Show Creators Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek, and Justin Paul collaborated with acclaimed author Val Emmich
New York, NY – March 19, 2018
Megan Tingley, Executive Vice President and Publisher, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, announces the acquisition of Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel, a young adult book by Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Val Emmich set to publish on October 9, 2018. Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel will expand upon the story and characters popularized by the six-time Tony Award–winning Broadway musical of the same name. The book was acquired in a highly competitive auction and will be the lead title on Little, Brown Books for Young Readers’ Fall 2018 list. The acquisition for North American rights was made by Farrin Jacobs, Editorial Director, Poppy, with William Morris Endeavor for Steven Levenson and Creative Artists Agency for Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. Levenson, Pasek, and Paul were represented by Schreck Rose Dapello Adams Berlin & Dunham LLP. Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel will simultaneously release in hardcover, audio, and ebook.
“Every so often, millions of readers of all ages can be united by a single powerful coming-of-age story. This year, that story will be Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel,” said Tingley. “We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take an enormously successful entertainment property and translate it into an intimate, portable experience that can reach well beyond Broadway. Dear Evan Hansen is not just a musical, and the novel will not be just a book; Dear Evan Hansen is a movement, and we can’t wait for everyone to join it.”
“For us, the most powerful and gratifying part of the journey of making this musical has been seeing the ways in which audiences have connected with these characters and their stories,” said Levenson, Pasek, and Paul in a joint statement. “We are thrilled that this novel will be able to bring Dear Evan Hansen to even more people, and we hope that it will continue to spark conversation.”
Dear Evan Hansen follows the title character, Evan, a high school senior suffering from anxiety who inadvertently becomes part of a family’s grieving process after their son’s suicide. It is a compelling story of grief, communities, and human needs. It also offers insight into the loneliness and emotional landscape of many overlooked teenagers, especially in the age of incessant connection to social media.
In addition to sweeping the 2017 Tony Awards, including a win for Best Musical, and winning the 2018 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album, Dear Evan Hansen has been roundly lauded by critics. The New York Times said it is “a gorgeous new musical for anyone with a beating heart.” The Washington Post calls it “one of the most remarkable shows in musical theater history.” ABC’s Nightline dubbed the show a “phenomenon,” and NBC Nightly News calls it “an anthem resonating on Broadway and beyond.” Its soundtrack landed in the Billboard top ten, the highest debut for a cast recording since 1961. The book’s publication will coincide with the launch of the national tour for the musical, visiting over fifty cities. Penguin Random House will publish the UK edition.
The authors will make their first book-industry appearance for Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel on May 31, 2018, at BookExpo; they will make their first public appearance for the book on June 3, 2018, at BookCon. Both events take place at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York, NY.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Steven Levenson is the Tony Award–winning book writer of Dear Evan Hansen. His plays include If I Forget, The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin, Core Values, The Language of Trees, and Seven Minutes in Heaven. Honors include the Obie Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, Outer Critics John Gassner Playwriting Award, Drama League Award, Drama Desk nomination, Hull-Warriner nomination, Lucille Lortel nomination, and the Helen Hayes Award. A former Artist in Residence at Ars Nova and a member of the Roundabout Leadership Council, he worked for three seasons as a writer and producer on Showtime’s Masters of Sex and is a founding member of Colt Coeur and an alumnus of MCC’s Playwrights Coalition and Ars Nova’s Play Group. His plays are published by Dramatists Play Service and Playscripts. A graduate of Brown University, he is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, Inc., and the WGA.
Benj Pasek and Justin Paul are the Tony, Oscar®, and Golden Globe–winning songwriting team behind the Broadway musicals Dear Evan Hansen (Tony Award, Drama Desk Award, Obie Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, Helen Hayes Award) and A Christmas Story: The Musical (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle award nominations). Other musicals include Dogfight (Lucille Lortel Award; Drama League, Outer Critics Circle, London Evening Standard award nominations), James and the Giant Peach, and Edges. Film projects include La La Land (Lionsgate); and Trolls (DreamWorks Animation). Recent and upcoming film projects include The Greatest Showman (20th Century Fox); Snow White (Walt Disney Pictures); Medusa (Sony Pictures Animation); and Aladdin (Walt Disney Pictures). TV credits include Smash, Sesame Street, The Flash, and Johnny and the Sprites, and FOX’s A Christmas Story Live! musical. Additional honors: Richard Rodgers Award (American Academy of Arts and Letters); ASCAP Foundation Richard Rodgers New Horizons Award; Jonathan Larson Award. Both are graduates of the University of Michigan Musical Theatre program and members of the Dramatists Guild of America, Inc.
Val Emmich is a writer, singer-songwriter, and actor who was dubbed a “Renaissance man” by the New York Post. He has had recurring roles on Vinyl and Ugly Betty as well as a memorable guest role as Liz Lemon’s coffee-boy fling, Jamie, on 30 Rock. His debut novel, The Reminders, was a Barnes & Noble Discover selection that Library Journal called “quirky, touching & addictive” and Popsugar deemed “beautiful and beguiling.”
ABOUT LITTLE, BROWN BOOKS FOR YOUNG READERS
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers is a division of Hachette Book Group, a leading trade publisher based in New York and a division of Hachette Livre (a Lagardère company), the third-largest trade and educational publisher in the world. HBG is made up of eight publishing groups: Little, Brown and Company; Little, Brown Books for Young Readers; Grand Central Publishing; Perseus Books; Orbit; Hachette Books; Hachette Nashville; and Hachette Audio. For more information, visit hbgusa.com.