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’m excited to have joined this fantastic team in February 2020 and am hungry to find suspense of all kinds for Mulholland Books—including domestic suspense, psychological thrillers, mysteries, crime, horror, and true crime—and commercial and women’s fiction for Little, Brown. I love literary page-turners with a rich sense of place, character-driven suspense, and narratives that open up unexpected perspectives or closed-off communities. My list includes Lauren Beukes’s Afterland, Kathleen Kent’s The Burn, Zoje Stage’s Wonderland, and beloved authors Denise Mina, Elizabeth Hand, and Allen Eskens. I previously spent six years at G. P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Random House, where I edited Kate Weinberg, Camille Perri, Jacob Tobia, Robert Hillman, Sasha Sagan, and Jeni McFarland, and worked with writers including Delia Owens, Jill Santopolo, Lisa Gardner, and Frances Liardet. I got my start in the industry with positions at Other Press and Viking/Penguin, after years of indie bookselling at the Boulder Book Store and the Tattered Cover Book Store in Colorado.