Candlewick Press is one of the fastest-growing children’s book publishers in the United States.
Established in 1991, they are a progressive and creative company, with a steadfast commitment to the best, which is due in part to their rare independence–being 100 percent employee-owned gives them the freedom to publish only the books they believe in. Their reputation for excellence in creating beautiful, high-quality children’s books is accomplished through a staff of dedicated, focused, and energetic individuals who enjoy an innovative, team-oriented work environment. Two decades and more than 2,000 awards and accolades later, they are as committed as ever to independent thinking and primed for a future that looks brighter than ever.
Lighting the Candle
When a young Englishman named Sebastian Walker set out to publish the very best books for children in 1978, he launched his company in the spare bedroom of his London home and convinced a team of brilliant and ambitious people to join him. The company’s unique message was clear: books and their creators were the stars of Walker Books. His rare commitment, support, and generosity went on to infuse Candlewick Press, founded in Massachusetts in 1991, along with Walker Books Australia. Today, Sebastian Walker’s legacy flourishes on three continents. Candlewick Press is part of a passionate global publishing enterprise with infinite horizons.
Fanning the Flame: Candlewick Press Today
Candlewick Press opened with a mere six employees. Today, their staff numbers nearly one hundred and they’ve published more than 3,000 remarkable children’s books, including the classic picture books Can’t You Sleep, Little Bear? by Martin Waddell, illustrated by Barbara Firth, and Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney, illustrated by Anita Jeram. Their storied picture-book list remains rock solid, as evidenced by the New York Times bestseller I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen, the very definition of a classic-in-the-making.
They’ve created Brand New Readers for those just beginning to read and launched Candlewick Sparks for those striving to master the skill. They’ve dipped into the great canon of children’s literature and issued the fresh and jubilant My Very First Mother Goose, edited by Iona Opie and illustrated by Rosemary Wells, along with stunning graphic interpretations of Beowulf, Shakespeare’s works, and other classics.
Candlewick has greatly expanded their list of extraordinary middle-grade and young adult titles, among them the National Book Award winner The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume One: The Pox Party by M. T. Anderson and the Newbery Medal winners The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo and Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village by Laura Amy Schlitz. Popular series such as Judy Moody, Mercy Watson, Emily Windsnap, and Clarice Bean keep younger readers laughing, while Chaos Walking, Klaatu Diskos, and Angel Burn provoke and challenge young adults.
Their logos even have a story. The original Big Bear, spiriting a candle through the dark, and the Candlewick C-flame, which now highlights their books for older readers and also acts to remind them that their authors and illustrators are truly the best and brightest in the business.
Feeding the Fire: What about Tomorrow?
E-readers, tablets, and other handheld digital or electronic devices deliver content to readers and consumers with a touch of a button. Perhaps not since Gutenberg’s invention of movable type has the world of publishing undergone such seismic change. Keeping pace with those changes is Candlewick Press, proving that ourtheir relatively small size enables us to adapt to evolutions in the industry nimbly and swiftly. They are one of the few publishers working with its digital content delivery partners to attend to critical typographic, composition, and design elements as a book makes the transition from one handheld device (the book!) to another. Their electronic publishing program is robust, with more than 250 titles now available in electronic format.
Candlewick Press arrived on the scene with some of the highest-quality picture books anywhere. And in the years since then, their offerings have grown to encompass all ages, from board books to e-books, high-end novelty to cutting-edge fiction. What hasn’t changed is Candlewick’s goal of excellence, their commitment to the authors and illustrators who create our books and the readers who love them.
Some of the wonderful diversity children’s books offered by Candlewick include:
by Eve Bunting and illustrated by Lauren Castillo
Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer, Spirit of the Civil Rights Movement
by Carole Boston Weatherford and illustrated by Ekua Holmes
Mango, Abuela and Me
by Meg Medina and illustrated by Angela Dominguez
Happy in Our Skin
by Fran Manushkin and illustrated by Lauren Tobia
Jump Back Paul: The Life and Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar
by Sally Derby and illustrated by Sean Qualls
Heather Has Two Mommies
by Leslea Newman and illustrated by Laura Cornell
Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco
by Judith Robbins Rose
The Princess in Black and the Perfect Princess Party
by Dean and Shannon Hale
illustrated by LeUyen Pham
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