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Mildred D. Taylor's 'Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry' Celebrates 40th Anniversary in 2016

New York, NY — Penguin Young Readers is thrilled to announce a 40th anniversary edition of the Newbery Award-winning ROLL OF THUNDER, HEAR MY CRY by Mildred D. Taylor. With more than 6.5 million copies in print, this masterpiece will have all new covers from Caldecott Winning illustrator Kadir Nelson. The 10 book deal includes covers for Ms. Taylor’s entire backlist and a future hardcover due from Dial Books for Young Readers in 2017. World rights, all languages were negotiated by Eileen Kreit, publisher of Puffin, and Steven Malk of Writers House. The hardcover anniversary rejacketed edition will publish in January 2016 with the complete backlist to follow in paperback in April.

Set in Mississippi at the height of the Depression, this is the story of one family’s struggle to maintain their integrity, pride, and independence in the face of racism and social injustice. It is also the story of Cassie Logan, an independent girl who discovers over the course of an important year why having land of their own is so crucial to the Logan family, even as she learns to draw strength from her own sense of dignity and self-respect.

Ms. Taylor says, “ROLL OF THUNDER, HEAR MY CRY was created from a story my father and my uncle told me while we sat at the dining room table. From the time I was a child, I heard family stories and family history. I have woven all those stories and all that history into ten books, including the book I am now writing, LOGAN, the concluding book of the Logan family saga. I consider my books a legacy to my family, and I believe all those who shared the stories and who lived the history would be as proud as I of the 40th anniversary of ROLL OF THUNDER, HEAR MY CRY, a book begun with a story told around the dining room table.”

“I’m so thrilled to have the opportunity to create new covers for this powerful series by Mildred Taylor,” says Kadir Nelson. “The ROLL OF THUNDER series resonates so deeply with me and I’m very proud to help introduce this saga to a new generation of readers.”

Don Weisberg, President of Penguin Young Readers, said, “ROLL OF THUNDER, HEAR MY CRY has become a part of our country’s literary history, enjoyed by generations of readers. It’s a privilege to be part of this publishing legacy, and we’re excited to celebrate the upcoming anniversary and new addition to the Logan family saga.”

ROLL OF THUNDER, HEAR MY CRY was first published in January 1976, and was followed by eight additional novels to form the Logan family saga. These titles – Let the Circle be Unbroken,The Road to Memphis, Mississippi Bridge, Song of the Trees, The Friendship, The Land, The Well, The Gold Cadillac – will be rejacketed with original art by Kadir Nelson for release in April 2016. The final book in the Logan family saga will be released by Dial Books for Young Readers in 2017.

Mildred D. Taylor is the author of nine books including The Road to MemphisLet the Circle Be UnbrokenThe Land, The Well and Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry. Her books have won numerous awards, among them a Newbery Medal and Germany’s Buxtehude Bulle Award (both for Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry), four Coretta Scott King Awards, and a Boston Globe—Horn Book Award. Her book The Land was awarded the L.A. Times Book Prize and the PEN Award for Children’s Literature. In 2003, Ms. Taylor was named the First Laureate of the NSK Neustadt Prize for Children’s Literature. In 2004, Mississippi celebrated a Mildred D. Taylor Day, and Mildred Taylor returned to her roots to address several hundred school children and adults at The University of Mississippi.

Mildred Taylor was born in Jackson, Mississippi, and grew up in Toledo, Ohio. After graduating from the University of Toledo, she served in the Peace Corps in Ethiopia for two years and then spent the next year traveling throughout the United States, working and recruiting for the Peace Corps. At the University of Colorado’s School of Journalism, she helped created a Black Studies program and taught in the program for two years. Ms. Taylor has worked as a proofreader-editor and as program coordinator for an international house and a community free school. She now devotes her time to her family, writing, and what she terms “the family ranch” in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.

Kadir Nelson is a two-time Caldecott Honor Award recipient. He has received an NAACP Image Award, a CASEY Award, the 2009 and 2014 Coretta Scott King Author Award, and the 2009 Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award. Among Mr. Nelson’s other awards are gold and silver medals from the Society of Illustrators. His work has appeared in The New York TimesSports Illustrated, and The New Yorker. He lives in Los Angeles.

Penguin Random House (http://global.penguinrandomhouse.com/) is the world’s most global trade book publisher. It was formed on July 1, 2013, upon the completion of an agreement between Bertelsmann and Pearson to merge their respective trade publishing companies, Random House and Penguin, with the parent companies owning 53% and 47%, respectively.  Penguin Random House comprises the adult and children’s fiction and nonfiction print and digital trade book publishing businesses of Penguin and Random House in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India and South Africa, and Penguin’s trade publishing activity in Asia and Brazil; DK worldwide; and Penguin Random House Grupo Editorial’s Spanish-language companies in Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Colombia, and Chile. Penguin Random House employs more than 10,000 people globally across almost 250 editorially and creatively independent imprints and publishing houses that collectively publish more than 15,000 new titles annually. Its publishing lists include more than 70 Nobel Prize laureates and hundreds of the world’s most widely read authors.

The Logan Family Saga, by Mildred D. Taylor:

ROLL OF THUNDER, HEAR MY CRY 40th Anniversary Edition

On sale: January 5, 2016

(9781101993880; Dial; Hardcover; $18.99; Ages 8 – 12)

ROLL OF THUNDER, HEAR MY CRY 40th Anniversary Edition

On sale: January 5, 2016

(9780140384512; Puffin; Paperback; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)


On sale: April 12, 2016

(9781101997543; Puffin; Paperback; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)


On sale: April 12, 2016

(9781101997550; Puffin; Paperback; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)


On sale: April 12, 2016

(9780141308173; Puffin; Paperback; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)


On sale: April 12, 2016

(9780142500750; Puffin; Paperback; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)


On sale: April 12, 2016

(9780140389647; Puffin; Paperback; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)


On sale: April 12, 2016

(9781101997567; Puffin; Paperback; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)


On sale: April 12, 2016

(9780140386424; Puffin; Paperb
ack; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)


On sale: April 12, 2016

(9780140389630; Puffin; Paperback; $7.99; Ages 8 – 12)

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