cupcake (noun): a bite size confection

1. small stories with a heaping scoop of adventure
2. rainbow sprinkles
3. a sweet and salty nibble
CAKE Literary's kidlit imprint, CUPCAKE aims for smart and sophisticated children's fiction -- from chapter books to middle grade novels -- with the kind of dark whimsical storytelling associated with the classics of the genre, like The Phantom Tollbooth and Harriet the Spy. Perfect for classrooms, libraries, and even late nights under a blanket with a flashlight, our focus is on delightful and delicious reads that will have even the most reluctant readers flipping pages. And of course, like all of CAKE's projects, CUPCAKE emphasizes building organic diversity into every high concept story.


the gauntlet

The Recipe: Adventure

A steampunk Jumanji with Middle Eastern flair. Twelve-year-old Farah and her two friends get sucked into a supernatural board game. They must navigate dangerous puzzles and perilous challenges in order to beat the game. But can they outwit the game’s creator? Or will they, like the children who came before them, become trapped forever?


Meet the author: Karuna Riazi

Karuna Riazi is a born and raised New Yorker, with a loving, large extended family and the rather trying experience of being the eldest sibling in her particular clan. Besides pursuing a BA in English literature from Hofstra University, she is an online diversity advocate, blogger, and publishing intern. Karuna is fond of tea, Korean dramas, writing about tough girls forging their own paths toward their destinies, and baking new delectable treats for friends and family to relish. Her writing has been featured on The Toast, Love, InshAllah and MTV among others, and she is a contributor to the feminist anthology Here We Are: Feminism for the Real World. Find her on Twitter @KarunaRiazi
Karuni Riazi

love sugar magic: a dash of trouble

The Recipe: Magic

The sisters of the Logroño family have a big secret — they’re brujas, witches of Mexican ancestry — and have been keeping the residents of Rose Hill, Texas, well- stocked with sweet treats from their panadería, as well as problem-solving magic. But when youngest sister Leo bungles up a spell, causing her best friend’s crush to fall in love with the entire 7th grade, she must rush to fix it before her mama and tías discover it. Or she just might lose the only real amiga she’s ever had.

Meet the author: Anna Meriano

Anna Meriano grew up in Houston, Texas,
 with an older brother and a younger brother but (tragically) no sisters. She graduated from Rice University with a degree in English and earned her MFA in Creative Writing with an emphasis in Writing for Children from The New School in New York. She works as a part-time teacher and tutor in Houston, where she lives with her dog Cisco. Anna likes reading, knitting, playing full-contact quidditch, and translating English song lyrics into Spanish and American Sign Language. Her favorite baked goods are the kind that don’t fly away before you eat them. Find her on Twitter @AnnaMisboring
Anna Meriano

the trouble with shooting stars

The Recipe: Wishing

A young artist coming to terms with an injury and the new dynamics in her large Italian family following a traumatic accident gets swept up in the magical world of the spazzitrici - and old Italian order of moon sweepers - but soon learns that there are some things magic can't fix on its own.


Meet the author: Meg Cannistra

Meg Cannistra grew up bouncing between Sarasota, Florida and Brooklyn, New York. A young kid in a big family, her childhood was spent chasing after sisters and cousins and sharing stories while learning to cook. Meg has a BA in English from Flagler College and an MFA in writing for children and young adults from Hamline University. She now lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with her boyfriend. When she’s not taking pictures of her cats, Doom and Gloom, she writes magical, mysterious, and sometimes scary stories. Her debut novel, The Trouble with Shooting Stars, is scheduled for Summer 2019. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram @MegCannistra.

tristan strong punches
a hole in the sky

A middle grade American Gods, Tristan Strong Punches A Hole in the Sky stars a seventh-grade boy who accidentally creates a hole into the Midpass, a world where ancient African gods clash with gods of African-American legend. He must race to find Anansi, the Weaver, and repair the rip before the iron monsters wreaking havoc in the Midpass consume their world and ours.


Meet the author: Kwame Mbalia

Kwame Mbalia is a Midwesterner that fled Wisconsin for warmer temperatures and beach access. He graduated from Howard University with a BSc in Biology, and works in the pharmaceutical calibrations industry. When he's not writing or working, he's reading either to himself or one of his three daughters. He is the author of Tristan Strong Punches A Hole In the Sky, due via Disney’s Rick Riordan Presents imprint in 2020.