FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Consortium to Distribute Blue Apple Books in United States and Canada
Minneapolis, MN (February 18, 2014)—Consortium Book Sales & Distribution (Consortium), exclusive distributor of leading independent publishers and a member of the Perseus Books Group, is pleased to announce that it will distribute Blue Apple Books in the United States and Canada starting June 1, 2014. Blue Apple Books is a children’s publisher with offices in Maplewood, New Jersey.
Launched in 2003, Blue Apple Books has been cited by Publishers Weekly as one of the country’s fastest-growing small presses. Elizabeth Bird, New York Public Library’s Youth Materials Collections Specialist, describes the press as a “small, gutsy, rather lovely little publisher.”
“We are thrilled to have Blue Apple Books join our fold,” says David Steinberger, CEO of the Perseus Books Group. “Harriet Ziefert’s passion for bringing children books they not only need, but will also enjoy is unsurpassed. She’s a treasure in the world of children’s publishing and the independent publishing community. We’re honored to have her join the Consortium family.”
“The Blue Apple team is deeply committed to producing smart, well-crafted books that work on multiple levels to address both the intellectual and emotional needs of children,” affirms founder and publisher Ziefert. “ As such, we have made an excellent choice to promote our future growth. The Consortium staff are creative thinkers and deep lovers of books, dedicated to serving their markets and dedicated to finding new ones.”
Blue Apple publishes 40 titles per year for children under the age of 10. High-profile titles include New York Times Bestseller Broadway Barks by Bernadette Peters, ALA Notable selection Do You Know Which Ones Will Grow? by Susan Shea and Tom Slaughter, Jessie Hartland’s How the Meteorite Got to the Museum series, books by DwellStudio, and Deborah Zemke’s popular Doodles for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner placemat series, which boasts over 700,000 copies sold.
Kid-centered science topics are explored in the company’s "Think About" and "You Can’t…" non-fiction series. Explains Ziefert: “The essence of these books is to ignite kid’s curiosity about this essential question: What distinguishes human beings from all other animals? We help kids explore this fascinating line of inquiry via poetry, facts, and off-the-page activities.”
Emerging independent readers will be charmed by the press’s just-launched "Jump-Into-Chapters" line, which benefits from Ziefert’s extensive, pioneering expertise in helping read-to kids become lifelong all-by-myself readers.
Ziefert is also proud to have more than a dozen books on Blue Apple’s backlist by Caldecott Medal winner Simms Taback, with whom she created the Caldecott-honor title The Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly (Viking Children’s Books).
In the digital realm, the press forged a recent partnership with South Korean publisher CJ Educations ,which created over 40 apps drawn from new and backlist Blue Apple titles. CJ’s app for Blue Apple’s Round Like a Ball was named a “Best App for Young Brains” by Appysmart.com.
Sharing Ziefert’s conviction that “books for kids should be as beautiful as those for adults” is Blue Apple Associate Publisher/Creative Director, Elliot Kreloff. “Every book is a positive expression of my collaboration with the artist,” says Kreloff. Out-of-the-box art direction and swift, creative feedback for works-in-progress have drawn a stellar slate of new and established artistic talent to Blue Apple. Recently, over 30 artists celebrated Blue Apple’s 10th Anniversary by providing their own original versions of the company’s logo.
Many Blue Apple Books got their start as a piece of art that touched Ziefert’s or Kreloff’s imaginations. “When I am inspired by somebody’s art, I can easily find my way into a story,” says Ziefert, who writes several books per season while Kreloff, is the illustrator and designer of the award-winning SAMi board book and product line.
How and where are Blue Apple Books grown? A large, open studio in Maplewood, New Jersey promotes collaboration between the creatively-committed editorial, design, and production team. As in their books, nothing in the space is standard fare. Original art adorns the walls, office surfaces display one-of-a-kind toys, puppets, folk art, pottery, and sculpture. A 15-foot-long wooden table resembling an alligator greets visitors with a toothy grin. Perhaps most telling is a large piece of art from Tom Slaughter in which cut-paper lettering, against a bright blue background proclaims: “YES WE CAN!”
As bigger and bigger houses dominate children’s publishing, how does one survive in the face of corporate giants, who have big staffs and budgets to match? Per Ziefert, Blue Apple answers the challenge by employing these guiding maxims:
1) Be nimble, be quick.
2) Stay small. Think big.
3) Go where the big guys won’t tread.
4) Don’t follow trends. (They will be over by the time you get there.)
5) Be excited and brave.
6) Support and develop new talent.
7) Move on when you make a mistake
8) Stay true and stay fresh
9) Never lose your sense of humor
10) Begin, end, and never-ever lose sight of the kid
“We are excited to work with such an innovative and forward-thinking publisher,” concludes Julie Schaper, President and COO of Consortium. “Blue Apple will enrich our children’s publishing program and embody a relationship that Consortium loves to foster, that of the boldly independent, creative publisher working in partnership with us to bring forth truly special books.”
Consortium Book Sales & Distribution, home to a community of award-winning publishers, believes in the power of independent voices. We strive to share new ideas—some that may otherwise not be discovered—with the world.
Consortium—Where Independent Publishers Live.
Consortium grew out of a small book wholesaling cooperative in 1985 to become a full-service distributor, quickly earning a reputation as an advocate for independent publishers. Consortium now represents more than one hundred independent publishers from the United States, Canada, Europe, India, and Australia, enabling them to successfully reach the trade, library, and academic markets for their books. Consortium understands the importance of ideas, and our goal as a distributor is to introduce those ideas—some that may otherwise not be heard—to the widest possible audience. For more information, visit www.cbsd.com.
About The Perseus Books Group
The Perseus Books Group is an independent company committed to enabling independent book publishers to reach their potential, whether those publishers are Perseus-owned, joint ventures, or owned by third parties. Perseus publishing imprints include Avalon Travel, Basic Books, Basic Civitas, Da Capo Press, Da Capo Lifelong Books, PublicAffairs, Running Press, Seal Press, and Westview Press, as well as partnerships with The Daily Beast, The Nation Institute, and The Weinstein Company. Through Consortium Book Sales & Distribution, Perseus Distribution, Publishers Group West, and Legato Publishers Group, as well as through its Constellation digital service offering which also supports Argo Navis Author Services and Faber Factory Powered by Constellation, The Perseus Books Group is the leading provider of sales, marketing, distribution, and digital services, serving four hundred independent publishers. For more information, visit our websites at www.perseusbooks.com, www.constellationdigital.com.