This Is Not a Valentine + An Emily Arrow Song!


by me, illustrated by Lucy Ruth Cummins (Chronicle Books, 2017)

(Use code VALENTINE for 30% off right now at Chronicle!)

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This post is not a valentine, but I’m here to wish you the happiest of them. Thank you for celebrating this book so well with us!

And here’s an extra special treat:

Emily! The sweetest gift.

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I’ve got a bit more of a Valentine roundup in this month’s newsletter, so click here to subscribe if you’d like.


Little Red Sled: by Emily Arrow and Zoey Abbott Wagner


There’s this songwriter, Emily Arrow. And there’s this illustrator, Zoey Abbott Wagner. And then there’s the internet, where these two collaborators met. Art showed up first, and the story followed, and they made this thing, this beautiful thing.

Music. A song. A story. A friendship, really.

Here’s what Emily had to say about it:

This is my debut video that is an original song and story! After seeing an illustration posted by one of my favorite up-and-coming illustrators, Zoey Abbot Wagner, a story concept flooded over me. With my ukulele in hand, I started imagining myself going out in the snow like the character in her sketch….but only wanting to deal with winter if I could have lots of books around! I shared the song with Zoey and she made the most beautiful, creative illustrations for our video project. We’ve had so much fun, we’re going to create a series of videos called “the Arrow of Seasons.” The characters will have season-y names and the stories will celebrate my two favorite things: music and literature. 

We love those things, right?


Sometimes in picture books, this kind of collaboration is unusual. An in picture books, stories take years from idea to the printed page. But still, here’s one artist crafting half of a perfect thing, leaving room for the other artist’s half of the perfect thing.

Together, it sings. (Here, literally, but you know what I mean.)

I hope you’ll enjoy this duo as much as I have. Books and pictures…plus songs? Okay, yes.


Here’s Emily Arrow and Zoey Abbott Wagner’s Little Red Sled:

And if you are a Los Angeles local, don’t miss Emily Arrow’s debut album release party at Once Upon a Time, on February 20th at 10:30 am. I’ll be there!

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