June 21- June 28, 2006 Edition

Kensington Inks Deal

With Hudson to Start

New Kids Imprint

NEW YORK, NY/6/20/07-­Kensington Publishing Corp., the last independent U.S. publisher of hardcover, trade and mass market paperback books, has joined forces with Hudson Publishing to launch a new African-American imprint for children, called Marimba Books. Hudson is a new company started by the founders of Just Us Books.


Marimba, to focus on spiritual themes, will be published under Kensington’s Dafina Books program beginning in 2008. Dafina is Kensington’s growing African-American publishing imprint for adults, and more recently for young adults. The line will be launched with six titles. Some of the titles will be written by Wade and Cheryl Hudson, founders of Just Us Books. Cheryl will serve as the imprint’s editorial director, and will focus on titles that strive to both educate and entertain. Kensington CEO and president Steve Zacharius sees the line as a “perfect fit” for the company’s growing African-American program.


For more than 30 years, Kensington has been known as an astute and determined David-vs.-Goliath publisher of titles in the full spectrum of categories, from fiction and romance to health and nonfiction. Kensington now accounts for about 7% of all mass market paperback sales in the U.S. Through the Kensington, Zebra, Pinnacle and Citadel press imprints, the company releases close to 600 new books per year and has a backlist of more than 3,000 titles.

The house is considered a leader and innovator in such areas of publishing as African-American (Dafina), Gay and Lesbian, Erotic Romance (Brava), Wicca, and Alternative Health (Twin Streams) and romance. In 1996, the company launched its new erotica line in trade paper and in an eBook format as well. Kensington also has a new website at

Just Us Books, Inc. is an independent publishing company specializing in books and learning materials for children and young people. It focuses on Black history, Black culture and Black experiences. Founded by Wade Hudson and Cheryl Willis Hudson in 1988, this innovative company is now considered one of the leading publishers of Black interest titles for young people.