Vice President and Publisher, James Patterson
I publish nonfiction books, with a focus on food and cooking, illustrated books, and narrative and expert-driven writing on science, tech, business, pop culture, current events, lifestyle, and humor. I've worked with Dominique Ansel, Michael Anthony, David Boaz, Peter Diamandis, Vivian Howard, Christopher Kimball, Sarah Knight, Jaron Lanier, John Lutz, Samin Nosrat and Wendy MacNaughton, Karen Page, Michael Ruhlman, Mark Schatzker, Daniel Smith, and Jonathan Waxman. Before I joined Little, Brown, I helped start the Regan Arts imprint of Phaidon, and before that was an editor at Simon & Schuster. My career in publishing started as a reader of poetry manuscripts, and I write occasionally about our business for Poets & Writers magazine. I pronounce my last name “Zur-ban.”
I joined Little, Brown as an executive editor in December 2014 after five years as an executive editor at The Crown Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House. Previously I worked as an editor at The Penguin Press, Henry Holt and Basic Books. I have edited and published three winners of the Pulitzer Prize, each of them debut authors: Samantha Power ("A Problem from Hell"), Caroline Elkins (Imperial Reckoning) and Liaquat Ahamed (Lords of Finance). At Little, Brown, I’m proud to have edited Wesley Lowery’s They Can’t Kill Us All, a New York Times bestseller and recipient of the Christopher Isherwood prize for autobiographical prose; #1 New York Times bestseller Kate Fagan’s What Made Maddy Run, longlisted for the PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing; finalist for the FT & McKinsey Business Book of the Year award Jonathan Taplin’s Move Fast and Break Things; and Jancee Dunn’s How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids. Recent acquisitions include Josh Levin’s The Queen, Binyamin Appelbaum’s The Economist’s Hour, Bridgett Davis’s The World According to Fannie Davis, Marisa Meltzer’s This Is Big, and Mosi Secret’s book about a philanthropic experiment, begun in the 1960s, to integrate the elite private schools of the South.
I joined the Little, Brown team in 2016, staking out the treacherous curves at Mulholland Books. I publish all things suspenseful: twist-packed procedurals, domestic and psychological thrillers, and even true crime. Forthcoming projects are Karen Ellis’s A Map of the Dark, Kent Anderson’s Green Sun, three novels by Malcolm Mackay, and Michelle Sacks’s debut You Were Made For This. I honed my editing pen and speed-reading skills at Vintage and Anchor Books, working with fiction and nonfiction authors including Elisha Cooper, Mark Z. Danielewski, James Ellroy, Christopher McDougall, Sarah Menkedick, Dexter Palmer, Pulitzer Prize–winner Heather Ann Thompson, Andrew Vachss, and Andrea Wulf. Little did I know when I started at Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine ten years ago that I was building a career in the most welcoming corner of publishing.
Proud to be an alumna of Mount Holyoke College, member of Sisters in Crime, and resident of Queens. I pronounce my last name “jill-yer-AH-no.”