The Thieving Collectors of Fine Children’s Books by Adam Perry

Hello, Adam Perry! Welcome back to Watch. Connect. Read.! The last time you stopped by was on October 6, 2018 to share The Magician of Elephant County’s book trailer. What have you been up to since our last conversation?

Adam Perry: So much! Besides working on a bunch of different book projects and going to schools for author visits, my wife and I were happy to welcome our daughter earlier this year. 

For obvious reasons, I’ve been home a lot with my family this year, and have read through the DOG MAN series many, many times with my sons. My kids are always introducing me to new books, and it’s fun to see what they’re interested in. Someday soon, I hope they ask me to read one of my books!

On that note, do you want to see the cover for THE THIEVING COLLECTORS OF FINE CHILDREN'S BOOKS?

Thank you for the update! Hello to your children! Yes, I would LOVE to see The Thieving Collectors of Fine Children's Books cover! 

Illustrator Credit: David SanAngelo
Designer Credit: Natalie Padberg Bartoo

Ohhhh! I love it! Are you up for taking us on a tour of the cover?

Adam: I’d love to!

Thank you! Do you want to start the tour in the upper left-hand corner?

Adam: If you read the premise of THE THIEVING COLLECTORS OF FINE CHILDREN'S BOOKS, you’ll see that the general idea is … complicated. Oliver Nelson is the last person who read a rare and recently destroyed book called THE TIMEKEEPER’S CHILDREN and some rich and powerful book collectors want it for their collection. The collectors’ names are Mr. and Mrs. Pribble, and they use some very cool, futuristic technology to enter the story inside Oliver’s mind and try to steal it from him, chapter by chapter.

In a way, the cover had to convey two different stories: the book, and the book within the book. I had no idea how it could do that, and I’m thrilled with how it turned out.

Going counterclockwise, at the upper left corner, you’ll see Mr. and Mrs. Pribble, using something called the Cortexia™ to steal the story of THE TIMEKEEPER’S CHILDREN. The Cortexia™ is basically a vacuum cleaner that can slurp the thoughts from inside someone’s mind.

The boy and girl running away from the Pribbles are Cora and Jack, the stars of THE TIMEKEEPER’S CHILDREN. They’re on a mission through the fantasy world of Dulum to steal various items used to build a magical that can turn back time.

Oliver is in the bottom right hand corner. He realizes the story is too important to him and teams up with Cora and Jack to help them steal the pieces and get to the end before the Pribbles can finish their terrible task.

Right above Oliver’s head you’ll see a bird, and … actually, I probably shouldn’t say any more about that bird. How did he get on the cover? Never mind. Please ignore.

Considering the title of the book within the book is THE TIMEKEEPER’S CHILDREN, you probably guessed that time is a big theme throughout the book, so the clock in the center has a very important role.

I was so impressed by what the illustrator, David SanAngelo was able to do. He completely nailed the vision I had in my head, and I love the way the swirling blue swirl from the Cortexia ™ surrounds the clock. The team at Little Bee/Yellow Jacket was wonderful to work with, and I’m so happy with how the designer, Natalie Padberg Bartoo, incorporated all the elements, especially the lettering for the title.

Wow! That was an impressive, interesting, and engaging tour. Thank you! 

Please finish the following sentence starters. 

Oliver Nelson has a terrible secret. Unfortunately, I can’t say what that is (you’ll have to read the book!), but I will tell you that he loves stories more than anything and spends most of his afternoons in the local library, curled up with a good book.

I hope The Thieving Collectors of Fine Children’s Books shows kids that reading is an act of a creation. While authors may write the story, what a reader brings to the table in their own imagination is equally important.

Story is not something that should be stolen. One of the themes of the book is that stories should be shared.

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me if I’ve ever stolen a book! And the answer is NO! Though I may have been late on my library returns a few times …

Look for The Thieving Collectors of Fine Children's Books on March 2, 2021. 

Yellow Jacket's Description: This clever, fast-paced adventure is a mix of the Story Thieves series and Ready Player One!

Oliver Nelson has a terrible secret-he's a thief.

But he only steals books from the Garden Grove Library that are old, musty, brittle, or incomplete, like his favorite book, The Timekeeper's Children. No one reads anymore, and surely no one will miss them, right? Wrong.

The Pribbles are famous inventors of the most popular toy in the world, alternate-reality goggles. They are also book collectors who are searching for The Timekeeper's Children, so the Pribbles hatch a plan. They invite Oliver, the last person to have checked it out, to their mansion and use special software from their goggles to steal the last remaining copy of the book--from inside Oliver's mind.

Now, Oliver is thrust into the middle of the story and must help the main characters steal pieces scattered around the fictional world of Dulum to build a magical clock that can turn back time before the evil sorcerer Sigil takes over. They'll encounter hideous giants, bloodsucking bats, vicious eels, a Nasty Rodent Eater, a gang of wicked children, and a strange, dark figure that follows them from chapter to chapter, all the while with the Pribbles in pursuit.

Can Oliver save Dulum before Sigil destroys everything? And will he finish The Timekeeper's Children before the Pribbles steal it from his mind?


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