Scholastic signs 'significant' new deal with Vashti Hardy

Rights - Children Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Three-book deal following success of Brightstorm

Scholastic has signed three further novels by Vashti Hardy, author of Brightstorm: A Sky-Ship Adventure. Linas Alsenas, senior commissioning editor, bought world rights through Kate Shaw at the Viney Shaw Agency. The "significant" deal includes a novel called Wildspark (May this year), a Brightstorm sequel for early 2020, and a further fantasy novel for early 2021.

Brightstorm was the Bookseller Association's Children's Book of the Season in spring 2018, and is on the shortlist for Waterstones' Children's Book Prize for Younger Fiction. It was nominated for the Books Are My Bag Middle Grade Award, the Blue Peter Book Award, and Stockton Children's Book of the Year. Rights have been sold in six countries.

In the world of Brightstorm, explorers were the most revered profession, but in Wildspark, it's inventors. Wildspark is set in the the city of Medlock, where a secretive guild of inventors has brought spirits of the dead back into the world, harnessing them in animal-like machines. Young apprentice Prue is on a mission to bring her brother back to life, but to find him she needs the ghost machines to remember the people they used to be. And if she succeeds, she puts all of society at risk.

Hardy said: "I'm delighted to have worked on my second book with the brilliant team at Scholastic UK with editor Linas Alsenas, and literary agent Kate Shaw. I can't wait for readers to meet Prue and friends (and foes), and for them to dive headfirst into this whole new world of invention!"

Alsenas said: "Fans of Brightstorm are going to go nuts for Vashti's new book; it's a dazzling, mind-ploughing adventure that features bold characters in a totally riveting mystery. The world also raises fascinating questions about invention, politics - even life itself."

Shaw said: "Vashti's creative energy is matched by her tireless promotion in schools, libraries, bookshops and festivals. It's lovely to see this hard work and talent, matched by Scholastic's, resulting in such success. So this feels like the perfect moment to commit to Scholastic as Vashti's publishing home for her next three books."

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