John Grisham, number 1 international bestselling author, to pen new children’s series for Penguin Young Readers Group

Grisham to write first-ever children’s book series, the first of which will be Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer, to publish May 25, 2010

New York, NY – February 25, 2010 – John Grisham, #1 international bestselling author, will be writing his first-ever children’s books series for Penguin Young Readers Group, it was announced today by Don Weisberg, President of Penguin Young Readers Group. The first two novels in the series will be edited by Julie Strauss-Gabel, Associate Publisher of Dutton Children’s Books, who, with Mr. Weisberg, acquired the North American hardcover and paperback rights from Grisham’s longtime agent David Gernert. 

The two novels in this series will be aimed at readers ages 8-12, The first book in the series, THEODORE BOONE: Kid Lawyer, is scheduled for publication on May 25, 2010, and will follow the adventures of a 13-year-old, amateur attorney who unwittingly becomes involved in a high-profile murder trial.  The second book in the series, also featuring Theo, is due to be published in 2011.

David Shanks, CEO of Penguin Group (USA), said, “It’s an honor to welcome John Grisham to Penguin Group (USA)’s family of award-winning, bestselling authors. We are excited to be publishing him and we’re proud to be unveiling his first children’s series.”

Don Weisberg commented, “We are looking forward to introducing John Grisham to a whole new generation of young readers. Theodore Boone delivers Grisham’s trademark storytelling, perfectly spun for a younger audience. Kids are going to love it.”

John Grisham is recognized as the world’s most popular storyteller, with over 250 million books in print worldwide, which have been translated into 29 languages.

Note to the press

Penguin Young Readers Group includes such preeminent imprints as Dial Books, Dutton, Grosset & Dunlap, Philomel, Puffin, Speak, Firebird, G. P. Putnam’s Sons, Viking, and Frederick Warne. These imprints are home to such award-winning, New York Times- bestselling authors as Laurie Halse Anderson, Jay Asher, Judy Blume, Jan Brett, Eric Carle, Roald Dahl, Tomie dePaola, Sarah Dessen, John Green, Eric Hill, Anthony Horowitz, Brian Jacques, Mike Lupica, Richard Peck, Patricia Polacco, and dozens of other popular authors.

Penguin Young Readers Group is also the proud publisher of perennial brand franchises such as The Little Engine That Could, the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys series, Peter Rabbit, Spot, the Classic Winnie the Pooh, the Very Hungry Caterpillar, Strega Nona, Madeline, Mad Libs, Alex Rider, the Rangers Apprentice, Skippyjon Jones, Flower Fairies, and Pippi Longstocking, among many others.

Dutton Children's Books is one of the oldest continually operating children's book publishers in the United States. Established more than 150 years ago, the imprint publishes approximately 60 hardcover titles each year, for children from preschool through high school. Dutton is home to such perennial classics as A. A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh, Judy Blume’s Fudge novels, Paul O. Zelinsky’s The Wheels on the Bus, Ellen Raskin’s The Westing Game, and Jean Craighead George’s My Side of the Mountain. Recent hits include the Printz Award-winning Looking for Alaska by John Green and the New York Times Bestselling Skippyjon Jones picture books by Judy Schachner.

Penguin Group (USA) Inc. is the U.S. member of the internationally renowned Penguin Group.  Penguin Group (USA) is one of the leading U.S. adult and children's trade book publishers, owning a wide range of imprints and trademarks, including Viking, G. P. Putnam’s Sons, The Penguin Press, Riverhead Books, Dutton, Penguin Books, Berkley Books, Gotham Books, Portfolio, New American Library, Plume, Tarcher, Philomel, Grosset & Dunlap, Puffin, and Frederick Warne, among others. The Penguin Group ( is part of Pearson plc, the international media company. 

Media contact

Shanta Newlin
Director of Publicity
Penguin Young Readers Group
212.414.3630 /