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What Jessica Faust Has Been Reading

Every year in the life of a literary agent is so different. Last year I felt like I read a ton of books for pleasure. This year I’m spending more time on submissions. The good news is that I’m really caught up on my submissions (I’ve read every bit of requested material through received through March), but really behind on my to be read pile.

This month has been good to me though and I’ve gotten two books in. One was a gift from an editor and exactly the type of book I’d like to add to my #MSWL. The other is a personal interest, but not likely something I’d represent.

The Memory of Lemon is exactly the type of Magical Realism Women’s Fiction I’m seeking. The fact that this revolves around a baker (a personal love of mine) is an added bonus. The book, by Judith Fertig, will be published in just a few weeks.

Because I love food, It Starts with Food by Melissa and Dallas Hartwig was a really interesting read for me. This was the book that starts the Whole30 diet (Paleo) and I enjoyed what they had to say. I had a conversation with an editor about this book and we both agreed that we really liked the tone the authors’ took in their writing. It wasn’t preachy or overly complicated. I’m not sure how everyone else reads nonfiction, but I don’t tend to read it from cover to cover. Instead I flip through and read those parts that interest me in the moment. For that reason, a book like this tends to sit at my side for a while until I feel I’ve gotten all I can out of it.

It’s a short list today, but hopefully one I can add too soon.

Category: Blog



  1. I know writers have to read the latest in their genre to keep up with trends, style, voice etc. It’s why I have a bunch of first-in-series read but haven’t always had the time to follow up with the sequels.

    Do agents have to do the same to stay up with trends in publishing? Or because you are in regular contact with publishers do you generally have your finger on the pulse? As you say, you are reading so many submissions I don’t see how you could find the time to read for trend-sake.

  2. Sorry, was not sure how to contact you (Jessica Faust) not on social media 🙁
    Reading the Orchard Mysteries of Sheila Connolly and I am missing “Called Home”….
    I can only find it for Kindle… can I get a copy of this book?
    Thanks….jude trimnal [email protected]

    1. This works. I’m afraid Called Home is only available in ebook format for now. I believe you can get it through Google and other platforms as a pdf download.

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