Posts Tagged: Greenwillow Books


Posted by | June 12, 2012 | No Comments

I’m not sure I know anyone as knowledgeable about children’s books as my colleague, National Accounts Manager Heather Doss.  She’s our human encyclopedia at meetings, a whiz in the booth at conferences, and an all-around terrific lady.  And today you are the lucky recipient of her genius!  Heather pulled together a round up of Classics, Redone:

“I’ll admit it: I’m a fan of the twisted classic genre. Whether it’s a retelling of a fairytale, myth or novel from the past, I love when authors take something you think you know and turn it on its head to give it a new perspective. While I think there will always be a place in curriculum for those classics we all read in high school and college, a remake can bring a fresh audience to them, and help to create a new fan base. Lucky for me, our Harper lists are chock full of titles that have a classic background:

Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin

Bethany Griffin has reimagined Edgar Allan Poe’s gothic horror story “The Masque of the Red Death,” creating a breathtakingly real city that’s coming apart at the seams, a riveting romantic triangle, and a heroine faced with heartbreaking choices. Hauntingly dark & romantic at the same time!

Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson

TIGER LILY combines the rich mythology of Peter Pan and the lush setting of Neverland to create a truly unique teen romance; told from the point of view of Tinkerbell & focusing on the Indian Princess whose backstory is vague in the original story.

For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund

FOR DARKNESS SHOWS THE STARS is a breathtaking romance about the choice between protecting your heart and opening yourself to the one person who could break it; inspired by Jane Austen’s PERSUASION.

Entwined by Heather Dixon

In this retelling of the classic tale “The Twelve Dancing Princesses,” the eldest princess must fight to save her family—and her heart—from an ancient dark magic within the palace walls; a romantic fantasy with a darker edge.

Radiant Darkness by Emily Whitman

Persephone, the Queen of the Underworld, finally gets a chance to set the story straight in RADIANT DARKNESS. She wasn’t taken to the underworld against her will—she fell in love with Hades, and chose to be his queen and leave her overbearing mother behind.


Lost Girl by Sangu Mandanna

Part dystopian, part sci-fi thriller, part romance, LOST GIRL is an electrifying YA debut about a clone fighting against the system that created her—and finding the courage to be true to her humanity; loosely inspired by FRANKENSTEIN.

Ten by Gretchen McNeil

In this horror novel loosely inspired by Agatha Christie’s AND THEN THERE WERE NONE, ten teens head to a house party at a remote island mansion off the Washington coast…only for them to be picked off by a killer one by one.

The Turning by Francine Prose

A mind-bending and chilling retelling of THE TURN OF THE SCREW for modern teens, by nationally acclaimed, former President of PEN and award-winning author Francine Prose!”

Thanks, Heather! We love this trend (if you can even call it a trend!), since it’s so helpful when booktalking and recommending new favorites. Any other great classics-with-a-twist that we should read?


Posted by | May 18, 2012 | No Comments

This Wednesday, we plied our local librarian friends with coffee and treats to meet us very very very early in the morning to hear about our Fall 2012 titles, straight from the mouths of our truly masterful editors. Our attendees live-tweeted under the hashtag #harperfallpreview and it was really exciting for us to see those enthusiastic tweets roll in. Thanks, guys!

Everyone with their listening caps on.

Greenwillow Editor Martha Mihalick (follow her on Twitter @MarthaMihalick) and VP/Publisher Virginia Duncan holding up the f&g of Michael Hall’s September 2012 title, CAT TALE, one that prompted a lot of great discussion. We always learn something new from librarians!

Balzer + Bray Editor Kristin Rens and VP/Publisher Alessandra Balzer holding books from their fall list: DEFIANCE, by C.J. Redwine, and THE OTHER NORMALS, by Ned Vizzini.

Now, for some great This Meets That’s:

  • “Dan Brown for 10 year olds” — THE SECRET PROPHECY, by Herbie Brennan.
  • “Scott Westerfeld meets Lauren Oliver” — THE LOST GIRL, by Sangu Mandanna.
  • “The Goonies meets The Walking Dead” — GRAVEDIGGERS: MOUNTAIN OF BONES, by Christopher Krovatin.
  • “My So-Called Life meets Twilight” — DRAIN YOU, by M. Beth Bloom. (full disclosure… this one killed me!)

Can you believe that in a little more than a month, we’ll be at the ALA Annual meeting in Anaheim, California?  Because we sure can’t (cue folders flying, frantic packing).  But if you’ll be there too, please make sure to stop by, say hello, and grab galleys of the titles above.  Booth #2558– see you there!


Posted by | February 28, 2012 | No Comments

Wow– we have some really fantastic books to wish a Happy Book Birthday to today! They’re ALMOST Leap Year book babies, but not quite…

PANDEMONIUM, by Lauren Oliver. In the highly anticipated sequel to DELIRIUM, Lena completely transforms herself into a warrior for the resistance in order to push Alex and her old life far from her mind and heart.  Epic and yet heart-breakingly close, you’ll savor every minute of this one.

PENNY AND HER SONG, by Kevin Henkes.  Meet Penny– Kevin Henkes’ newest mouse, and his first foray into the world of beginning readers!

PARTIALS, by Dan Wells.  Humanity’s only hope… may not be human at all.  In this exciting thriller, a small group living on what used to be Long Island may be the only humans left after a devastating robot revolution, and Kira finds herself unexpectedly at the forefront of their survival.

Z IS FOR MOOSE, by Kelly Bingham, illustrations by Paul O. Zelinsky.  Fiesty but well-meaning Moose inserts himself into every page of this ABC book that’s already garnering multiple terrific starred reviews!


Posted by | February 23, 2012 | No Comments

Although I must confess that I’ve never have been able to see a man in it, the moon is not only beautiful, but mythical and magical, especially for little ones.  Imagine our excitement when brainstorming a storytime theme that could include our brand new beautiful picture book MOONLIGHT when we realized that the perfect answer was staring us in the face: the moon!


Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Oh Mister Sun (how sweet is the “Mister Moon” verse?)


MOONLIGHT, by Helen V. Griffith, illustrations by Laura Dronzek

KITTEN’S FIRST FULL MOON, written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes

…and maybe you saw this one coming? GOODNIGHT MOON, by Margaret Wise Brown, pictures by Clement Hurt


Have kids create their own moonlight scene using chalk (or oil) pastels on black construction paper.  The bright marks made by the pastels are the highlights of moonlight on the nighttime scene.


Posted by | February 13, 2012 | 1 Comment

We haven’t forgotten about New Voices, and we hope you haven’t either!  Our next book in this series promoting debut authors, KISS CRUSH COLLIDE, by Christina Meredith, we’ve been saving for this very week, so perhaps you can guess what it’s about?  Good answer– love.  While this is a steamy novel about that kind of attraction that hits you like a truck and holds you prisoner, it’s also a novel about family, duty, obligation, and understanding.

Don’t just take our word for it: READ AN EXCERPT, free, here:

Leah’s life is going according to plan. Her mother’s plan. Cheerleading captain, valedictorian, college, and then marrying her high school sweetheart. Just like her two older sisters. But Leah wants more. More than Shane’s right hand on her thigh as he drives her around. More than the stifling life set out for her. So when the guy who parks cars at the country club offers her his strong, tan hand, he’s not just helping her out of the car. He’s pulling her into a whole new path, one filled with surprises, and journeys, and freedom. A classic American love story between the daughter of privilege and the boy from the wrong side of the tracks.

Greenwillow publisher Virginia Duncan, Christina’s editor, had this to say about KISS CRUSH COLLIDE:

When I first read Kiss Crush Collide (it was called Counting Cars then—which is a fun title once you’ve read the book and actually counted the cars), I fell hard for Porter and his green eyes. Who was this guy? And isn’t he pretty much the stuff of a dream summer romance?

Leah intrigued me. She has everything. Beauty, brains, money—and she already has a boyfriend to die for, and parents and sisters who love her and only want what is best for her. The thing is, Leah isn’t sure what “best” means anymore. She isn’t rebelling. She isn’t freaking out. Or doing drugs. She’s just become vaguely uneasy in her own skin.

Enter Porter.

Reading this manuscript made me remember seeing Dirty Dancing for the first time. It made me want to go on a John Hughes movie jag. Reading this manuscript made me remember how much I love contemporary fiction. I admired the rawness of the story and the honesty of the writing. Do I think Porter and Leah are headed for a happily-ever-after-forever future? No. But I love the idea that a single person can change your life forever and open your eyes to a path you might never have seen or attempted by yourself. And I love that this can (will!) happen on a golf course, or in the school parking lot, or in the kitchen breakfast nook, or next to the old quarry in a borrowed car—rather than in a far-flung dystopia. Thanks, Christina!

Read, ruminate on love in all its forms, and stay tuned for tomorrow, when we’ll Open the Book with debut novelist, Christina Meredith!

Blogs We’re Reading

Posted by | July 26, 2011 | No Comments

It’s Vacation Time around the office lately, especially now that ALA is over.  But one of the delights of being offline is getting to catch up once you’re back online: it’s always fun to see that the electronic world has continued to spin even in your absence.  Here are some of the posts I’ve read and loved since being back in the office:

What are you reading and loving?  And how are your summer reading clubs going?  Have you seen more or less sign-ups?  We’d love to hear from you!

~ Laura

Turning the Page with…Heather Dixon

Posted by | April 21, 2011 | No Comments

In this breathtaking retelling of “The Twelve Dancing Princesses”, Azalea, the eldest princess, must fight to save her family—and her heart—from an ancient dark magic within the palace walls.  In its starred review for ENTWINED, Booklist said, “Full of mystery, lush settings, and fully orbed characters, [Heather] Dixon’s debut is both suspenseful and rewarding.”

And I can’t help but editorialize here: can you believe that cover?  Sooo gorgeous.  Do you think I can get away with wearing that dress to the Newbery-Caldecott banquet at ALA this year?  Or is that over-the-top?

Photo by John Paul Espinosa

We recently put Heather Dixon in the hotseat and, despite being a debut novelist, she handled our grueling interview with aplomb and deftness.

What time is your alarm clock set for?

4:30 am.  I hit the snooze about 37 times.

Favorite book from childhood?

<!–[if !vml]–><!–[endif]–>Crab Apple!

It’s the story of a crabby crab apple that goes around yelling at birds and worms.   I can tell you this book formed a lot of my comedic timing as a child.

If you weren’t an author/illustrator, what job would you like to have?

I think I’d like to be a professional taste-tester.  I’d wander around places like Costco and Sam’s Club and try out all their food samples and hoard the little spoons and plastic cups and stuff.  I pretty much do this all day now so how awesome would it be to get paid for it!!

How many stamps are in your passport?
What’s a passport?

Favorite word?

Fie.  It’s short and it is also fun to say.  Fiefiefiefiefie.

Scourge is a close second.

What are you reading right now?

“Making Money” by Terry Pratchett.

…and Crabby Crabapple.

Finish this sentence: “I always smile when…”

Oh, I always just smile.  It’s my favorite!

Funniest (or most interesting) question from a fan?

I actually haven’t met a talking fan yet.  I expect they’d say whirrrrrr.

Thanks, Heather, for answering our questions (and introducing us to the magic of Crabby Crabapple)!  Visit Heather at her blog, Story Monster (where you find out that she’s a stellar artist as well as a great writer!)!

Buzz Alert: PERFECT SQUARE by Michael Hall

Posted by | March 31, 2011 | No Comments

Who knew that a perfect square could be transformed into so many things?  In his stunning follow-up to last year’s MY HEART IS LIKE A ZOO, Michael Hall creates rivers, mountains, and parks out of a single square of paper.  The storytime possibilities are limitless: give kids a square of paper and scissors and see what they can create.  So often as a librarian, I would create elaborate artwork for the kids to do during storytime but, sometimes, all you need is a single piece of paper.

What’s buzzy about PERFECT SQUARE?  It has received FOUR STARRED REVIEWS!  Here’s what they’re saying:

“A smart lesson in thinking outside the box (or the square).” ~ Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Memorable for reading aloud and terrific for inspiring creative play with the simplest materials.”  ~ Booklist (starred review)

“As its week progresses, the narrative turn of events in the square’s world encourages page-turning to discover the results. What will the square do next? This is a not-to-be-missed adventure for all young readers.” ~ School Library Journal (starred review)

“Young readers will absorb the visual lessons effortlessly and with delight.”  ~ Kirkus (starred review)

Here are some more wonderful links for you:

PERFECT SQUARE (ISBN 9780061915130) is available now.

Diana Wynne Jones

Posted by | March 28, 2011 | 2 Comments

Many of  you have heard the sad news of Diana Wynne Jones’ passing by now.  Her long-time editor, Virginia Duncan, gave us the news via email and, with her permission, we’d like to share Virginia’s letter that also served as a lovely tribute to a remarkable and legendary writer:

I am very sorry to let you all know that Diana Wynne Jones died on Saturday after a long illness. I know that I speak for everyone at Greenwillow Books—both past and present—when I say that it was an extraordinary honor and privilege for this imprint to publish Diana Wynne Jones in the United States for more than thirty-five years.

Diana had a bad back (and a legendary travel jinx), and so she had not made the trip to the United States in recent years. I did, though, have the chance to meet her and spend time with her at her enchanted home in Bristol, and, along with Susan Hirschman, at a literary festival in Scotland. I remember we had dinner in a Scottish castle. It didn’t move, but the entire event was magical.

Diana had a robust and justly famous relationship with her American copyeditors. Just a few days ago she had sent in her very firm rejections and dismissals to the copyediting of her next, and last, Greenwillow book, EARWIG AND THE WITCH. We will publish EARWIG AND THE WITCH, with illustrations by Paul O. Zelinsky, in February 2012.

For those of you who have not yet read Diana Wynne Jones, you are in for a treat. My favorite is HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE. Or DOGSBODY. Or any of the Chrestomanci books. In his tribute to Diana Wynne Jones on the Greenwillow blog last year, bookseller Peter Glassman offered an excellent introduction to Diana’s work. You can find that here:

Diana Wynne Jones is considered by many to be one of the greatest writers of fantasy for children ever. We will miss her.


Posted by | December 6, 2010 | 2 Comments

Some may argue with me when I say that conferences aren’t all about the books: conferences are about the people you meet.  In addition to the super cool librarians and teachers we meet, we also meet amazing authors and illustrators whose work we love to support.  Here are a few of the folks that we spent time with at NCTE and ALAN this year:

Lauren Oliver (spectacularly backed by editor Rosemary Brosnan) signs books for a young fan (who, incidentally, attended nearly every signing we had during the course of the conference)

Patty Rosati, our school & library marketing director, reads to LeUyen Pham‘s gorgeous son!

Megan Whalen Turner speaks at ALAN

And lest you think it’s all work and no play with us (but you probably don’t think that, right?), here are a couple of fun mugging shots:

Patty and Robin pose for the camera before the exhibit hall opens (note the open loading door in the background)

Patty and Dina Sherman (Disney-Hyperion school & library marketing director) give Mickey a kiss

And, with that, I think we can officially call NCTE and ALAN a smashing success!  See you at ALA Midwinter in San Diego!

P.S. Haven’t had enough of conference photos?  Check out the following blogs for more: Under the Greenwillow (and this one, especially!), A Year of Reading (and their ALAN coverage), Kate Messner (and here), YA Love, and Cindy Pon has GREAT coverage (ALAN Day 1 – including yummy food, ALAN Day 2)

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