NEW YORK, March 24 /PRNewswire/ -- HarperCollins Publishers announced
today that it has acquired world rights to The Happiest Hippo in the World,
a children's picture book by international bestselling author Danielle
Steel. The new book, by the author of 88 adult novels, including Honor
Thyself, Sisters, and the "Max and Martha" series for children, tells the
story of a baby hippo who happens to be born green instead of gray and
learns with the help of a little boy to love himself despite being
different. Both delightful and heartwarming, the book was written by Ms.
Steel for her son Nicholas Traina when he was little and is expected to be
published in Fall 2009. Illustrations will be by celebrated artist Margaret
The deal was negotiated by Kate Jackson, SVP/Associate Publisher,
Editor-in-Chief of HarperCollins Children's Books, with agent Kate Schafter
of Janklow & Nesbit Associates.
"We are delighted to welcome Danielle Steel to our list," said Kate
Jackson. "She is a wonderful author and we know that this charming project
will be embraced by young readers all over the world."
Danielle Steel said, "The message of the book is that it's okay to be
different. Most of us try to fit in to what's expected of us, and be like
everyone else, and sometimes the pieces just don't fit. I wanted to
reassure children (and even grown-ups) that it's wonderful to be different
sometimes, and sometimes being different is the best thing of all!"
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Since 1981, Ms. Steel has been a permanent fixture on the New York
Times hardcover and paperback bestsellers list. Twenty-one of Ms. Steel's
novels have been adapted for television, each earning high ratings and
critical acclaim, including two Golden Globe nominations for Jewels, a
four-hour miniseries that starred Anthony Andrews.
Ms. Steel is also the author of several children's books, including
"Max and Martha," a ten-book series of books for young readers, and four
"Freddy" books. Her nonfiction work His Bright Light, about the life and
death of her son Nicholas Traina, released by Delacorte Press in September
1998, immediately jumped to the New York Times Nonfiction bestseller list.
Her books are published in 28 languages in 47 countries.
With nine children of her own, family, children, and young people are
the central focus of her life, and her passion, which frequently shows in
her writing. She deals with the themes that address the most pressing
issues of real life, which makes her books universal, and touch so many
people. She is fascinated by the pressing life situations that affect us
all, how people handle them and are often transformed as a result. And her
novels have explored subjects such as kidnapping, incest, mental illness,
suicide, death, divorce, adoption, marriage, loss, cancer, war, among
others. She also frequently writes about historical themes, shedding new
light on familiar historical events with meticulously accurate research.
She also founded and runs two charitable foundations, dedicated to the
support of hands-on treatment of mental illness, and the prevention of
child abuse and suicide. She had a contemporary art gallery in San
Francisco for several years, and is an avid supporter of emerging artists.
She is now a guest curator at a gallery in San Francisco.
In 2002, Ms. Steel was decorated by the French government as an
"Officier" of the distinguished Order of Arts and Letters, for her lifetime
contribution to world culture.
Despite her varied interests and activities, Ms. Steel leads an
extremely private family-centered life. She lives in San Francisco and
ABOUT HARPERCOLLINS PUBLISHERS:
HarperCollins Children's Books is one of the leading publishers of
children's books. Respected worldwide for its tradition of publishing
quality, award-winning books for young readers, HarperCollins is home to
many timeless treasures -- including Charlotte's Web, The Chronicles of
Narnia, Goodnight Moon, Where the Sidewalk Ends, and Where the Wild Things
Are; and popular new classics -- including A Series of Unfortunate Events,
Warriors, and Fancy Nancy. HarperCollins Children's Books is a division of
HarperCollins Publishers, one of the leading English language publishers in
the world and a subsidiary of News Corporation (NYSE: NWS, NWS.A; ASX: NCP,
NCPDP). Headquartered in New York, HarperCollins has publishing groups in
the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and Australasia. You can visit HarperCollins
Children's Books at http://www.harpercollinschildrens.com and HarperCollins
Publishers at http://www.harpercollins.com.
SOURCE HarperCollins Publishers