Scholastic inks book deal with Striker Entertainment and UK-based kid artist “The Doodle Boy”
Scholastic, the global children’s publishing, education, and media company, announced that Joe Whale, 10-year-old doodle artist based in the UK, will illustrate a chapter book series for kids. The worldwide deal brokered by Striker Entertainment grants Scholastic the rights to design and produce a wide range of English language formats including chapter books, storybooks, sticker story books, novelty, activity books, eBooks, and audio books. The first chapter book is publishing in Fall 2021.
Joe Whale, a.k.a. “The Doodle Boy”, went viral in 2019 after he was commissioned by a local restaurant to decorate an eight-foot wall with his signature black and white drawings. Since then, he has been interviewed by Insider and appeared on Ellen DeGeneres’s TV show Little Big Shots, hosted by Melissa McCarthy, where he designed the set backdrop and created custom name illustrations for all of the kid guests. Joe has been commissioned by restaurants and businesses including The White Elephant Hotel in Palm Beach to fill their walls with his lively doodles.
Joe Whale said: “I’m really, REALLY, excited to be working with Scholastic! It will be AMAZING to see my books on the shelves. My top thing to do was my own book and it’s ACTUALLY REAL!!! Can’t wait to get going, it is going to be an amazing experience working alongside Eric! It will be super fun and my doodles think so too!”
Striker Entertainment’s Russell Binder said: “From the moment we were introduced to Joe and his talent, we knew there was something uniquely special about this young man and burgeoning young artist. From day one he’s communicated that his wish was to do a book, make an animated series, and make clothing all featuring his art and characters. We have been able to successfully check two of those boxes, one with the most prestigious children’s publisher no less, and are close on the third.”
The highly-illustrated chapter books will be written for readers ages 6–8, and each title explores themes of imagination and creativity. Book one takes place deep within the walk-in pantry at Belching Walrus Elementary, where fruits, veggies, cookies, chicken fingers, and other lunchroom staples live in harmony. When the Supplies from the Principal’s office sneakily take over the pantry, young heroes Slice, Scoop, and Totz must venture out into the school halls to foil Baron von Lineal and the Supplies’ dastardly plans.
Debra Dorfman, Vice President and Publisher, Global Licensing, Brands and Media at Scholastic said: “We are so excited to team up with Joe to create a fun and imaginative chapter book series about food monsters! Joe’s doodles are crazy fun and we can’t wait to create a line with activity books and interactive journals that we know kids will love.”
Scholastic author Eric Luper has been hired to write the chapter book series with Joe. Eric has written books for kids of all ages, including the Key Hunters series. He loves excitement and is always looking for his next adventure, from exploring tunnels under Paris and Istanbul, to escaping hungry crocodiles in Costa Rica. Eric has a flair for original, knee-slapping stories that keep kids laughing and asking for more.