Kate McKinnon is channeling Weird Barbie for a funky new YA literary franchise.
The “Barbie” actress and “SNL” alum announced she is releasing her debut YA novel “The Millicent Quibb School of Etiquette for Young Ladies of Mad Science,” out October 1. As published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (LBYR), a division of Hachette Book Group, the novel will kick off a “zany” series for middle school readers ages eight to 12. The novel follows the three Porch sisters’ adventures with a mysterious mad scientist. The novel features artwork that McKinnon herself drafted with character drawings, inventions, and diagrams; illustrator Alfredo Cáceres fine-tuned in his signature gothic style.
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Per the official press release, McKinnon has been at work on the novel for years prior to her “SNL” tenure. The star left the sketch series in 2022.
“I wanted to write the kind of book that I would have loved reading when I was younger, when I was eating honeysuckle on the playground and collecting bugs and falling in love with the natural world — I hope young people read about the adventures of the Porch Sisters and are inspired to get out there and have their own adventures,” McKinnon said. “I started playing with the idea of these characters and this world over a decade ago and am so thrilled to finally bring them to an audience, especially with a team as wonderful as the one at LBYR.”
The description for “The Millicent Quibb School of Etiquette for Young Ladies of Mad Science” reads as follows: “Gertrude, Eugenia, and Dee-Dee Porch do not belong. They don’t belong in the snooty town of Antiquarium, where all girls must go to etiquette school and all dogs must be bichon frises. They don’t belong with their adoptive family: their uptight Aunt Desdemona, their materialistic Uncle Ansel, and their seven snide cousins, who are all named Lavinia. And they certainly don’t belong at Mrs. Wintermacher’s etiquette school — they’re far more interested in machines and slugs than posture and little forks. After Mrs. Wintermacher expels them for insubordination, the girls expect to be sent away for good . . . until they receive a mysterious invitation to a new school. Suddenly, the girls find themselves under the tutelage of the infamous Millicent Quibb — a mad scientist with worms in her hair and oysters in her bathtub. At 231 Mysterium Way, the pizza is fatal, the bus is powered by gerbils, and the dean of students is a hermit crab. Dangerous? Yes! More fun than they’ve ever had? Absolutely! But when the sisters are asked to save their town from an evil cabal of nefarious mad scientists, they must learn to embrace what has always made them stand out and determine what side they’re on — before it’s too late!”
This isn’t McKinnon’s first foray into children’s entertainment: The actress previously lent her voice to Netflix’s “The Magic School Bus Rides Again” for the iconic role of Ms. Fiona Frizzle. She also played Lulu the Guinea Pig in “DC League of Super-Pets.”
McKinnon previously addressed her “SNL” exit in a 2022 appearance on “Live With Kelly and Ryan,” saying that she debated leaving the Lorne Michaels-produced series for years.
“All I ever wanted to do in my whole life was be on ‘Saturday Night Live.’ So, I did, I loved it, I had the best decade,” McKinnon said, “and then I was just like, ‘My body was tired,’ and I felt like it was time.”
Fellow TV alum Aubrey Plaza also launched her own YA novel series after starring in “Parks and Recreation.”
McKinnon is managed by Artists First, with her agent at CAA and lawyers at Hansen, Jacobsen, Teller. Her book agent is at Upstart Crow Literary.
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