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

Pages & Co.: The Bookwanderers
Anna James
Illustrator: Paola Escobar
Cyclops of Central Park
Madelyn Rosenberg
Illustrator: Victoria Tentler-Krylov
Cezanne's Parrot
Amy Guglielmo
Illustrator: Brett Helquist
The Bear Must Go On
Dev Petty
Illustrator: Brandon Todd
The Tooth Fairy vs. the Easter Bunny
Jamie L.B. Deenihan
Illustrator: Erin Hunting
Women Artists A to Z
Melanie LaBarge
Illustrator: Caroline Corrigan
A Tear in the Ocean
H. M. Bouwman
Illustrator: Yuko Shimizu
Old Rock (is not boring)
Deb Pilutti
Illustrator: Deb Pilutti
Who Is Jackie Chan?
Jody Jensen Shaffer
Who HQ
Illustrator: Gregory Copeland
Planet Omar: Accidental Trouble Magnet
Zanib Mian
Illustrator: Nasaya Mafaridik
Confessions of a Dork Lord
Mike Johnston
Illustrator: Marta Altés
Rory Branagan: Detective #1
Andrew Clover
Illustrator: Ralph Lazar


Tomorrow I'll Be Kind
Jessica Hische
Illustrator: Jessica Hische
Love from the Crayons
Drew Daywalt
Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers
The Crayons' Christmas
Drew Daywalt
Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers

Coming Soon

ABC: The Alphabet from the Sky
Benedikt Gross
Joey Lee
The Unbelievable Oliver and the Four Jokers
Pseudonymous Bosch
Illustrator: Shane Pangburn
Uh-Oh, Rollo!
Reed Duncan
Illustrator: Keith Frawley
Where's Rollo?
Reed Duncan
Illustrator: Keith Frawley
Lilah Tov Good Night
Ben Gundersheimer (Mister G)
Illustrator: Noar Lee Naggan
Wannabe Farms
Brian McCann
Illustrator: Meghan Lands
Pages & Co.: The Bookwanderers
Anna James
Illustrator: Paola Escobar
Folktales for Fearless Girls
Myriam Sayalero
Illustrator: Dani Torrent
The Three Billy Goats Buenos
Susan Middleton Elya
Illustrator: Miguel Ordóñez
Whoo-Ku Haiku: A Great Horned Owl Story
Maria Gianferrari
Illustrator: Jonathan Voss

Award Winners

Big Red Lollipop
Rukhsana Khan
Illustrator: Sophie Blackall
The Moon Over Star
Dianna Hutts Aston
Illustrator: Jerry Pinkney
Sandy's Circus
Tanya Lee Stone
Illustrator: Boris Kulikov