In a seven-figure, four-book deal, Amulet Books' Susan Van Metre took world English rights to a new middle-grade series called The Terrible Two by Mac Barnett and Jory John. The series, which Amulet won in a seven-publisher auction, follows two rival pranksters and marks the first time these two children's authors have worked together.
Barnett, who wrote the 2012 picture book Extra Yarn (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray) that won a Caldecott Honor for illustrator Jon Klassen, is a longtime friend of John, who is best known for his humorous 2010 book All My Friends Are Dead (Chronicle). The new series, which will launch in 2015, will feature illustrations by Kevin Cornell (Count the Monkeys, published by Disney-Hyperion and also written by Barnett). Speaking further to the premise, Abrams said The Terrible Two will follow "a prank war of Homeric proportions" when a new boy in town attempts to establish himself as the top prankster at the local school.
Rights to the series, which Writers House agent Steven Malk represents, have been sold in Italian, Norwegian, Swedish and Dutch.