“Minecraft: Mobs in the Mansion” is out NOW!

Time is a construct. However, it’s OUR construct. (“Ours” as a society, I mean.) So as we use this imperfect system called a “calendar” to mark our time here on this tainted blue orb we call Earth, I wanted to wish all of you a Happy New Year!

And not to turn these totally warm and earnest new year wishes into a blatant narcissistic plug for a new project, BUT – how to say this non-narcissistically? – I have some news to share:

I wrote a Minecraft children’s book called Mobs in the Mansion, which was published today by Penguin Random House. It was illustrated by the amazing Alan Batson. Here’s the official publisher description of the book:

Journey into the world of Minecraft in this Step 3 Step into Reading, the only official leveled reader series based on Minecraft, one of the world’s best-selling video games!

Minecraft® is one of the best-selling video games of all time! And now learning to read has never been more fun for players of the game ages 4 to 7. They’ll get a great introduction to the game’s most mysterious biomes when two players, Emmy and Birch–and their tame wolf Byte–set out on an epic adventure to explore a dark Minecraft mansion!

And if you want to know more:

Check out the book’s page on the Penguin Random House site.

Check out the Amazon page for the book.

Last but definitely not least, feel free to check out some of the other books I’ve written for Penguin Random House.



“96 Facts” News – Holiday Edition

As I mentioned in a previous post, I’ve been working on a series of middle grade celebrity biographies for about a year now. It’s called the “96 Facts” series, and the first two titles in that series, 96 Facts About Taylor Swift and 96 Facts About Timothée Chalamet, are out now from Penguin Random House. Both books are illustrated by the amazing Risa Rodil.

Here’s a TikTok from Penguin Random House’s Penguin Teen imprint about 96 Facts About Taylor Swift:


96 Facts About Taylor Swift – you mean my new favorite book! #taylorswift #swifttok #swifties #timotheechalamet

♬ original sound – Penguin Teen

Also, since it’s the holiday season, a few folks have been recommending 96 Facts About Taylor Swift as a potential gift item. For instance:

The book is #14 on a list of “30 Must-Have Gifts for Taylor Swift Fans” put together by Country Living.

Here’s a video from Christie at the One Blessed Mess YouTube channel. 96 Facts About Taylor Swift is among the “New Stocking Stuffers” she recommends (at the 3:30 mark):


Here’s a video from the Makenzie Cowan YouTube channel called “Let’s Go Christmas Shopping For My Internet BFF!” 96 Facts About Taylor Swift is mentioned (and shown) at the 5:25 mark:


And if you’d like to find out more about my other Penguin Random House projects, take a look at the “Arie Kaplan” page on the PRH site.



I Wrote One of the Stories In Yoto’s 5-Minute Holiday Stories Collection!

Happy Holidays! Hey, speaking of holidays, guess what? I wrote a Hanukkah story for Yoto’s 5-Minute Holiday Stories collection, which is out NOW!

The story I wrote is called “The Dreidel Thief”! In it, Allison plays detective as she tries to find out who took her family’s dreidel. Will she solve this mystery? Download the story or purchase the story card to find out!

Here’s Yoto’s official description of the 5-Minute Holiday Stories collection:

Marvel at the magic of the holiday season in these five stories about winter celebrations: Diwali, Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, and New Year’s.

Experience the magic of the season with our heartwarming collection of winter holiday stories: help twins Gautam and Trevir choose the perfect Diwali gift for their Dadima, join Detective Allison as she hunts for the thief who took her family’s dreidel, find a last-minute Christmas tree on Christmas Eve with Bif the Bear, go on a Kwanzaa-themed scavenger hunt with Tia and Tyreke, and help Bella the New Year’s Eve ball countdown to the New Year!,,These stories are guaranteed to fill your heart with the spirit of the winter holidays.

Written by Joe Vitale, Taeryn Booker, Arie Kaplan, and Sanjeev Sirpal

But wait, there’s more…

I have also written two Christmas-themed children’s books, both of which came out earlier this year. The first one is The Gremlins Little Golden Book, which was illustrated by Meg Dunn. It’s out now from Penguin Random House. As you may have guessed, The Gremlins LGB is an adaptation of the classic 1984 film Gremlins.



And the second one is The Nightmare Before Christmas Paper Models Book, which is out now from Thunder Bay Press. This book is filled with behind-the-scenes anecdotes and trivia about the making of the classic 1993 movie The Nightmare Before Christmas.











Back Issues



Go to Top