, that doesn’t sound like Zuri at all! But she can’t let her friend down. Maybe classical ballet just needs a new spin.

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CHUNKY written and illustrated by Yehudi Mercado (Katherine Tegen Books, June 22, 2021). Graphic Novel/Middle Grade. Hudi needs to lose weight, according to his doctors. Concerned about the serious medical issue Hudi had when he was younger, his parents push him to try out for sports. Hudi would rather do anything else, but then he meets Chunky, his imaginary friend and mascot. Together, they decide to give baseball a shot. 

As the only Mexican and Jewish kid in his neighborhood, Hudi has found the cheerleader he never had. Baseball doesn’t go well (unless getting hit by the ball counts), but the two friends have a great time drawing and making jokes. While Hudi’s parents keep trying to find the right sport for Hudi, Chunky encourages him to pursue his true love—comedy.

But when Hudi’s dad loses his job, it gets harder for Hudi to chart his own course, even with Chunky’s guidance. Can Chunky help Hudi stay true to himself or will this friendship strike out?

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Latinx Book Deals: April 2021

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Compiled by Cecilia Cackley

This is a monthly series keeping track of the book deals announced by Latinx writers and illustrators. The purpose of this series is to celebrate book deals by authors and illustrators in our community and to advocate for more of them. If you are an agent and you have a Latinx client who just announced a deal, you can let me know on Twitter, @citymousedc. If you are a Latinx author or illustrator writing for children or young adults, and you just got a book deal, send me a message and we will celebrate with you! And if I left anyone out here, please let me know! Here’s to many more wonderful books in the years to come.

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April 1

Namrata Tripathi at Kokila has acquired, in a six-figure preempt, Golden State by William C. Morris Award-winning author Isabel Quintero (Gabi, a Girl in PiecesMy Papi Has a Motorcycle). The YA novel follows 18-year-old Maricela, who, after finding out her father has another family he’s been keeping secret from her, embarks on a road trip through California to meet her half-brother for the first time. Publication is scheduled for summer 2023. Author agent: Peter Steinberg, at Fletcher & Company.

Connie Hsu at Roaring Brook has bought Tomatoes in My Lunchbox, written by Costantia Manoli and illustrated by Magdalena Mora. This picture book features a girl who feels displaced in her new country when her teacher mispronounces her name, until she discovers that all it takes is one friend, one connection, to bring two worlds together. Publication is planned for spring/summer 2022. Illustrator agent: Steve Malk at Writers House.

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April 6

Mallory Kass at Scholastic has bought North American rights to Valentina Salazar Is Not a Monster Hunter by Zoraida Córdova, pitched as a genderbent Supernatural meets Unicorn Rescue Society. When a mythical egg surfaces on YouTube, the Salazar siblings steal the family van to race across the U.S. to save the egg before it hatches and goes viral—except their eldest sister and her dreaded monster hunters will stop at nothing to destroy the beast first. Publication is set for 2022. Author agents: Victoria Marini at Irene Goodman Literary, Suzie Townsend at New Leaf Literary & Media.

Erin Clarke at Knopf has acquired Sofía Acosta Makes a Scene by Emma Otheguy (Silver Meadows Summer) about a fifth-grade girl trying to figure out where she fits in her ballet-obsessed Cuban American family and her affluent suburban community. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022. Author agent:  Adriana Dominguez at Full Circle Literary.

Molly Yao Shen at Yeehoo Press has bought world rights to Who Is It, Whoodini? by Roman Yasiejko, illustrated by Gustavo Ramos. In this picture book, when a mysterious bird crashes in a tree, two owl sleuths fly off to gather the facts for the surprise reveal and rescue. Publication is scheduled for summer 2022 in the U.S. and mainland China. Illustrator agent: Mohamed Danawi at Illozoo Agency.

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April 8

Julia McCarthy at Atheneum has acquired world rights to I Want to Be a Vase, a picture book written by comedian, former SNL writer, and co-creator of Los Espookys Julio Torres, illustrated by 3D artist Julian Glander. This tale of a plunger who dreams of a more decorative life was inspired by Torres’s HBO comedy special My Favorite Shapes, which explores the interior dramas of everyday objects. Publication is set for summer 2022. Author agent: Richard Abate and Olivia Gerke at 3Arts.

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April 13

Andrea Welch at S&S/Beach Lane Books bought world rights to Just You and Me by Jennifer Ward and illustrated by Alexander Vidal, a picture book about unlikely pairs—like zebras and ostriches, hippos and egrets, and bees and flowers—that help each other survive in the wild. Publication is scheduled for fall 2021. Illustrator agent: Stefanie Sanchez Von Borstel.

Paula Wiseman at S&S/Wiseman has bought world rights to Beginning by Shelley Moore Thomas (From Tree to Sea), illustrated by Melissa Casatrillon. This picture book answers the question, “What does something become when it isn’t itself anymore?” and shows the wonder of what happens at the end of something that causes something else to begin. Publication is planned for spring 2022.

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April 15

Hannah Hill at Underlined has bought Bad at Love by Gabriela Martins (Like a Love Song). This YA romance follows Brazilian teen rocker Daniel, who has a bad boy reputation with the tabloids, and aspiring journalist Sasha, who’s determined to dig up dirt on Daniel—and finds herself falling for him along the way. But when she uncovers Daniel’s biggest secret, Sasha must decide if she’ll follow her heart or deliver the hottest story of the summer. Publication is set for summer 2022. Author agent: Chelsea Eberly at Greenhouse Literary.

Joanna Cárdenas at Kokila has bought world rights, at auction, in the two-book deal, to Angelica and La Guira by Angie Cruz (Dominicana), illustrated by Disney Television Animation story artist Luz Batista. The picture book debut follows a girl in Washington Heights who has been given a guira by her grandfather in the Dominican Republic and finds her musical voice—a power so strong that it brings her entire community together. Publication is scheduled for fall 2023. Author agent: Dara Hyde at Hill Nadell Literary.

Meredith Mundy at Abrams Appleseed has acquired world rights to Measuring a Year: A Rosh Hashanah Story by Linda Elovitz Marshall, illustrated by Zara González Hoang. Through verse, this tale encourages a child to thoughtfully look back over their past year. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022. Illustrator agent: Andrea Morrison at Writers House.

Amy Novesky at Cameron Kids has acquired world rights to two picture books written and illustrated by Mirelle Ortega. The first, Magic, is a story inspired by the author’s magical childhood growing up on a pineapple farm in Veracruz, Mexico. Publication is scheduled for fall 2022, and the second untitled book is scheduled for fall 2023. Author agent: James Burns at the Bright Agency.

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April 20

Rebecca Kuss at Inkyard has acquired, at auction, Salt and Sugar by Rebecca Carvalho. This telenovela-esque YA rom-com debut follows the grandchildren of two rival Brazilian bakeries who fall in love despite their families’ feud while working to win a contest that would save both of their bakeries from being driven out by a predatory supermarket chain. Claire Stetzer will edit. Publication is planned for fall 2022. Author agent:  Thao Le at Sandra Dijkstra Literary.

Maria Dismondy at Cardinal Rule Press has acquired world rights to Beto’s Super Cool Guayabera by YA author and a founder of Latinxs in Kid Lit Cindy L. Rodriguez, illustrated by Begoña Fernández Corbalan; Adam Blackman will edit. This picture book tells a story using a traditional Mexican shirt along with a creative boy trying to solve conflict in his family. Publication is planned for summer 2022. Illustrator agent: Erin Tisdel at Advocate Art.

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April 27

Sylvan Creekmore at Wednesday has bought, in a preempt, contemporary YA romance Ander and Santi Were Here by Jonny Garza Villa. Pitched as Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe meets The Sun Is Also a Star, a non-binary teen muralist falls for the newest waiter at their family’s taquería, sparking a romance made complicated when ICE shows up at the taquería and the love interest is a potential target. Publication is slated for spring 2023. Author agent: Claire Draper at the Bent Agency.

Marino at Delacorte has acquired, in a preempt, The Grimoire of Grave Fates, a multi-authored YA fantasy-mystery told in a series of interconnected, diverse POVs set in a world created by Hanna Alkaf (The Weight of The Sky) and Margaret Owen (The Merciful Crow), following the untimely murder of a professor at an esteemed wizarding school and the efforts of various students to track down his killer. Contributors will include Cam Montgomery, Darcie Little Badger, Hafsah Faizal, Jessica Lewis, Julian Winters, Karuna Riazi, Kat Cho, Kayla Whaley, Kwame Mbalia, L.L. McKinney, Marieke Nijkamp, Mason Deaver, Natasha Diaz, Preeti Chhibber, Randy Ribay, Tehlor Kay Mejia, Victoria Lee, and Yamile Saied Méndez. Pitched as a response to the exclusion of minority and LGBTQ+ groups from fantasy worlds, the creators will be partnering with We Need Diverse Books to establish initiatives for marginalized authors using their proceeds from the sale. Publication is set for fall 2022. Author agent: Victoria Marini at Irene Goodman Literary.

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April 29

Nick Thomas at Levine Querido has bought High Spirits by debut author Camille Gomera-Tavarez. The YA book interweaves stories exploring machismo, family, and identity in the Dominican diaspora. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022.

Kathleen Merz at Eerdmans has acquired I’ll Always Come Back to You by Charlotte Zolotow Award-winning author Carmen Tafolla, illustrated by Grace Zong, a picture book meant to make the many transitions of being away from parents less stressful and more fun. Publication is scheduled for spring 2022. Author agent: Stefanie Sanchez Von Borstel at Full Circle Literary.

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cecilia-02-original

Cecilia Cackley is a Mexican-American playwright and puppeteer based in Washington, DC. A longtime bookseller, she is currently the Children’s/YA buyer and event coordinator for East City Bookshop on Capitol Hill. Find out more about her art at www.ceciliacackley.com or follow her on Twitter @citymousedc