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HarperCollins to Launch Comics and Graphic Novel Line in 2020

HarperAlley will be headed up by First Second Books veteran Andrew Arnold.
Noelle Stevenson/HarperCollins
HarperAlley will be headed up by First Second Books veteran Andrew Arnold.

Ahead of next week’s San Diego Comic-Con, Harper Collins has announced the creation of a new graphic novel imprint as part of its Harper Collins Children’s Books division, to be called HarperAlley.

The imprint is intended to publish in the region of 30 books annually, and has already started to acquire both original titles and foreign-language publications to bring to an American audience, according to Andrew Arnold, its editorial director.

Although part of the Children’s Books division, Arnold told Publishers Weekly that HarperAlley will be aimed at “readers of all ages,” explaining that the imprint is “looking to publish books that readers of all ages can enjoy, from the youngest readers to teens and adults. We believe that a good story is a story that any reader can relate to. That’s what we mean when we say ‘readers of all ages.’”

Arnold comes to HarperAlley from Macmillan’s First Second Books, where he worked as art director and acquiring editor; creators he worked with during his time with the publisher include Hope Larson, Gene Luen Yang and Eisner Award winner Tillie Walden. The Macmillan imprint, which launched in 2006, has become an important incubator for comic book publishing executives; last year, former associate director Gina Gagliano left the imprint to head up Random House’s upcoming Random House Graphic line.

“Witnessing the rise of the graphic novel over the past 15 years has been amazing,” Arnold said about his career to date. “Cartoonists continue to inspire, challenge, and push the form in unexpected directions. I look forward to collaborating with creators and with the talented team at HarperCollins to publish more graphic novels for all kinds of readers, everywhere.”

No titles or creators have been named for HarperAlley yet, but Arnold said that the intent is to expand upon existing graphic novel and comic titles in the HarperCollins catalog, which include Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics series and the award-winning Nimona, by Noelle Stevenson (cover above).

Initial titles from the imprint will launch Fall 2020.

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