Gender Queer Maia Kobabe's New Kids Graphic Novel, Saachi's Stories
Maia Kobabe is the creator of the most-banned graphic novel in America – and one of its best-selling – Gender Queer: A Memoir. That book, initially published in 2019, was not initially intended for kids, but won awards for its appeal to a younger audience. However, the reaction from some parents – and politicians – to a book being read by children that they find objectionable, has led to repeated bans, challenges, legal challenges of obscenity and political campaigns against a book, and many other books that tackle racial issues, sexual orientation or gender identity in schools, libraries and bookstores. Bleeding Cool has covered these stories repeatedly over the last two years.
Gender Queer has been recognised as a very important graphic novel when it comes to people talking about their own gender identity, and Maia Kobabe has talked about how honoured e has been to have people, especially younger people, find that in eir work. But also that Kobabe was working on another graphic novel tackling such themes, specifically written for a younger audience.
And that is what has now been announced. Scholastic has paid a six-figure sum in an auction for the world publishing rights to Saachi's Stories, a new middle-grade graphic novel written by Maia Kobaba and drawn by Lucky Srikumar for the Scholastic Graphic imprint, to be edited by David Leviathan. Saachi's Stories is a "coming-of-age middle-grade graphic novel follows aspiring author Saachi, who struggles to navigate changing social dynamics and her evolving identity, as her friends start coupling up and everybody else seems to fit neatly into a boy/girl binary."
Scholastic Graphix will publish Saachi's Stories in the spring of 2023. Emily Mitchell at Wernick & Pratt represented both Maia Kobabe and Lucky Srikumar in the deal.