Though the official publication date of the children's picture book, Ciao, Sandro!, that I wrote and Luciano Lozano illustrated is 8 June 2021, I recently received 15 advance copies, of which you can see some examples above and below in what I suppose might be called their "native habitat."
During non-pandemic times, such advance copies would be among the titles displayed at the Abrams Publishing booth at the annual Bologna Children's Book Fair, the most important such fair for the children's publishing industry, attracting over 1,400 exhibitors and around 30,000 visitors from around 80 countries, and typically held in March. Last year the fair was first postponed, and then canceled outright. This year its date has been pushed back from March to 14-17 June.
One need not be in the industry to attend, and along with a staggering array of titles and publishers from around the world, its exhibitions of the original artwork of illustrators from every corner of the globe would merit a visit all on their own.
I spent a full day at the 2019 edition of the fair, and look forward to doing so again in 2021. In terms of scale, it's rather like the Venice Biennale of the children's book publishing world, with as many things to see and almost as much ground to cover as the Biennale's Arsenale setting.
You can pre-order Ciao, Sandro! now if you'd like by hovering your mouse over the word "PRE-ORDER" on the Abrams Books for Young Readers site and then clicking on one of the choices that appear.
Or, more directly, you can pre-order it now if you're in the United States by clicking here.
If you live in the UK the direct link is here.
(And both of the above sites benefit independent bookstores rather than monopolistic chains.)
|The opening two-page spread of the book (a few other pages can be found at end of post)|
All of the above links are to the US English language edition. The sale and purchase of translation rights between publishers is chief among the industry business transacted at the Bologna Children's Book Fair; no foreign editions have yet been announced for Ciao, Sandro!
|The pandemic has been a terrible time for gondoliers and taxi drivers and delivery drivers (who have seen their volume plummet with the closure of hotels and restaurants) but, in the absence of water traffic, an almost edenic time for rowers.|