Bestselling Author & Award-Winning Sports Writer Mike Lupica to Publish New Middle-Grade Sports Book Series with Scholastic

New York, New York (July 28, 2011)—Scholastic, the global children’s publishing, education and media company, today announced the acquisition of world rights to Game Changers, a series of hardcover novels for middle-grade readers written by prominent sports columnist Mike Lupica, to launch in May 2012. Lupica brings his expertise, signature style and New York Times bestselling success to a younger audience with an exciting series that follows reoccurring characters and spans three different sports kids love, football, basketball and baseball. The deal was negotiated by Esther Newberg from International Creative Management for Mike Lupica and Debra Dorfman, Vice President Publisher for Paperbacks, Non-fiction and Licensing, from Scholastic.


Mike Lupica has been part of the New York sports media for the past 30 years and is best-known for his weekly column, Shooting From the Lip, which runs every Sunday in the New York Daily News. He also is a frequent Panelist on ESPN’S The Sports Reporters and hosts his own program, The Mike Lupica Show, on 1050 ESPN Radio. Lupica is the author of multiple novels for teens including the New York Times bestsellers Travel Team, Heat, Miracle on 49th Street, and Summer Ball.


“My love of reading really started with the great Chip Hilton series, written by Clair Bee,” said Mike Lupica. “The books were about Chip and his buddies, and also about the things that are the most important themes of my books for young readers: Friendship and loyalty and teamwork. I've always had it in the back of my mind to write a series that would go from season to season, and now I’m lucky enough to do that for Scholastic, writing about a special kid named Ben McBain and his pals. Mostly I’m trying to do the same thing I’ve been doing since Travel Team, which means write the kind of books that I wanted to read as a boy.”


“Mike Lupica truly has his finger on the pulse of what matters to young people, particularly boys, and it comes through in his dynamic and thoughtful characters. We are thrilled to be working with Mike on a new sports series for 8-12 year-old readers, exploring friendships, family relationships, coaches and self discovery.” said Debra Dorfman.


The first book in Game Changers, the theme of which is football, will be published on May 15, 2012, to be followed by books in spring 2013 (basketball) and 2014 (baseball). In Game Changers Book #1, fifth grader Ben McBain is a great football player. He’s the jack-of-all-trades guy that can handle most positions. But what Ben wants to be is the starting quarterback and not to just back up the coach’s son. The coach’s son, Shawn, looks the part, has been groomed for the part and it’s a given that he will get the job. But despite his size and arm strength, the season will show that he isn’t the player his dad wants him to be.  


About Mike Lupica:

Mike Lupica began his newspaper career covering the New York Knicks for the New York Post at age 23. He became the youngest columnist ever at a New York paper with the New York Daily News, which he joined in 1977. For more than 30 years, Lupica has added magazines, novels, sports biographies, other non-fiction books on sports, as well as television to his professional resume. In 1987, Lupica began a 10-year run writing "The Sporting Life" column in Esquire magazine. He has published articles in other magazines, including Sport, World Tennis, Tennis, Golf Digest, Sports Illustrated, ESPN: The Magazine, Men's Journal and Parade. He has received numerous honors, including the 2003 Jim Murray Award from the National Football Foundation. This past year he was named New York Sports Columnist of the Year by the National Association of Sportswriters and Sportscasters.

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