Puffin has acquired rights to The Drama Llama, a "hilarious and heartwarming" picture book about emotional wellbeing written by Rachel Morrisroe (pictured, top) and illustrated by Ella Okstad (pictured, below).
The book was acquired as part of a six-book deal with Morrisroe that included three picture books with illustrator Steven Lenton. Editorial director Joe Marriott acquired world rights in all languages from Lydia Silver at the Darley Anderson Children’s Book Agency, and the illustrations from Paul Moreton at Bell Lomax Moreton.
Puffin will publish the picture book in paperback in March 2022. The book follows Alex Allen, whose worries take shape in the form of a llama who grows bigger and more dramatic as his worries increase. Puffin said: "This picture book taps into an important message with a light touch, plenty of heart and a joyful read-aloud rhyming text."
Marriott said: "Rachel Morrisroe is an exceptionally skilful new picture book voice whose writing brims with wit, anarchic fun and child-friendly heart. She has delivered pitch-perfect text after pitch-perfect text and I’m over the moon to be able to commit to so many of them and launch her picture book career here at Puffin. We’ve all fallen in love with the drama llama, and we can’t wait for him to get out into the world and help soothe worries everywhere!”
Morrisroe added: “It’s the stuff of dreams to be working with the extraordinarily talented team at Puffin on six of my picture book texts. I am a huge fan of Ella’s, so I nearly fell off my chair with excitement when I found out she was illustrating The Drama Llama. Her illustrations are hilariously joyful and I’m so excited for young readers and their grown-ups to meet Alex and his cheeky llama.”
Silver commented: “From the very first text that we shared with Puffin, Rachel and I have been bowled over by the team’s enthusiasm, energy and creative genius. Rachel is a born storyteller, and Ella’s artwork has really brought Alex and his overly dramatic llama to life. Puffin’s support and commitment to The Drama Llama, and all Rachel’s books, has been fantastic, and we can’t wait for them to reach young readers.”
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