Firefly Press snaps up Clarke's debut

Firefly Press snaps up Clarke's debut

Firefly Press has acquired book blogger and school librarian Jo Clarke's debut, middle-grade detective story Libby and the Parisian Puzzle, set in a school that travels the world. 

The first in a projected series, the book will be illustrated by Becka Moor and is slated for April 2022. World English rights were acquired from Alice Williams at Alice Williams Literary.

"Libby is excited but nervous when she’s sent to live with her aunt, while her mother is working abroad," reads the synopsis for Libby and the Parisian Puzzle. "Her aunt runs an extraordinary travelling school that moves from country to country. Libby joins it in Paris, where she is just starting to find her feet and make friends, when she’s devastated to see her aunt, the headteacher, arrested for a daring robbery. Can Libby and her new best friend Connie find out who set her up and save her aunt?"

Editor Janet Thomas said: "Libby is everything a reader wants in a detective, brilliant at solving puzzles and driven by bravery, loyalty and kindness. Jo has given her a genuinely satisfying mystery to solve, full of clues for readers to spot. It’s packed with vivid characters, good and bad, that will burst to life in Becka Moor’s illustrations. And who wouldn’t love to go to a school that travels the world?! It’s a truly special story and I am so excited we’re publishing it."

Clarke said: "I am thrilled to be publishing my debut with Firefly Press, its enthusiasm and excitement about Libby and the Parisian Puzzle from the start convinced me that I had found the perfect home. I'm a huge fan of illustrated fiction so am absolutely delighted that the brilliant Becka Moor will be illustrating my book. As a school librarian and book blogger I have a huge passion for children's books and it's my dream come true to have my own book published. I've loved writing this book and can't wait for readers to meet Libby and Connie as they travel the world, solving mysteries along the way."

Author–illustrator team Jo Clarke left and Becka Moor