Hachette Children’s Group (HCG) has signed a picture book text by actress Alison Steadman.
Spider!, Steadman’s first book, is about a small boy who thinks he hates spiders, until he befriends one. It will be illustrated by Mark Chambers and published under the Hodder Children’s Books imprint in October.
Steadman, who has starred in films and TV programmes such as "Abigail's Party", "Gavin and Stacey", "Price and Prejudice" and "Topsy Turvy", is the latest celebrity to sign with HCG. The publisher has recently also struck deals with Danny Baker, Jessica Ennis-Hill, Mo Farah and Levison Wood.
Steadman said: “A young friend of mine, Rafael, gave me the idea for the book – he was afraid of spiders, and I had a chat to him about how they aren’t scary at all. His mum told me the next day that I’d completely converted him, and that sparked an idea for a book.”
World rights were acquired by Anne McNeil, senior publisher at Hodder Children’s. She brokered the deal with Tiffany Grayson at ARG Talent for Alison Steadman and Nicky Lander from The Bright Agency for Mark Chambers.