Puffin has signed up an "Amelia Fang meets Rosie Revere" adventure series from debut author Lucy Brandt, aimed at inspiring a generation of inventors and scientists.
Emma Jones, Puffin commissioning editor, acquired world rights in two titles in the Leonara Bolt series from Hannah Weatherill at Northbank Talent. The titles, for readers aged 6+ years, will both be illustrated by Florida-based Gladys Jose, perhaps best-known for her work on Denene Millner's Fresh Princess series. The first book, Leonara Bolt: Secret Inventor will launch in April 2021 with Leonara Bolt: Deep Sea Calamity following in the summer.
Jones said: “Leonora is the spirited heroine that every kid needs right now—her creativity is her superpower, and the wacky adventure that she embarks on with her new friend Jack (and Twitchy Nibbles, the otter) is totally irresistible."
The "perfect combination of adventure and invention" has orphaned Lenonara living on a remote island and spending her days making crazy inventions. But then one day a boy named Jack washes ashore on an inflatable lobster to say his evil uncle Luther has been stealing Leonara's inventions and selling them on, which starts a "laugh-out-loud adventure complete with a furry otter, singing sea captain and very secret society".
Weatherill said: "Lucy has created a brilliant, funny, feisty heroine in Leonora, and I can’t wait for young readers to meet her, Jack, Twitchy Nibbles and the rest of the fabulous cast."
Brandt is based in Brighton and has worked for two decades in digital marketing and technology roles. She said: "I have had so much fun writing the madcap world of Leonora Bolt and I hope it can inspire budding inventors to harness their creative spirit."