Penguin Random House division Puffin has sold US rights to The Unadoptables, the debut novel by Hana Tooke, to Viking Children’s Books.
The Unadoptables is a middle-grade mystery story about a group of orphans in 19th century The Netherlands. Milou and four fellow orphans are deemed “unadoptable” when they arrive at an orphanage, and when the matron decides she wants to get rid of them, they fake their own adoption and flee.
Puffin acquired world English rights and rights director Zosia Knopp sold North American rights to Kendra Levine at Viking Children’s Books (part of Penguin Random House USA) on the eve of the Bologna Book Fair.
“Writing like Hana's is a rare find,” said Levine. “She has an incredible ability to weave a world that feels as timeless as a Hans Christian Andersen story yet hums with relevance to the present day. We are delighted to welcome her to the Viking list, where I hope she will remain in the U.S. for many books and years to come.”
Tooke is represented by Jenny Savill at Andrew Nurnberg Associates, who has sold the book to Rizzoli in Italy, Pocket Jeunesse in France, Urano in Spain and Kagge in Norway. DTV Junior acquired the book at auction in Germany.
Puffin will publish The Unadoptables in hardback in Spring 2020.