We’re thrilled to announce Simon & Schuster Children’s has snapped up two LGBTQ+ middle-grade titles from debut author and celebrity journalist Benjamin Dean in a speedy pre-empt conducted via Zoom.

Ali Dougal, Publishing Director, and Lucy Rogers, Senior Commissioning Editor, bought UK & Commonwealth rights in a two-book deal with the first book, Me, My Dad and the End of the Rainbow, to be published in February 2021 with illustrations by rising star Sandhya Prabhat.

My name’s Archie Albright, and I know two things for certain: 

My mum and dad kind of hate each other, and they’re not doing a great job of pretending that they don’t anymore.

They’re both keeping a secret from me, but I can’t figure out what.

Dad’s acting weird, Mum’s acting hysterical, and I’m in the middle wondering how I can fix this mess.

And that’s when I found the flyer, the one that fell out of Dad’s pocket and gave me this whole idea in the first place.

If what I’ve seen is anything to go by, then the answer might just be at the end of the rainbow, an adventure away.

With the help of my best friends, Bell and Seb (who’s reluctant to come at all, but that’s a whole other story), we’re going to figure out this secret once and for all, even if we have to break a few rules to do it.

Me, My Dad and the End of the Rainbow is a joyful, spirited love letter to family, friendship and love itself, in all forms.

Lucy Rogers, Senior Commissioning Editor, said, ‘This is a hugely special, utter gem of a book; a rainbow-coloured, joy-filled celebration of love in all its forms and people with all their unique differences. We feel incredibly lucky to be publishing Benjamin’s debut and to be welcoming such an exciting new talent to the list.’

Rachel Denwood, Managing Director at S&S Children’s UK, added, ‘It is impossible not to be hyperbolic about Benjamin Dean and his potential to become a major new star of children’s fiction. In the eyes of his S&S team he already is, having written one of the most life-affirming and gorgeous debuts we’ve read for years. Me, My Dad and the End of the Rainbow will be a life-changing read for many young people and I am hugely grateful to Benjamin, and to Alice, for putting their trust in us to publish what will surely be one of the must-reads of 2021.’

Huge congratulations, Benjamin! We can’t wait for readers to discover Archie’s story.