Two of our Clients Make March 2015 Best YA Book List

in Books, Harvey Weinstein, Lauren Oliver, Paige McKenzie, Paper Lantern Lit, Sunshine Girl

March, with its celebration of St. Patrick’s Day, is known as the luckiest month of the year. And if you’re a young adult reader, you’re definitely going to feel lucky. This month is so chock full of exciting new young adult titles that it physically pained me to have to narrow it down to a hefty 17. (I know, my job is so hard.) Hope you invested in some speed reading classes, because you’re going to need them to tear through all of these books.

Titans in the YA space, such as Lauren Oliver, David Levithan, and Andrew Smith, all have new books for you, when really it would be a big month if even one of them did. Debut authors that killed it in 2014, such as Emery Lord and Sally Green, are back with hugely anticipated second novels, and let’s just say they aren’t suffering from the sophomore slump. There are sequels you desperately need to get your hands on because you’re still dying over a cliffhanger ending. And there are debut YA authors whose names are already echoing through the publishing world, like Tommy Wallach and David Arnold.

Whether you’re into ghost stories, magical realism, historical fiction, or the scripts to an epic musical production (seriously), you’re going to be lucky enough to find what you want, or desperately need, in March.

Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver (HarperCollins; Mar 10)

 After the success of Before I Fall, the Delirum trilogy, and last year’s Panic, any Lauren Oliver book is an event. And Vanishing Girls can stand up to the hype. And I couldn’t be happier to say the following sentence: In this book, the amazing author is focusing on the bond of sisterhood. Nick and Dara were tied at the hip before an accident pulled them apart. Dara’s supermodel-stunning face is scarred, and the two can barely speak to each other. Then, Dara disappears around the same time as young girl, and Nick makes it her mission to find out what happened to her. Rumor has it, if you loved We Were Liars, you’re going to love Vanishing Girls, so instead of clear words I’m going to say AHH!!

The Haunting of Sunshine Girl by Paige McKenzie (Weinstein Books; Mar 24)

You’ve probably heard the names Paige McKenzie and The Haunting of Sunshine Girl before, so you’re giddy far before I can even explain this to you. You see, McKenzie has a YouTube series called “The Haunting of Sunshine Girl” (with more than 100 million views, thank you very much) about a teenage girl named Sunshine who finds that she is living in a haunted house. Moreover, she has to save her mother from the evil ghosts who haunt her. The story is super-entertaining, and it has the backing of horror icons R.L. Stine and Wes Craven, so it’s no slouch in the scary department either.

Client Lauren Oliver to adapt screenplay.

in Film, Lauren Oliver, Panic, Universal

Universal Hires Author Lauren Oliver to Adapt Her Own Book ‘Panic’ universal-studios-logo-wallpaper

Sometimes the best screenwriter to adapt a novel is the novel’s author herself.

Universal has followed this logic, as it just hired Lauren Oliver to pen the screenplay of the studio’s adaptation of her YA novel Panic.

Universal picked up the rights in a bidding war in 2013 in advance of the book’s spring 2014 release from Harper Teen, an imprint of HarperCollins. The book was a hot property due to the success of Oliver’s previous novels, the New York Times best-selling Delirium trilogy and the 2010 hit Before I Fall, which was set up at Fox 2000.

Marc Platt and Adam Siegel are producing Panic.

The story takes place in a small town and features a cast of teens who are competing in fear trials for a chance to win a prize. Alliances are forged, secrets are revealed and first loves face tests of courage.

Having the author of the book also write the adaptation is one of the current hot Hollywood trends, especially following the success of Gillian Flynn in writing the script for Gone Girl, which proved to be a commercial and critical hit. Dennis Lehane adapted The Drop from his own short story Animal Rescue.

Oliver is, at 32 years old, published in 35 countries and the author of nine books since making her debut in 2010. She is also the co-founder of Paper Lantern Lit, an author-book packaging company that has sold 40 titles to major publishers to date. While YA is her main concern (her latest book Vanishing Girls will be published in March), last fall she released her first adult novel titled Rooms.

UTA negotiated the deal in conjunction with Oliver’s literary agent, Stephen Barbara at InkWell Management.

Universal’s vp production Maradith Frenkel and creative executive Chloe Yellin are overseeing the project for the studio.