Random House Children’s Books has acquired U.S. Rights to Richard Scarry’s THE BEST LOWLY WORM BOOK EVER, a newly discovered, previously unpublished picture book.
Richard Scarry is one of the world’s best-loved children’s authors ever! Generations of children all over the world have grown up spending hours poring over Richard Scarry’s oversize books filled with the colorful details of their lives. No other illustrator has shown such a lively interest in the words and concepts of early childhood. Born in 1919, Richard Scarry was raised and educated in Boston, Massachusetts. After five years of drawing maps and designing graphics for the U.S. Army, he moved to New York to pursue a career in commercial art. But after showing his portfolio to one of the original editors at Golden Books, he found the perfect home for his children’s books. In the extraordinary career that followed, Richard Scarry illustrated well over 100 books, many of which have never been out of print.
This acquisition coincides with the launch of Random House Children’s Books rebranding program, which begins with the re-release of four classic Richard Scarry titles with a brand-new cover design. Kicking off the program is Richard Scarry’s Best Word Book Ever, celebrating its 50th year in print. With over 4.5 million copies in domestic sales, every oversized spread in this Scarry classic has hundreds of things for children to look at, point to, and identify. Additional titles on sale today are Mr. Paint Pig’s ABC’s, Richard Scarry’s Best Little Board Book Ever, and Richard Scarry’s Busy, Busy, Town!
“Parents and children have delighted in my father’s fun library for well over 50 years now,” says Huck Scarry. “This fresh look to the books should ensure that the love for his adorable characters will surely thrive for a whole new generation.”
The newly discovered and acquired picture book, THE BEST LOWLY WORM BOOK EVER, will be published in August 2014 and will be a welcome addition to the library of Scarry books published by Random House Children’s Books. The manuscript was discovered by Scarry’s son, Richard “Huck” Scarry, in his father’s studio. It is thought to date from around 1990 (Richard died in 1994). Written and sketched by Richard Scarry with illustrations completed by his son, the book centers on one of the most beloved Busytown characters: Lowly Worm.
“With over 300 million books sold worldwide and his books translated into dozens of languages, Richard Scarry is a household name,” says Loehr. “We are thrilled to be working with his son, Huck Scarry, to bring THE BEST LOWLY WORM BOOK EVER to fans old and new.”
Continuing in the Richard Scarry tradition of introducing the words and concepts of early childhood, in THE BEST LOWLY WORM BOOK EVER, Lowly takes readers through a typical busy day: going to school, helping on the farm, learning good manners, and traveling in some of his amazing vehicles. Children can also search for him in a fun “Where’s Lowly?” section and join in as he counts to 20. As with the classic Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things that Go (celebrating 40 years in print in 2014), readers can find Goldbug on every double-page spread.
Upcoming Scarry anniversaries include I Am a Bunny (1963, 50th anniversary), Chipmunk’s ABC (1963, 50th anniversary), The Gingerbread Man (1953, 60th anniversary), Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things that Go (1964, 40th anniversary), and Richard Scarry’s Best Mother Goose Book Ever (1964, 50th anniversary). The anniversaries celebrated over the coming years are further evidence of what a prolific and beloved author Richard Scarry was and continues to be.
Random House & Golden Books for Young Readers Editorial Director Heidi Kilgras will edit the book.