HCG strikes three-book deal for 'heartwarming' series with Maz Evans

HCG strikes three-book deal for 'heartwarming' series with Maz Evans

Author Maz Evans has signed a three-book deal with Hachette Children's Group for a "hilarious" new series for younger readers, starting with The Exploding Life of Scarlett Fife.

Rachel Wade, senior commissioning editor at Hachette Children’s Group, secured world rights in a three-book deal made with Veronique Baxter at David Higham.

Aimed at readers aged 7+ years, the series launches with The Exploding Life of Scarlett Fife in May 2021, with the second following in May 2022. The series will contain illustrations by Chris Jevons, who as an experienced illustrator has worked on more than 50 books worldwide.

The Exploding Life of Scarlett Fife is billed as "beautifully illustrated", "heartwarming" and "laugh-out-loud", perfect for every child and parent who has ever lost control of their feelings as well as for fans of Matilda and Charlie Changes into a Chicken.

The synopsis reads: "Scarlett Fife has Big Feelings. And when she has Big Feelings, they explode out of her like an over-squeezed stress ball. Scarlett’s in big trouble after a Big Feelings episode leads to a runaway hamster getting into a vicar’s trousers at her Aunty’s engagement party. Very soon, Scarlett notices that every time she pushes her feelings down, something explodes. Like, actually explodes. It might be her teacher’s slimy green smoothie. Or the huge pile of elephant poo at the zoo. Scarlett just hopes she doesn’t get mad at Aunty’s wedding—that wedding cake is huge…"

Wade said: "It’s such a huge pleasure to be able to welcome Maz Evans to the HCG list, and with a series that marks such an exciting new direction for her. Maz always writes from the heart, and makes kids laugh uproariously at the same time—as well as being an exceptionally hard worker, visiting schools and inspiring readers up and down the country, all year round! I’m utterly thrilled to be working on this with her."

Evans, whose debut was Who Let the Gods Out, and who also has been a songwriter, TV journalist and scriptwriter, commented: "I could burst like exploding elephant dung with the excitement of bringing Scarlett into the world with the wonderful team at Hachette Children’s Group. Joining their hallowed list is a privilege indeed and creating these books together has made me fall in love with writing all over again. I adore Scarlett and I hope that a new audience will love her too—just be sure to step away when she gets cross!"