Swoon Reads

Swoon Reads publishes under Feiwel and Friends, an imprint of Macmillan.

Our team is dedicated to finding and publishing new Young Adult love stories, with the help of the Swoon Reads community. We involve our readers in every step of the publishing process, and work closely with selected writers to help get their book ready for publication.

Meet the Team

Jean Feiwel Senior VP and Publisher
I am the Publisher of Feiwel and Friends and Square Fish and Senior Vice-President of Macmillan. Before joining the company in 2006, I was Publisher at Scholastic for some twenty-something years where one of my proudest accomplishments was creating The Baby-Sitter’s Club with Ann Martin. My full bio, which is too long winded to go into here, is on the Feiwel and Friends Facebook page. The reason for Swoon Reads is because reading romance makes me happy. And to be able to escape into a world——real or imagined——where the connection between two people is all encompassing is a trip I will take anytime.
A Little Q & A
Favorite YA or NA romance novel or author?
Colleen Hoover.
Book that everyone should read?
Endless Love by Scott Spencer.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Coming up with book ideas. Discovering new talent.
Best moment in your publishing career?
The Baby-Sitters Club hitting the USA Today bestseller list.
If you could be any book character, whom would you choose?
Mia Thermopolis in The Princess Diaries.
What makes you laugh out loud?
Bulldog puppies.
If you were stranded on a desert island, who or what would you want for company?
My daughter, Emma.
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Holly West with ALSD pages
Holly West
Associate Editor to the Publisher
My official title is Associate Editor to the Publisher, Feiwel & Friends and Swoon Reads. After growing up in a small town in Southern Kentucky as "that girl who reads a lot," I ran away to the big city with the dream of working with books. After a brief stint in adult publicity, I decided editorial would be more fun and joined Feiwel and Friends as Jean's assistant in 2008. Then Jean came up with the idea for Swoon Reads, I signed up immediately, and here we are! I'm always looking for smart, funny romance novels, preferably with a bit of action. Books that lift my mood no matter how bad my day has been.
"Death cannot stop True Love. All it can do is delay it for a while."
– Westley from The Princess Bride
A Little Q & A
First Romance Novel?
The first romance novel I can remember buying for myself was Castles by Julie Garwood. It had a purple cover with a sparkling castle on it, that appealed to both to my love of fantasy and my tendency to go "ooh, shiny!"But the novel that really addicted me to the genre was the Harlequin Love and Laughter edition of Anyone But You by Jennifer Crusie – not only was it great and funny (with a dog!) but the series packaging told me that there were more of these books out there.
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis; The Immortals series by Tamora Pierce; The Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander; The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede; The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams; The Discworld series by Terry Pratchett; The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan; anything by David Eddings... basically, I read a LOT of fantasy as a child and teenager... Then I discovered romance and I've been alternating back and forth between my genres ever since.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Working with authors. Being surrounded by books. Spending huge chunks of a day thinking about and talking about stories, and getting paid for it. Finding books (and authors!) that I fall in love with and then getting to help make said books even better. Spending the work week interacting with people who love books as much as I do. Having the chance to come to work and be passionate about and invested in what I’m working on. Oh, and did I mention the books?
If you were a super hero, what would your super power be?
Being the huge geek that I am, I've put a lot of thought into this one, and I've decided that I really want the ability to use the magic system described in whatever book I am holding. The better described the magic system, the easier it would be to use. I'm thinking it would work rather like Jim C. Hines's Libromancer, but with magic instead of physical objects.But if I can't have that, I would be willing to accept teleportation as a substitute.
Do you have any pets?
Yes, I have a very smart, very black, cat named Isis. And, as is proper in a cat named after a goddess, she's convinced that she is the center of the universe. Here she is 'helping' me work.
Isis, the cat
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Lauren Scobell
Director of Swoon Reads
As Director of Swoon Reads I get to work on a little bit of everything—the website, the blog, working with our authors, editorial, marketing…the list goes on!! I previously worked at Nickelodeon, but I’ve always loved stories, so moving into publishing was an inevitable career change for me. I am always reading, I love to write and I will revert to a 15 year old fan-girl at a moment’s notice – especially if you show me a pug picture (I have major cute aggression).
"You may tell a tale that takes up residence in someone’s soul, becomes their blood and self and purpose. That tale will move them and drive them and who knows what they might do because of it, because of your words. That is your role, your gift."
– The Night Circus, Erin Morgenstern
"Of course this is happening in your head Harry. But why on earth should that mean that it is not real?"
– Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows, J.K. Rowling
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
I loved Patricia Wrede’s Enchanted Forest Chronicles and Tamora Pierce’s Lioness Quartet. I have several copies of them, all falling apart at the binding from being read so many times with little dog ears at my favorite parts (In the Hand of the Goddess might be in the worst shape). I still like to reread them as an adult. I’ve always loved fantasy, strong female characters and a good love story, and these worlds were ones I could never get enough of.
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Jamie Fraser and Claire Randall from Outlander… I think there is no greater love story.
“Ye werena the first lass I kissed," he said softly. "But I swear you'll be the last.” ―Jamie Fraser, Outlander
What do you love about working in publishing?
How to choose?! Being new to publishing, the mere fact that I have bookshelves in my office, and get books DELIVERED to my office, and get to talk stories all day long with talented people that are just as passionate about books as I am is nothing short of a dream come true. I get to READ for work. Somehow, I’ve managed to do the thing I love most and get paid for it, and really, what could be better than that?
What makes you laugh out loud?
Anything I can fangirl over (I get happy laughs), pugs, and Anna Kendrick.
What's your favorite song?
Anything by Taylor Swift. Her songs are the equivalent of a great YA book. She’s able to take you back to experiences in your life that you are supposed to only get once. I’m always amazed at the simplicity and yet realness of her words.
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Allison V.
Vice President, Publicity
I’m the VP of Publicity at Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group. I spend my days talking about books with authors, booksellers, producers, and reviewers.
"People disappeared, reappeared, made plans to go somewhere, and then lost each other, searched for each other, found each other a few feet away."
– The Great Gatsby
A Little Q & A
First romance novel?
Definitely Judy Blume's Forever. I came across that on a library shelf and never looked at boys named Ralph the same way again.
Favorite children's book as a child and now?
The Phantom Tollbooth, I loved it as a child and love it even more as a grown up.
If you were stranded on a desert island, who or what would you want for company?
My husband. What can I say; I'm an old fashioned romantic. Also, he's quite handy and would be able to craft a boat out of wet sand and leaves if we start to get sick of each other or run out of things to do on the island.
Do you have a pet?
I was lucky enough to grow up with Golden Retrievers and Labradors, and eagerly await the day I have enough space and time to get my own dog.
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Mariel D. Director of Promo, Advertising, and Creative Services, MacKids
"You can do whatever you want with your life, but one day you'll know what love truly is. It's the sour and the sweet. And I know sour, which allows me to appreciate the sweet."
From Vanilla Sky
A Little Q & A
Favorite children's book as a child and now?
As a child, hands down it was Hatchet by Gary Paulsen. I learned then that no matter how hard life gets, you never ever give up. Now my favorite children's book is On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman because it's a beautiful reminder of our infinite and lasting connection to the universe. There will never ever be anyone like me, but me in the world.
Book that everyone should read?
The Time Traveler's Wife! True love doesn't exist in space in time. It lives beyond those constraints and never dies.
What makes you laugh out loud?
My baby girl on a daily basis. She's got quite the personality!
What's your favorite song?
One of my all-time favorite songs is "On My Own" from Les Miserables. Everyone should know what unrequited love feels like...it prepares you for the gratitude you'll have for when true reciprocal love comes your way.
Do you have any pets?
REMES is the smartest, most handsome pug you will ever meet. He quite literally saved my life. Licked the tears off my face when my heart was broken. He's my best friend and I know he'll be the first to greet me when this life ends and our next one begins.
REMES, the dog
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Caitlin S. Digital Marketing Manager
I love the internet and I love books, so working on a website about books makes me swoon!
A Little Q & A
Favorite children's book as a child and now?
Animorphs!
Book that everyone should read?
The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson
What do you do on a rainy day?
Sleep!
If you were a super hero, what would your super power be?
Creating websites with my mind!
Do you have any pets?
Cats!
Caitlin Sweeny's cat
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HollyH
Holly H. Deputy Director of Subsidiary Rights
I talk with romance readers all around the world to spread the love, so our Swoon titles can be published in as many languages as possible.
"Book lovers never go to bed alone."
Anon
A Little Q & A
First romance novel?
Forever by Judy Blume.
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
I loved the old Scholastic Sunfire historical romances. The bad guy never stole the girl's heart in the end, but I loved seeing love through the eyes of history.
What do you do on a rainy day?
Curl up with a blanket, my cat, and binge watch TV with a good 'ship to follow.
If you were stranded on a desert island, who or what would you want for company?
The hottie from Outlander.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
Flying!
Do you have any pets?
Tigger!
Tigger Bookshelf
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Helen B. Assistant Editor, Macmillan Children's Books (U.K.)
My job is to make sure all us YA romance fans are swooning here in the U.K.! I collaborate with the team in the U.S. to select, edit and publish swoonworthy books, keeping in mind what is working in the U.K. specifically.
"Whatever colours you have, in your mind, I'll show them to you, and you'll see them shine."
Bob Dylan, Lay, Lady, Lay
A Little Q & A
Book that everyone should read?
Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman.
If you could spend one day inside any literary world with any literary character, where and who would it be?
In the March family home (of Little Women) with Meg, Jo, Beth, Amy, and Laurie, on a good day, messing around and performing one of Jo's plays!
Best advice you've ever been given?
It'll be alright in the end. If it's not alright, it's not the end!
What do you do on a rainy day?
When it rains, my favorite thing to do is to don all my wet-weather gear – raincoat, waterproof trousers and wellies (I believe they’re called galoshes in the States – which, quite frankly, is a fantastic word), and head out to splash through puddles and water-logged fields. Preferably with a dog in tow. (I don’t actually have a dog... so that is more challenging to arrange.) Then the absolute highlight is coming back in to the warm and dry and having a big cup of tea and some cake, and curling up with a book, of course!
If you were stranded on a desert island, who or what would you want for company?
I would like breakfast (as in, an unlimited supply of whatever I might fancy for breakfast every day), a magic book that contains a new story every time you need one, sunscreen, sunglasses, and then perhaps Ryan Gosling for company?!
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Claire C. Children's Publisher, Pan Macmillan Australia
I've been the children's publisher at Pan Macmillan Australia for six years and am the lucky publisher of some extraordinary YA authors such as Cath Crowley, Fiona Wood, Simmone Howell, and Jaclyn Moriarty. I am also part of the global Swoon team, reading and commenting on manuscripts, from afar.
"If there ever comes a day when we can't be together, keep me in your heart. I'll stay there forever."
Winnie the Pooh
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger and The Color Purple by Alice Walker. I read both of these when I was a teenager and they were the two books that really opened my head and my heart to the wonder of words.
Books that everyone should read?
Emma by Jane Austen. (Or Bleak House by Charles Dickens. Or The Book Thief by Markus Zusak...)
What do you love about working in publishing?
That moment of discovery when a new voice leaps from the page and entrances me completely.
What makes you laugh out loud?
Lots. My family. My friends. I am also very good at laughing at myself.
What do you do on a rainy day?
I enjoy using my umbrella – a large multi-striped one. I’ve always loved umbrellas and cumulonimbus clouds. (Sydney has sudden, spectacular storms).
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Molly B. Associate Director, Publicity
I secure media and organize events for both the Swoon Reads brand, as well as for specific titles including The Boy Next Door and Velvet.
"Now all these tastes improve, through the view that comes with you."
Jets to Brazil
A Little Q & A
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Rhett Butler and Scarlett O'Hara.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Getting paid to talk about books (which I'd probably be doing anyway!)
If you could spend one day inside any literary world with any literary character, where and who would it be?
I'd love to visit the underground nightclub in This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales!
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
Controlling the weather!
Do you have any pets?
Jay Catsby!
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Jen E. National Account Manager, Merchandise Sales
"Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you."
The Shadow of the Wind
A Little Q & A
Favorite children's book as a child and now?
The book I read the most often is A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith. My aunt gave me this book when I was in 4th grade and I absolutely loved it. I try and re-read every few years and it never disappoints. This book should be on everyone's "to-read" list.
What do you do on a rainy day?
It should come as no surprise but on rainy days, I like to curl up with a good book. I have a very comfy red couch that I like to snuggle into, open a good book and forget that the weather outside is miserable.
Do you have any pets?
No pets. I travel a lot for work so I don't think it would be fair to leave so often. If I could, I would definitely get a dog.
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Nicole B. Publicist
Nicole here! I’m a publicist here at Macmillan which basically means I get to gush about books all day every day. Pretty great setup, right?
"You will learn a lot about yourself if you stretch in the direction of goodness, of bigness, of kindness, of forgiveness, of emotional bravery. Be a warrior for love."
Cheryl Strayed from Tiny Beautiful Things
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
Maybe it’s the Minnesota in me, but I absolutely ADORED the Little House on the Prairie books. And I definitely read Alice in Wonderland one or two or ten times.
Book that everyone should read?
Anything from Cheryl Strayed or David Levithan (personal favorite, The Lover’s Dictionary. Gorgeous.).
If you could spend one day inside any literary world with any literary character, where and who would it be?
Definitely September from Catherynne M. Valente’s Fairyland series!
What do you do on a rainy day?
Usually, go visit my favorite neighborhood coffee shop armed with many books and spend the morning drinking lattes, reading, and listening to country music – all of my very favorite things!
Do you have any pets?
Yes! That adorable fluffy/cuddly Golden below is Bailey (also known as Uncle Bailey when my sister’s Boston visits!).
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Katie F. Marketing Manager
I read manuscripts for the Swoon website.
"You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me."
C.S. Lewis
A Little Q & A
First romance novel?
Would we feel comfortable calling Flowers in the Attic a romance novel? Because if so, that’s the first one I read!
Book that everyone should read?
I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith.
What do you love about working in publishing?
I am an enthusiastic person and I love talking about books. Working in marketing at a publishing house means I spend a large portion of my time enthusiastically talking about books.
What makes you laugh out loud?
Getting some serious side-eye from my cat, Nora.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
Speed-Reading Girl to the rescue!
Tell us something about you that no one else knows (or a fun fact about yourself).
I don't know how to drive a car or ride a bike, so I depend on my legs (and the subway) to get me around town.
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Jennifer G.
Sales Coordinator
I run the Swoon Reads twitter account and love reading swoonworthy manuscripts for the editorial board.
"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
– The Little Prince
A Little Q & A
Favorite children's book as a child and now?
When I was very young my favorite book was The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear. I made my mother read it to me countless times, but re-reading it as an adult I realized that narrator was even sneakier than I thought.
Book that everyone should read?
To Kill a Mockingbird – hands down.
Most romantic scene you've ever read?
There are so many! But one of my favorite scenes is from the end of Little Women: "'I have nothing to give back but a full heart and these empty hands' cried the Professor... Jo put both her hands into his, whispering tenderly, 'Not empty now' and, stooping down, kissed her Friedrich under the umbrella."
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
When I was little there was a TV show called Out of This World about a girl who had the power to freeze time just by putting her index fingers together. I always thought this would be a great power (especially when I found myself up late studying for a test).
Do you have pets?
I live with a peculiar black cat named “Kali”. She is difficult to photograph and is basically the boss of the apartment.
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Katie H.
Marketing Manager, School & Library
My name is Katie H. and I work in the School and Library marketing department. When I’m not off at a conference rubbing elbows with amazing authors, teachers, and librarians I am writing about some of my favorite books on the Swoon Says blog!
"Cinderella never asked for a prince. She asked for a night off and a dress."
–Kiera Cass
A Little Q & A
Favorite children's book as a child and now?
Sweet Valley High!
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Tessa Gray and Will Herondale (Cassandra Clare's Infernal Devices).
Best moment in your publishing career?
Taking the call from the Committee Chair notifying us that Midwinter Blood had won the Printz Award.
What's your favorite song?
It changes all the time but right now I am listening to Sara Bareilles’ I Choose You on repeat.
If you were stranded on a desert island, who or what would you want for company?
My husband. Not only could I not imagine life without him but he is also very handy so that would certainly come in handy on a desert island!
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Liz S.
Editor-in-Chief, Feiwel & Friends
Reader and blogger for Swoon Reads.
"Our books are friends for life."
– The Feiwel & Friends motto!
A Little Q & A
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Ponyboy and Cherry (and Ponyboy and Johnny) from The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton.
If you could spend one day inside any literary world with any literary character, where and who would it be?
One day? Then it will have to be aboard the Rampion spaceship with Captain Carswell Thorne from the Lunar Chonicles books by Marissa Meyer. I’m just saying…
Best advice you've ever been given?
This too shall pass.
What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
My greatest accomplishment has two parts: first, having moved to NYC a few decades ago, and second, and most importantly, my husband and son.
Tell us something about you that no one else knows (or a fun fact about yourself).
When I drive, I turn the volume way, WAY up!
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Christine Barcellona
Associate Editor, Square Fish
As Jean’s assistant, I help out with Feiwel & Friends books and Square Fish paperbacks. I also love blogging and reading for Swoon Reads. I’m often found lurking around the Flatiron Building with my camera, taking pictures of Swoon gatherings.
"I wish I could make my hands a snow globe and hold this moment under glass forever."
– Bryan Charles, Grab on to Me Tightly As If I Knew the Way
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
A few childhood favorites were The Chronicles of Narnia, So You Want to Be a Wizard, anything Star Wars-related, the Dear America series, Island of the Blue Dolphins, and My Side of the Mountain. I really wanted to live in the woods and have an awesome falcon sidekick. Or to go on the Oregon Trail. Or to be a Jedi. Or all three.
Book that everyone should read?
Who can choose just one? A few books that I’ve been recommending to everyone lately are Fangirl, Love in the Time of Global Warming, Love Letters to the Dead, This One Summer, and Mortal Danger. They’re just a few of my current obsessions.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Working on books, being surrounded by books, talking about books, getting free books, thinking about books all the time, knowing that everyone around me loves books as much as I do.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
Teleportation. No more monthly subway pass and long commute for me. I’d teleport myself to Paris every day after work, eat dinner in Montmartre, and then teleport myself home. That’s the dream.
Tell us a fun fact about yourself.
In high school, I earned a letter jacket for literary criticism. I was like the bookish version of a mathlete. It’s kind of awesome that in the Texas public school system, both football players and super nerds can earn letter jackets. It’s fair that way.
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Erin C.
Sales Coordinator for Macmillan, Reader and Blogger for Swoon Reads
Born and raised on the Jersey Shore, I always had a fascination with NYC and books, and now I get to combine my love of the two in my daily life and work. My work for Swoon Reads includes reading manuscripts for potential publication and blogging for the Swoon Reads site, where I offer helpful tips and suggestions on writing/editing manuscripts.
A Little Q & A
What do you love about working in publishing?
Getting to read awesome books (for free) before they publish.
Best moment in your publishing career?
The very first time my blog entry for Swoon Reads went up on the site!
If you could spend one day inside any literary world with any literary character, where and who would it be?
Exploring Redwall Abbey with all of Brian Jacques’ wonderful creatures in his Redwall series.
What's your idea of fun?
Getting together with friends to discuss a good book over some wine and cheese.
Do you have any pets?
My maltipoo Cosette (or as I like to refer to her: the “mini” love of my life); named after Victor Hugo’s heroine in Les Miserables. She can always be found in my lap while I’m enjoying a good book.
cosette
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Claire T.
National Accounts Manager, Children's Sales
Most of my Swoon-time is spent writing for the blog (so fun!) and I also do a lot of reading (also so fun!).
"You stood there with me in the doorway, My hands shake, I’m not usually this brave but, you pull me in and I’m a little more brave, it’s the first kiss, it’s flawless, really something, it’s fearless."
– Taylor Swift
A Little Q & A
First romance novel?
Gone with the Wind was the first book I read that was like “wow, that’s SUPER romantic, let’s read that part again.” Marjorie Morningstar was the first book I read where there was… “adult content” that I understood and thought “oh, wow, major swoon.”
Favorite YA or NA romance novel or author?
I’m a HUGE fan of Christina Lauren right now, those are some racy pages in there, but also the stories are actually interesting, good characters and better dialogue than most New Adult.
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Here are four fictional couples I would invited to my Swoon Reads dinner party: Finnikin and Isaboe (Finnikin of the Rock, Melina Marchetta); Kate and Richard (Unlikely Romance of Kate Bjorkman, Louise Plummer); Mia and Adam (If I Stay and Where She Went, Gayle Foreman); and Beatrice and Benedict (Much Ado about Nothing, Shakespeare). My date would be Gale from The Hunger Games (now that he's single!).
What's your favorite song?
Here is my Swoon Reads (abbreviated) playlist:
Come on Get Higher by Matt Nathanson
Kiss Me by Ed Sheeran
In Your Atmosphere by John Mayer
Never Let Me Go by Florence + the Machine
Stay by Alison Krauss
From Where I'm Standing by Schuyler Fisk
If It Kills Me by Jason Mraz
Slide by Goo Goo Dolls
Everything by Lifehouse
Stubborn Love by Lumineers
• And a lot of Taylor Swift songs.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
I think my ideal superhero is Sydney Bristow (aka Jennifer Garner) from Alias – even though technically she’s just a human, she is so kick-butt and smart too. But I guess being invisible and being able to fly would also be pretty great.
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Kathryn L.
Associate Director of Marketing
I coordinate across all departments to plan and execute the promotion of our books, plus create and manage operational functions. It doesn’t sound sexy, but I love it!
"Never say love is 'like' anything... It isn't."
– Michael Chabon, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh
A Little Q & A
Favorite YA or NA romance novel or author?
I’ve got to go classic and say Judy Blume’s Forever. That book changed my life as a fourteen-year-old. And it sort of made me terrified of boys until I went to college.
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
I’m a not-so-secret horror nut, and have been since I was young. I started with R.L. Stine and Christopher Pike and graduated to Stephen King sometime in high school. If it’s going to give me nightmares, I have to read it!
What do you love about working in publishing?
I love working with my colleagues to come up with new and exciting ways to introduce books and authors to the world. Having the opportunity to be creative is what makes me excited to come to work every day.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
I would teleport so I never needed to commute or get on a plane ever again.
Do you have any pets?
I have two crazy cats, Stringer and Avon. They are basically the center of my universe, but please don’t tell my husband. Avon is also kinda sorta the Swoon mascot.
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Ashley W.
Marketing Manager
Even though I work in marketing, I’m a consumer in every sense of the word: I love shopping, indie movies, all kinds of books, live music, and eating just about anything. There aren’t enough hours in my life for all the things I love.
"I need you so much closer."
– Death Cab for Cutie, Transatlanticism
A Little Q & A
An author or book that inspired you?
Tiny Beautiful Things, by Cheryl Strayed. I just read it a perfect time in my life where I was questioning everything, and she gave me so many answers in an elegant but also no-nonsense language that spoke directly to my heart. This book is like the big sister I’ve always wanted: Someone who’ll tell you like it is, with love.
Most romantic scene you've ever read?
I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson. When Noah and Brian finally got together, I thought I was going to die. There’s this one line: “He kissed me so hard, I went blind.” that I swear I read eighteen times in a row. Sometimes I just open the book and read that page. So good.
What do you love about working in publishing?
FREE BOOKS! But also that I get to work on a product I love so much and one that I know is making the world a better place. (But also free books.)
What makes you laugh out loud?
Every episode of New Girl.
What's your favorite song?
(See my quote.) I also have that line tattooed on my leg.
Do you have any pets?
Meet Winnie!
Winnie
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Summer O.
Marketing Coordinator
I write for the Swoon blog, seemingly about television and YA books, but in actuality, mostly about myself.
"I just like hanging out with you all the time."
– Taylor Swift, Stay Stay Stay
A Little Q & A
First romance novel?
Jason and Marceline by Jerry Spinelli.
Most romantic scene you've ever read?
When Rudy rescues Liesel's book in The Book Thief.
If you could spend one day inside any literary world with any literary character, where and who would it be?
Hogwarts. With anyone. I’d spend a day at Hogwarts with Marietta Edgecombe, the Judas of Dumbledore’s Army, if it meant I could spend even a second at Hogwarts.
What's your favorite song?
My favorite love song (that people probably don’t think of as a love song) is Animal by Kesha.
Tell us a fun fact about yourself.
I danced Hula competitively from when I was 6 until I was 17.
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Emily S.
Administrative Assistant to the Publisher, Feiwel & Friends and Swoon Reads
Long ago in a faraway land known as “The Suburbs,” my big sister read me Bambi so many times that I memorized the whole thing, page turns and all. My love of great stories has only grown since then.
"Not all who wander are lost."
– J.R.R. Tolkien
A Little Q & A
Favorite YA or NA novel or author?
Tamora Pierce. I’ve reread every single one of her books practically on a yearly basis since I was 13.
Book that everyone should read?
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. It completely validates everything that we love and value about books and reading.
Best advice you've ever been given?
One of my favorite teachers once said, “The broader your curiosity, the more you’re empowering yourself.” I think being a reader and being curious go hand in hand. Both traits drive us to learn more about our world and experience things for ourselves.
What do you do on a rainy day?
This will probably sound super weird, but I LOVE to go out for a run when it’s raining. There’s something about rain runs that are really refreshing. Then coming home to a hot shower, some tea, and a book feels extra awesome!
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
I love to travel and I’ve always been both a history and science fiction buff, so I’d probably pick the ability to bend time and space like Hiro from Heroes. Time travel and teleportation (or my own TARDIS!) would be pretty sweet. I’d be like, “BRB, I’m just going to go grab some lunch in Feudal Japan!”
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Teresa F.
Executive Assistant
Hello! I’m the Executive Assistant to the President and Publisher of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group. I also run both the Instagram and Tumblr pages for Swoon Reads.
A Little Q & A
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
That’s a tie between Remy & Dexter in This Lullaby and Cath & Levi in Fangirl. Both are too close to my heart to possibly choose just one.
Book that everyone should read?
Harry Potter. Whenever I hear someone say they have only seen the movies and have not read the books I die a little inside.
Best advice you've ever been given?
Follow your heart, trust your instincts, and everything will work out just fine.
What do you do on a rainy day?
You can find me curled up in bed with a good book and peppermint tea, or binge-watching shows like Chopped and Say Yes to the Dress.
What's your favorite song?
I can never just pick one, so here are my top three:
Wildflowers by Tom Petty
Crimson and Clover by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts
The Quiet Things That No One Ever Knows by Brand New
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Kelly M.
Associate Manager, Advertising and Promotion
I’m the resident cupcake baker and Pinterester (oh, and Associate Manager of Advertising and Promotion) for Swoon Reads and Mac Kids. I love books, bakeries, long runs, and “literary swag.”
A Little Q & A
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
I have this twisted fascination with fiction’s most dysfunctional couples. So while it might not be exactly the type of answer you were expecting, couples like the de Winters (Rebecca), the Pontelliers (The Awakening), and even The Dunnes (Gone Girl) are some of my favorites to read about.
Most romantic scene you've ever read?
Harry Potter doesn’t always seem particularly romantic, but that moment when Harry walks in after winning the Quidditch match and just kisses Ginny… *swoon*
What do you love about working in publishing?
Most of us are in this because we love books— I feel so lucky that I get to work every day surrounded by people I love who love books as much as I do.
What do you do on a rainy day?
Usually, I gaze longingly out the window while pouting around a bit about how my plans for a long run have been ruined. Then, when I’m tired of that, I remember that snuggling up with a good book or a favorite movie are two excellent alternatives.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
I definitely wish I could fly. I think Eleanor said it best in one of my favorite books, Rainbow Rowell’s Eleanor & Park: “I know it’s not very useful, but... it’s flying.”
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Janea B.
Sales Assistant, Fifth Avenue Trade Sales
Here at Macmillan I assist the VP of Sales with sales analysis, prep and building of sales prior to books being published, and sending out vital sales info to many people within the company. For Swoon Reads, I am a reader and a new member of the Editorial Board. I look forward to discovering new great novels to bring to life on the page! Outside work I read mostly thrillers and YA during my Long Island commute, watch police dramas on TV (Criminal Minds, Hannibal, The Following, Scorpion, Stalker, and so many more!), and bake yummy things.
"Gravitation cannot be held responsible for people falling in love. How on earth can you explain in terms of chemistry and physics so important a biological phenomenon as first love? Put your hand on a stove for a minute and it seems like an hour. Sit with that special girl for an hour and it seems like a minute. That's relativity."
– Albert Einstein
A Little Q & A
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Romeo and Juliet. I can’t help but swoon over their whirlwind romance and the stars of fate that bring them together and drive them apart. Young love is hard enough when you’re not destined to die for one another. But isn’t that love’s point? Find the one you would die for, but hope that you get a lifetime together instead.
If you could be any book character, whom would you choose?
I would absolutely be Tris from Divergent. I so want to be Dauntless! I would love to jump on and off trains, ride the zip line, and feel the rush of fear to overcome and be stronger for it.
If you could spend one day inside any literary world with any literary character, where and who would it be?
One day inside any literary world with any literary character would most certainly not be long enough, but if I one day was all I had, I would want it to be in the world of Harry Potter and I’d spend the day with Luna Lovegood. I recently went to Universal Studios and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter was incredible! I would have given anything to have received a real letter of my own, but my wand finding me at Ollivander’s was enough! I also think Luna is just such a fun character, she’d be a great friend.
If you were stranded on a desert island, who or what would you want for company?
I have always been a huge fan of Tim Burton. I think he has an incredible mind and being stranded on a desert island with him would be an adventure. We would recreate the island in our own image and populate it with crazy characters to occupy all of our time. I’ve always had a secret desire to one day keep his head alive in a jar like they do on the show Futurama, just so I could talk to him all the time! I can imagine that he has very interesting things to say.
Do you have any pets?
I have one kitty cat that I love very much. Her name is Star, her birthday is September 6th (she’s 6 years old!), and she is a long hair/short hair mix calico. When I picked her out as a kitten, it was because one minute she was hanging from the curtains and the next she was sleeping in my arms. Star is very particular about everything. She likes to be pet, but only in a certain way. She will cuddle on my lap, but only if I don’t fidget. She sleeps near enough to me for me to pet her while I fall asleep, but not close enough so she has her own space. And while she is very friendly to everyone, she doesn’t like loud noises and will swat you if you make any. She is a big baby, loves boxes, is a talker, and I wouldn’t have her any other way. My favorite thing about Star is when I pull in the driveway, she peeks out of the curtains to see if it’s me and then meets me at the door.
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Liz O.
Sales Assistant, Merch Sales
25 year-old, Brooklyn resident, sarcasm connoisseur, pop culture junkie, food obsessed. I am on the editorial board for Swoon, binge reading manuscripts about high school romance.
"I fell in love with her courage, her sincerity, and her flaming self-respect. And it's these things I'd believe in, even if the whole world indulged in wild suspicions that she wasn't all she should be. I love her and it is the beginning of everything."
– F. Scott Fitzgerald
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
I was obsessed with Rachel Cohn’s YA novels as a young teen, did a re-read a little while ago and they still hold up.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Working with people who understand fan-girling over not just an author, but an editor who always manages to edit books you become obsessed with.
Best advice you've ever been given?
Life is too short to eat bad food.
What do you do on a rainy day?
Good coffee, good food, bad TV all while never getting out of my pajamas.
What's your favorite song?
House of the Rising Sun by the Animals.
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Emily Hutton
Emily H.
National Accounts Assistant for Macmillan Children's Publishing Group
I am a reader for Swoon Reads. I came to Macmillan in August after getting my master’s in Writing and Publishing from Emerson College in Boston. Before attending graduate school at Emerson, I spent five years teaching English as a foreign language in Rome, Italy.
"She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see."
– Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
Christopher Pike’s Final Friends trilogy, and also anything by Lois Duncan.
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Scarlet and Wolf from The Lunar Chronicles.
Most romantic scene you've ever read?
The most romantic scene I have ever read is definitely the scene in Shadow and Bone where Mal and Alina are alone in the woods, hunting the stag, and they kiss for the first time. He gives her the most romantic speech that totally wins her — and the reader — over!
What do you do on a rainy day?
Read, read, read.
What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
Living in a foreign country for five years — learning the language, making friends, and really carving out a life for myself there.
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Emily P.
Advertising and Promotions Coordinator, MacKids
My name is Emily, I coordinate advertising and promotional materials for MacKids in addition to assisting with the Swoon Reads Pinterest. When I am not doing that, I am either reading, watching Netflix, or cooking new recipes I find on Pinterest (sometimes all three at the same time).
"Each time you happen to me all over again."
– Edith Wharton, The Age of Innocence
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
When I was still in middle school, I read anything by Gail Carson Levine that I could find. I would read one of her Princes Tales on a Saturday morning before even getting out of bed, and then go out and buy a new one I hadn’t read yet.
An author or book that inspired you?
Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli It was the first book I can remember reading that had a female character I was actually interested in reading about despite the fact I didn’t entirely relate to her. Ever since reading Stargirl I have always enjoyed YA novels that are written in first person narrative from the perspective of a boy. My life is the first person narrative from the perspective of a girl anyway, so it’s nice to be in a different headspace for a while.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Getting to work with an awesome group of people who love books as much as I do! As an English Major and life time lover of books, it was a dream come true to start a career in publishing and share the same passions with the people I work with.
What do you do on a rainy day?
Binge watch a show like Friends, The Office, or Gilmore Girls while making soup in my crockpot.
Do you have any pets?
I don’t have pets, and by pets I mean cats, but my parents do. This is my dad’s cat Kashmir (named after the Led Zepplin song) he’s huge and likes to fit himself under a very small child’s chair my dad still has around from when I was little. This is him all sprawled out and being flirty:
cat
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Anna Roberto
Anna R.
Associate Editor, Feiwel & Friends
Hi! I'm an associate editor for Feiwel & Friends. What's that? You just read a contemporary YA that rocked your world? Please allow me to borrow it immediately.
"And no bathroom on earth will make up for marrying a bearded man you hate."
– Dodie Smith, I Capture the Castle
A Little Q & A
First romance novel?
This was in no way my first romantic novel, but it really stayed with me all these years. My copy is so incredibly tattered – and 8 years old! – that I can't even lend it out anymore. I brought it on a car ride to Maine (10 hours each way) when I was in high school, and I read it cover to cover several times over. The Truth about Forever by Sarah Dessen.
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
Down a Dark Hall by Lois Duncan and Blubber by Judy Blume. Loved them when I read as a kid, and I still love and value them now.
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Anne Shirley and Gilbert Blythe (from the Anne of Green Gables series). I mean, duh. Simply providential.
What makes you laugh out loud?
Every episode of 30 Rock ever. All of them.
What do you do on a rainy day?
Usually I’m watching something BBC. My go-to is the Emma miniseries or the Keira Knightley Pride and Prejudice (Matthew MacFadyen is the BEST Darcy).
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Swoon - Michelle Campbell
Michelle C.
Assistant Manager, School & Library Marketing
Hi! I'm Michelle! A graduate of Florida State University, I’m lucky enough to say that I moved to the big city and got the job of my dreams at Macmillan! I love to read, travel, discover new things, go to the beach every chance I get, live music, theater, museums, and so much more!
"The best moments in reading are when you come across something – a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things – which you had thought special and particular to you. And now, here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out, and taken yours."
– Alan Bennett, The History Boys
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
It's the same yesterday as today –– Matilda by Roald Dahl, or anything by him. In fact, I remember thinking I had the same telekinetic powers as Matilda.– I brought it (yes, my power) to school as my show & tell. NO JUDGEMENT, please.
Favorite fictional couple?
Is this really a question? Corey and Topanga! Hands down. You should already know that.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Everything. I love to see an idea nurtured and brought to life. Our publishers, editors, authors, and coworkers are smart, full of energy and ideas, and aren’t afraid to take risks. Working in an environment where I’m constantly learning and growing is important to me and I’m just very thankful to have even a small part of the process.
What do you do on a rainy day?
Jump in puddles.
Do you have any pets?
This is my beautiful Princess Siete. Her friends just call her Siete. She's a very special Hemingway cat with 7 seven toes on each front paw, so she's extra loveable.
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Borana G.
Advertising and Promotion Assistant
I’m the Advertising and Promotion Assistant at MCPG. I’m also a book lover, an aspiring cat owner, and always wearing heels.
"I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! –– When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library."
– Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
Ella Enchanted, The Baby Sitters Club series, and the Harry Potter series.
What do you love about working in publishing?
Constantly discovering and falling in love with new books, authors, and characters.
If you could be any book character, whom would you choose?
Elizabeth Bennett from Pride and Prejudice.
What do you do on a rainy day?
Curl up with a good book and drink hot chocolate (if it’s cold out), or have a movie marathon.
Do you have any pets?
I sadly don’t have a pet, but my sister has a cat who I love so much! His name is Atticus (named after Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird) and he’s playful, fluffy, and adorable.
cat
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Ashley H.
Interior Graphic Designer
I take the manuscripts in unformatted word documents and turn them into the designed and stylized text you see when you open a book and start reading.
"'You could go far and do worse. I think his honesty and willingness will outweigh his lack of gumption.' Scarlett did not answer, for she did not want to be too rude. But to her mind there were few, if any qualities that outweighed gumption. "
– Gone With the Wind
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
George’s Marvelous Medicine, by Roald Dahl and Charlotte’s Web by E.B White.
An author or book that inspired you?
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba.
What do you love about working in publishing?
I love that at the end of the day I know the thing I spent hours and hours working on is sitting on a library bookshelf somewhere, or in a bookstore waiting to be picked up and enjoyed. I love that books contain gateways to new worlds, new ideas and new friends, and that I can be a part of bringing that to readers.
What makes you laugh out loud?
So many things make me laugh! It’s hard to choose. Here’s a few that are guaranteed to get a chuckle from me: witty humor, hamsters (especially ones eating tiny meals on the internet), weird road-side attractions, The Mindy Project, jokes about pizza, and bad puns, to name a few.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
Definitely teleportation so that I could easily go visit all my friends and family that live all over the country and world any time I want.
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Hayley J.
Assistant to Managing Editor
I work across all of the children’s imprints as an assistant to the managing editorial department. For Swoon Reads, I’m on the editorial board and review some of the submissions that come in.
"Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic."
– J.K. Rowling
A Little Q & A
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Ron and Hermione.
Book that everyone should read?
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.
What do you love about working in publishing?
I love that everything with my job has to do with books — specifically children’s books. It’s difficult to have a bad day when you’re surrounded by something so inspiring and meaningful. I can’t imagine doing anything else.
What makes you laugh out loud?
The Office makes me laugh out loud every time I watch it.
What's your idea of fun?
Exploring the city with friends — you can never be bored in New York! There’s always something new to discover.
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JohannaK
Johanna K.
Marketing Associate
I am the Marketing Associate at MCPG, a cat enthusiast, a Taylor Swift superfan, and a pasta/book addict. I love poetry and romance, especially that of the star-crossed and doomed variety. At Swoon, I run the Facebook page and occasionally write blog posts.
"When you kiss me, jaguars lope through my knees."
– from Hummingbird by Diane Ackerman
"But I love you, so who cares? And you love me, so who cares if we’re crazy?"
– Lazy by Margot and the Nuclear So and So's
A Little Q & A
First romance novel?
Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty.
Favorite fictional (book) couple?
Eleanor and Park — their love is big and complicated and overwhelming and beautiful.
An author or book that inspired you?
To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf. Lots of people find it boring, but it completely blew my mind. (I’m a nerd.)
What do you do on a rainy day?
If it’s a weekend, I take rain as a “get out of any responsibilities” card. So usually I read, marathon a good TV show or watch several movies in succession, and if I’m feeling ambitious I’ll cook up some comfort food with my roommate.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?
If I could have a superpower, I would definitely want to be able to teleport! I could hit the beach on my lunch break, and travel anywhere without having to deal with long flights.
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Mary V.
Senior Publicist
I get to read manuscripts submitted to the Swoon Reads site! I love seeing what debut authors come up with.
"'After all this time?' 'Always,' said Snape."
– J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
A Little Q & A
Best moment in your publishing career?
I suppose you can say my favorite moments are when I learn what books I’ll be working on each season. I love finding out what authors I’ll be working closely with and what books I’ll be shouting about from the rooftops.
If you could be any book character, whom would you choose?
Easy, Hermione Granger. Can you tell I grew up in the Harry Potter Generation?
If you could spend one day inside any literary world with any literary character, where and who would it be?
I would spend the day with Frodo Baggins in Hobbiton, after he returns from his journey. I would listen to his stories over first breakfast, second breakfast and (of course) tea.
What's your favorite song?
Long Day by Matchbox Twenty
Do you have any pets?
He lives with my parents, but Popeye Willie is my little Yorkshire Terrier. He is a delightful terror and gets up to all sorts of mischief! Here he is, interrupting my read.
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Christine
Christine Ma
Senior Production Editor
I will be overseeing the copyediting and proofreading of Swoon Reads books, starting with the next season’s titles.
"When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too.”
– Paulo Coelho
A Little Q & A
Favorite YA or NA romance novel or author?
Jennifer E. Smith.
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
When I was young, I was obsessed with the Miss Piggle-Wiggle books, then the Baby-Sitters Club series, and then the Sweet Valley series. I still have them in storage somewhere!
What do you love about working in publishing?
I’m so happy to see that there are so many YA books out now, and part of my job is to read them. If I were told as a kid that I’d end up working in books, I would never have believed it!
What do you do on a rainy day?
Snuggling up with a good book, a cup of tea, and my cat in front of a window.
Do you have any pets?
Everyone in publishing has a cat, right? Here is Fifi! (He’s a boy.) He loves sleeping on my laptop or my stacks of paper.
Fifi
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Kerry N.
Sub-Rights Director
I am so very lucky as we get to license Swoon Reads titles to audio publishers, book clubs, and international publishers all over the globe!
"He is the half part of a blessed man, Left to be finished by such as she; And she a fair divided excellence, Whose fullness of perfection lies in him."
– William Shakespeare
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
I loved Little House on the Prairie as a kid. I also LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the Sweet Valley High series and read every single book in the series as a teenager. Couldn’t get enough!
Best moment in your publishing career?
The first time I was pitching a book that I loved to an international publisher, and they were hanging on every word I said because the passion that I had for the book was infectious. They made an offer not having read the book!
Best advice you've ever been given?
Follow your gut. Whether it’s in love, a career, really any aspect of life. You’re usually right, and if not, another great life lesson learned.
What makes you laugh out loud?
My dog!
What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
Being a good, kind and decent human being I think is my greatest accomplishment. Sounds kind of funny, but I think it’s true!
Tell us something about you that no one else knows.
I took my first hot air balloon ride when I was three years old. I could not see over the side of the basket because it was too tall. My father had and flew a hot air balloon until my early 20s and it was a blast to do on the weekends and during the summer.
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StuartM
Stuart M.
Senior Sales and Publisher Administration Manager
In addition to blogging for Swoon Reads, I work with our field sales organization to continually promote the Swoon Reads name and those titles chosen to be published under the imprint. My role is that of a marketing rep for the imprint as well as a promoter to the retailers.
"Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate."
– William Shakespeare
A Little Q & A
Favorite books to read as a child or teenager?
Favorite books were and in many ways still are, Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House on the Prairie series. This bit of early American history in the form of these stories still captivate me these many years later.
An author or book that inspired you?
One author of nonfiction that inspired me and still does to this day is Rachel Carson. Her early writings (Silent Spring, Under the Sea Wind and others) were a real introduction for me to the decaying state of our planet due to pollution of our air and water supplies and the need to conserve and protect our precious natural resources. Carson was one of the very first 'activists' to write on this subject and has inspired generations of readers and citizens to think globally about our planet.
What do you love about working in publishing
Modern book publishing and all of its genres allows me to share my passion for books and literature with all of those groups with whom I come in contact. That would include other readers, booksellers, librarians, teachers and students who are looking for answers to their own situations through literature. Having been a former retail bookseller myself, nothing gives me more pleasure than putting the right book in a person’s hand and learning of the satisfaction that it has brought to someone.?
What makes you laugh out loud?
I’m not apologizing for this, but any form of slapstick comedy... whether from a classic movie or a current TV show makes me not only laugh out loud, but sometimes snort like a bull... you, know that sound you sometimes make when you are bent over with laughter and are trying to inhale air at the same time! At a dinner party once, many years ago, I actually said something that one of my friend’s thought was so hysterical, that he actually almost had the spaghetti he was eating come out of his nose! This could have turned tragic but fortunately did not. The 15 year old boy inside my aging body is still very much alive and well!
What's your favorite song?
A classic Latin hymn composed by Cesar Franck, called Panis Angelicus (Angelic Bread or Angel Bread) remains my #1 favorite piece, classical or pop, because of it’s humbling beauty and simple message or devotion and honesty and living as humbly as possible. It is a piece that is often hear at mass, wedding receptions and other spiritually enlightening gatherings. When sung properly by a male tenor voice, it moves me to tears, as does Puccini’s O Mio Babbino Caro ( O My Beloved Father)! I’m such a sap! It doesn’t take much for me to turn on the waterworks! Call me a sentimental romantic. Hence my Swoon Reads connection.
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