According to Variety, Warner Bros. has acquired the James Patterson bestsellers "When the Wind Blows" and "Maximum Ride" with an eye toward turning the young adult books into a kid franchise. Matthew Huffman has been set to write a script based on the first book, and Weed Road's Akiva Goldsman and Kerry Foster will produce.

Patterson, best known for writing the Alex Cross mystery novels that were turned into Kiss The Girls and Along Came a Spider, has turned his storytelling to the half-pint set. Series began with "When the Wind Blows," the story of six genetically engineered kids -- they have wings and can fly -- who are hunted down by the scientists. The sequel book, "Maximum Ride," has topped the New York Times children's bestseller list since it was published in April.

Huffman pitched the Patterson series to Weed Road's Foster, and WB made the deal, with execs Polly Cohen and Jess Rosenthal overseeing the first pic. CAA repped the elements, including the author.

Huffman wrote and directed Secret Santa and Playing Mona Lisa and scripted Me and My Monster for director Neil Jordan and producer Laura Ziskin. He also adapted the Philip Ardagh novel A House Called Awful End for director Francis Lawrence, WB and Weed Road.

Patterson, who began writing while he was head of ad agency J. Walter Thompson, turned to writing full time, and several of his novels are being made into movies and telepics.