NEW YORK, Jan. 31, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, announced today that in Fall 2011 it will launch the first two books in a new series, The Guardians of Childhood, by famed author, illustrator, and Emmy Award winner William Joyce. The Man in the Moon, the first picture book in the series, will be written and illustrated by William Joyce. The first chapter book, Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King, will be coauthored by William Joyce and Laura Geringer, and illustrated by Joyce. Atheneum Books for Young Readers Publisher Justin Chanda and Editorial Director Caitlyn Dlouhy negotiated the deal with agent Michael Siegel from Michael Siegel & Associates, Inc., which includes translation and audio rights.
This highly anticipated series-seven picture books and six chapter books-will be Joyce's first children's books published in more than a decade. The Guardians of Childhood series tells the formative stories of childhood legends including Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman, and the Easter Bunny. Laura Geringer of the award-winning Laura Geringer Books will edit the picture books, with Caitlyn Dlouhy as in-house editor. Caitlyn Dlouhy will edit the chapter books.
The next three books are slated to release in 2012 to coincide with the Fall 2012 release of Rise of the Guardians, inspired by the book series. The film from DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. (Nasdaq: DWA) is directed by Peter Ramsey and codirected by William Joyce.
William Joyce said, "I've been working on a unified mythology for the icons of childhood since my daughter was born in 1991. As a parent I felt that Santa Claus, the Man in the Moon, all of them had become a little diminished. They deserve to be thought of as grand, heroic, epic. If Spiderman has an origins mythology, then why not the characters we actually believed in? Their stories became my mission. It's great to see it finally taking shape."
"Helping a legend like William Joyce bring his vision to life is a dream come true for all of us at Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing," said Jon Anderson, Executive VP & Publisher. "The Guardians of Childhood will delight the imaginations of children and their parents for generations to come."
William Joyce has put his personal stamp on all types of children's media. His award-winning picture books include George Shrinks, Dinosaur Bob and His Adventures With the Family Lazardo, and Santa Calls. He's won three Emmy awards for his Rolie Polie Olie animated series, developed character concepts for Toy Story and A Bug's Life, and made animated films including Robots and Meet the Robinsons. He's currently codirecting the DreamWorks Animation release of Rise of the Guardians (Fall 2012). He is also writing, designing, and producing The Leaf Men. He is also the cofounder of Moonbot Studios, whose first animated short film, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, is making its world premiere at the Santa Barbara Film Festival on February 5, 2011.
Laura Geringer is the author of many popular books for children, including the fantasy Sign of the Qin, Book One in the Outlaws of Moonshadow Marsh series, and the bestselling A Three Hat Day, illustrated by Arnold Lobel. She serves on the board of First Book, a nonprofit organization, whose global mission is to get books into the hands of children who can't afford them.
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SOURCE Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing