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The Magic Paintbrush

Illustrated by Phoebe Zhong
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Hardcover
$17.99 US
5.81"W x 8.5"H x 0.89"D   | 13 oz | 12 per carton
On sale May 21, 2024 | 256 Pages | 978-0-593-17993-2
Age 8-12 years | Grades 3-7
Reading Level: Lexile 630L | Fountas & Pinnell W
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In this highly illustrated series launch, Amy, a Chinese American girl picks up an ancient paintbrush and unwittingly unleashes the power to make her art real—and sometimes dangerous. Perfect for fantasy readers who love Zachary Ying and the Dragon Emperor and Dragon Pearl series.

“Gorgeous and gripping, The Magic Paintbrush swoops readers off on rip-roaring fantasy adventure that unfurls like a magnificent scroll…Brimming with imagination and heart…”  Soman Chainani, author of THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD AND EVIL series

Amy has always loved art, but lately her drawings have been less than impressive. There's no passion, no personality, no...magic. Until Amy visits her Lao Lao, her grandmother, and finds an ancient paintbrush that brings anything Amy creates to life!

Now her creation Luna has taken over her bedroom and is running through the streets of Flushing, Queens. What awaits: an international adventure filled with an ancient Chinese legend, a greedy adversary and ghastly beasts!

Award-winning author Kat Zhang teams up with Eric Darnell, the writer and director of the Madagascar series and the Chief Creative Officer of Baobab Studios, to create a captivating highly-illustrated middle grade series debut about finding your own path, the power of imagination, and the strength of family.
"Inventive, playful, and bursting with action…this wildly fun and deeply inspiring book crosses oceans and reaches across generations, in order to touch our hearts." —David Henry Hwang, Tony Award Winner and 3-time Pulitzer Prize Finalist (M. Butterfly)

"Gorgeous and gripping!  Brimming with imagination and heart, The Magic Paintbrush shines promisingly as a new fantasy franchise in the making.” —Soman Chainani, author of The School for Good and Evil series
 
"Enormously fun! Amy, Luna, and company will make you believe in the power of art!" —Gene Luen Yang, author American Born Chinese
 
"A mythical, multi-generational thrill ride for the ages—and a love letter to the universal power of Art and Imagination."  —Mark Siegel, author of The 5 Worlds series
 
"An unforgettable fantasy adventure filled with humor, amazing illustrations, and the importance of never losing your creative spark."  —Ellen Oh, author of Finding Junie Kim

"An earnest, heart-warming and captivating adventure, The Magic Paintbrush is a charming romp of a tale. Sure to touch anyone with a creative soul."  —Jo Rioux, author of The Cat's Cradle series

"[A] high-stakes adventure in this stimulating tale filled with Chinese folklore....this vibrant story by Zhang and debut author Darnell details a thrilling escapade via swift storytelling and moments of humor, warmth, and growth." —Publishers Weekly

"An exciting tale of friendship, family, and embracing the magic of our imagination." Kirkus Reviews

"Readers will become invested in Amy’s enchanted adventure in this exciting and imaginative story with nail-biting passages."Booklist
Kat Zhang loves traveling to places both real and fictional--the former have better souvenirs, but the latter allow for dragons, so it's a tough pick. She is the author of the novels the Hybrid Chronicles, The Emperor's Riddle, and The Memory of Forgotten Things, and the picture books Amy Wu and the Perfect Bao and Amy Wu and the Patchwork Dragon. When not writing, spends her free time scribbling poetry, taking photographs, and climbing atop things she shouldn't. View titles by Kat Zhang
Eric Darnell is Chief Creative Officer and Co-Founder of Baobab Studios, the world's leading independent interactive animation studio. Under Eric's leadership, Baobab Studios has won 5 Emmys, 2 Annie's, and first ever SIGGRAPH Immersive Best in Show Award. Baobab's latest VR piece, Baba Yaga, made its world premiere at the 2020 Venice Film Festival.

Eric's career spans 25 years, and he is the second highest box office grossing writer and director of animated feature films, and was the director and screenwriter on all four films in the Madagascar franchise and an executive producer on The Penguins of Madagascar. Previously, Eric directed DreamWorks Animation's very first animated feature film, Antz View titles by Eric Darnell
Phoebe Zhong is a character designer, visual developmental artist, and illustrator based in Beijing. View titles by Phoebe Zhong

Photos

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About

In this highly illustrated series launch, Amy, a Chinese American girl picks up an ancient paintbrush and unwittingly unleashes the power to make her art real—and sometimes dangerous. Perfect for fantasy readers who love Zachary Ying and the Dragon Emperor and Dragon Pearl series.

“Gorgeous and gripping, The Magic Paintbrush swoops readers off on rip-roaring fantasy adventure that unfurls like a magnificent scroll…Brimming with imagination and heart…”  Soman Chainani, author of THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD AND EVIL series

Amy has always loved art, but lately her drawings have been less than impressive. There's no passion, no personality, no...magic. Until Amy visits her Lao Lao, her grandmother, and finds an ancient paintbrush that brings anything Amy creates to life!

Now her creation Luna has taken over her bedroom and is running through the streets of Flushing, Queens. What awaits: an international adventure filled with an ancient Chinese legend, a greedy adversary and ghastly beasts!

Award-winning author Kat Zhang teams up with Eric Darnell, the writer and director of the Madagascar series and the Chief Creative Officer of Baobab Studios, to create a captivating highly-illustrated middle grade series debut about finding your own path, the power of imagination, and the strength of family.

Praise

"Inventive, playful, and bursting with action…this wildly fun and deeply inspiring book crosses oceans and reaches across generations, in order to touch our hearts." —David Henry Hwang, Tony Award Winner and 3-time Pulitzer Prize Finalist (M. Butterfly)

"Gorgeous and gripping!  Brimming with imagination and heart, The Magic Paintbrush shines promisingly as a new fantasy franchise in the making.” —Soman Chainani, author of The School for Good and Evil series
 
"Enormously fun! Amy, Luna, and company will make you believe in the power of art!" —Gene Luen Yang, author American Born Chinese
 
"A mythical, multi-generational thrill ride for the ages—and a love letter to the universal power of Art and Imagination."  —Mark Siegel, author of The 5 Worlds series
 
"An unforgettable fantasy adventure filled with humor, amazing illustrations, and the importance of never losing your creative spark."  —Ellen Oh, author of Finding Junie Kim

"An earnest, heart-warming and captivating adventure, The Magic Paintbrush is a charming romp of a tale. Sure to touch anyone with a creative soul."  —Jo Rioux, author of The Cat's Cradle series

"[A] high-stakes adventure in this stimulating tale filled with Chinese folklore....this vibrant story by Zhang and debut author Darnell details a thrilling escapade via swift storytelling and moments of humor, warmth, and growth." —Publishers Weekly

"An exciting tale of friendship, family, and embracing the magic of our imagination." Kirkus Reviews

"Readers will become invested in Amy’s enchanted adventure in this exciting and imaginative story with nail-biting passages."Booklist

Author

Kat Zhang loves traveling to places both real and fictional--the former have better souvenirs, but the latter allow for dragons, so it's a tough pick. She is the author of the novels the Hybrid Chronicles, The Emperor's Riddle, and The Memory of Forgotten Things, and the picture books Amy Wu and the Perfect Bao and Amy Wu and the Patchwork Dragon. When not writing, spends her free time scribbling poetry, taking photographs, and climbing atop things she shouldn't. View titles by Kat Zhang
Eric Darnell is Chief Creative Officer and Co-Founder of Baobab Studios, the world's leading independent interactive animation studio. Under Eric's leadership, Baobab Studios has won 5 Emmys, 2 Annie's, and first ever SIGGRAPH Immersive Best in Show Award. Baobab's latest VR piece, Baba Yaga, made its world premiere at the 2020 Venice Film Festival.

Eric's career spans 25 years, and he is the second highest box office grossing writer and director of animated feature films, and was the director and screenwriter on all four films in the Madagascar franchise and an executive producer on The Penguins of Madagascar. Previously, Eric directed DreamWorks Animation's very first animated feature film, Antz View titles by Eric Darnell
Phoebe Zhong is a character designer, visual developmental artist, and illustrator based in Beijing. View titles by Phoebe Zhong