The illustrator of bestselling children’s books by former President Barack Obama, Madonna and poet Amanda Gorman has a six-figure deal with a Macmillan imprint for two of his own projects. Loren Long’s first book under his new contract is “The Yellow Bus,” scheduled for June 2024.
“Noticing a rusted and abandoned school bus sitting in a field with goats climbing in and out of it got me thinking about purpose and the passage of time. I thought `Surely that yellow bus started it’s life in a grand fashion, bright and shiny, carrying children from one important place to another,”’ Long said in a statement issued Monday through Roaring Brook Press.
“The Yellow Bus resulted from me contemplating and imagining what the life of that old bus might have been. And the feeling that comes from doing things for other people,” he said.
Besides working on Obama’s “Of Thee I Sing,” Madonna’s “Mr. Peabody’s Apples” and Gorman’s “Change Sings,” Long has written and illustrated the popular series about Otis the tractor, including “Otis and the Kittens,” “Otis and the Scarecrow” and “Otis and the Tornado.” Apple TV is planning an animated series based on the Otis books.