New In Town

“In which the fabulous Mortimer Gulch narrowly escapes a town of perfidious ingrates!”

About This Project


Nigh over ten years ago, when I took my first tentative steps into children's book illustration, I asked my agent if I could take a stab at writing a book myself. This saint of a man agreed, and several weeks later I sent him a story that was completely unpublishable as a picture book, being five times longer than anything a sane publisher could make. And thus began the slow process of whittling away at the story that would one day become New In Town.

Over the years, I sent the manuscript to numerous friends, other authors and illustrators, and some very brave publishers. It's a story I told and retold and chopped and rehashed at least two dozen times (I think this version is actually version thirty-six) until finally the heroic folks at Farrar, Straus and Giroux took a chance on me. Thankfully, not all books take that long to make— but I truly believe that the really good ones sometimes take a while to find.

This is New In Town. I'm so glad it's available for you to buy. I worked harder on it than anything else I've ever done in my life. I hope you like it.

» GET THE BOOK: New In Town is available now! Get yourself a copy from your preferred local bookshop or online purveyor! Here’s what folks are saying about it:

  1. » Kirkus Reviews (it's starred!)
  2. » School Library Journal
  3. » Publisher’s Weekly
  4. » The Horn Book
  5. » An Amazon Book of the Month for ages 3-5!
  6. » Interview For Max's Boat

VIRTUAL STORYTIMES: I did four virtual storytimes for the New In Town book tour, and the recorded versions are available below! As well as giving a dramatic reading of my book, I gave a lesson in dramatic drawing at each storytime (and answered quite a few questions about how to draw in general). Please enjoy!

  1. » Interabang Books
  2. » Towne Book Center
  3. » Brazos Bookstore
  4. » Vroman's Bookstore

DOWNLOADABLE GOODIES: Good news! The 8-Step Guide to Dramatic Drawing I used during my tour is available below! And, what's this? The coloring pages I made are still available too! Just download, print, and color! So much drama! Don't overdo it if you don't have smelling salts on hand!

  • Dramatic Drawing Guide

About Kevin

Kevin Cornell spends his days in Philadelphia, drawing made-up things. You know… like a “dog driving a bus”, or a “talking can of beets”. If you ever see a talking can of beets, tell Kevin. He's been trying to figure that one out for years.

He has illustrated several books, websites, and comics, and has been doing it for quite a long time now. There's a ton more work on his old site, if you've a hankering to see more. To see his most current sketches, comics and drawings, check out his instagram.

If you have a book you want Kevin to illustrate, please get in touch with his agent, the distinguished Steve Malk. If you wish to contact Kevin because he's behind on his payments and you need to know where to send the next toe… hmmm… send that to his agent, too.