Meet Penguin Young Readers Group

Jennifer Loja


Jen Loja is currently the president of Penguin Young Readers (a division of Penguin Random House) where she oversees the division.

Jen began her career in books as a buyer for Joseph-Beth Booksellers. She then moved into the publishing world at Candlewick Press as a National Account Manager.  There she called on a variety of national accounts both retail and wholesale.  Jen then moved to a sales position at Houghton Mifflin where she was responsible for the wholesale channel as well as Canadian sales.  She joined Harcourt in September of 2004 as VP of Sales, Children’s Books and was named VP of Sales & Marketing, Children’s Books in 2007. At the merger of Houghton Mifflin and Harcourt she became the Associate Publisher of the HMH children’s list.

She joined Penguin Young Readers in 2009 as the Associate Publisher of the group.

Jocelyn Schmidt

Vice President, Associate Publisher

Jocelyn Schmidt is Vice President, Associate Publisher Penguin Young Readers. She currently oversees the development of the PYR list, working with ten publishers to bring the perfect book to every reader at the perfect time.

Jocelyn joined PYR in 2005 as brand director, managing picture book and author brands as mini-businesses within PYR. Prior to her time at PYR, she was in the Random House adult mass merchandise sales division for 12 years, taking on many roles. She sold to airport retailers then moved to a liaison position, partnering with the publishers under the Random House umbrella and setting positioning and goals for their books in the mass channel. Along the way, she oversaw the sales team for Target, Walmart and the airports, and in her last role managed the mass merch field sales force. Jocelyn started her career in books as a Barnes and Noble bookseller, with training in both in-store operations and merchandising.

Stephanie Sabol

Executive Director of Brand and Business Management

Stephanie Sabol is the Executive Director of Brand and Business Management at Penguin Young Readers. In her current role, she works on the business strategy for PYR’s key brands, working closely with the publishing, marketing and sales teams. She is the business contact for authors, agents and estates for these brands. Stephanie also manages the licensing rights for non-book products on a selection of PYR brands.

Prior to working in the Penguin Young Readers publishing office, Stephanie worked in the sales department of Penguin Young Readers and Random House for ten years, selling to Barnes & Noble, the warehouse clubs, and digital accounts. She originally joined Random House in 2004.

New Releases

Himno americano
Gene Scheer
Illustrator: Fahmida Azim
Illustrator: Elizabeth Baddeley
Illustrator: Matt Faulkner
Illustrator: Michelle Lee
Illustrator: Rafael López
Illustrator: Veronica Miller Jamison
Illustrator: Christine Almeda
Illustrator: Edel Rodriguez
Illustrator: James McMullan
Illustrator: Laura McGee Kvasnosky
Illustrator: Kate Harvey McGee
Illustrator: London Ladd
Illustrator: Jacqueline Alcantara
The Biggest Little Boy
Poppy Harlow
Illustrator: Ramona Kaulitzki
Huda F Are You?
Huda Fahmy
Illustrator: Huda Fahmy
She Persisted: Maria Tallchief
Christine Day
Chelsea Clinton
Illustrator: Alexandra Boiger
Illustrator: Gillian Flint
The Legend of the Christmas Witch
Dan Murphy
Aubrey Plaza
Illustrator: Julia Iredale
Who Was David Bowie?
Margaret Gurevich
Who HQ
Illustrator: Andrew Thomson
Pitch Partners #2
Laura D'Asaro
Rose Wang
Heather Alexander
Illustrator: Vanessa Flores
JR Ford
Vanessa Ford
Illustrator: Kayla Harren
Over, Bear! Under, Where?
Julie Hedlund
Illustrator: Michael Slack
Margot Mertz Takes It Down
Carrie McCrossen
Ian McWethy
Sky Watcher #5
Kelly Starling Lyons
Illustrator: Nneka Myers
I Don't Want to Read This Book
Max Greenfield
Illustrator: Mike Lowery
Llama Llama Numbers
Anna Dewdney
Illustrator: JT Morrow
The Me Tree
Ashley Belote
Illustrator: Ashley Belote
Between Shades of Gray
Ruta Sepetys
Illustrator: Dave Kopka
You Can Be ABCs
Robert Samuel White II
Robert Samuel White III
Illustrator: Robert Paul Jr.
Téo's Tutu
Maryann Jacob Macias
Illustrator: Alea Marley
Santa in the City
Tiffany D. Jackson
Illustrator: Reggie Brown
Football Baby
Diane Adams
Illustrator: Charlene Chua


Three Little Engines
Bob McKinnon
Illustrator: Lou Fancher
Illustrator: Steve Johnson
The Circles All Around Us
Brad Montague
Illustrator: Brad Montague
Illustrator: Kristi Montague
Llama Llama Meets the Babysitter
Anna Dewdney
Reed Duncan
Illustrator: JT Morrow
The Last Kids on Earth: Thrilling Tales from the Tree House
Max Brallier
Illustrator: Douglas Holgate
Illustrator: Jay Cooper
Illustrator: Anoosha Syed
Illustrator: Lorena Alvarez
Illustrator: Christopher Mitten
Illustrator: Xavier Bonet
Who Is Kamala Harris?
Kirsten Anderson
Who HQ
Illustrator: Manuel Gutierrez
Champ and Major: First Dogs
Joy McCullough
Illustrator: Sheyda Abvabi Best
Jan Brett
Illustrator: Jan Brett
Misty Copeland
Illustrator: Setor Fiadzigbey

Coming Soon

Wannabe Farms
Brian McCann
Illustrator: Meghan Lands
Who Were Stanley and Livingstone?
Jim Gigliotti
Who HQ
Illustrator: David Malan
What Is the Story of Captain Kirk?
M. D. Payne
Who HQ
Illustrator: Robert Squier
She Persisted: Helen Keller
Courtney Sheinmel
Chelsea Clinton
Illustrator: Alexandra Boiger
Illustrator: Gillian Flint
Who Is Queen Elizabeth II?
Megan Stine
Who HQ
Illustrator: Laurie A. Conley
Ben and Emma's Big Hit
Gavin Newsom
Ruby Shamir
Illustrator: Alexandra Thompson
A New Sheriff in Town #3
Brett Bean
Illustrator: Brett Bean
A Raven Named Grip
Marilyn Singer
Illustrator: Edwin Fotheringham
Dinosaurs on Kitty Island
Michael Slack
Illustrator: Michael Slack
Pages & Co.: The Book Smugglers
Anna James
Illustrator: Marco Guadalupi
She Persisted: Oprah Winfrey
Renée Watson
Chelsea Clinton
Illustrator: Alexandra Boiger
Illustrator: Gillian Flint
Llama Llama Colors
Anna Dewdney
Illustrator: JT Morrow
The House of Love
Adriana Trigiani
Illustrator: Amy June Bates

Award Winners

I Am Every Good Thing
Derrick Barnes
Illustrator: Gordon C. James
When Stars Are Scattered
Victoria Jamieson
Omar Mohamed
Illustrator: Victoria Jamieson
Illustrator: Iman Geddy
The Cat Man of Aleppo
Karim Shamsi-Basha
Irene Latham
Illustrator: Yuko Shimizu
Sing a Song
Kelly Starling Lyons
Illustrator: Keith Mallett