Born and raised in New York City, Julie Barer began her career as a bookseller at Shakespeare & Company. Her first job in publishing was at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates, and she started her own agency, Barer Literary, in 2004. Julie represents a variety of writers across a literary spectrum, with a special emphasis on fiction. Her client's work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Best American Short Stories, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper's, Tin House, Granta and various other publications. Her clients have been finalists for the National Book Award, the National Book Critics' Circle Award, the Man Booker Prize, and the Impac Dublin Literary Award, and have received numerous prizes including the PEN/Hemingway Award, the Barnes & Noble Discover Award, the Kirkus Prize, the Dylan Thomas Prize, the Rome Prize, the Los Angeles Times First Book Award, and the Orange Prize; as well as grants from The Fulbright Fellowship, The National Endowment of the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation. Novels by several of her clients have graced the cover of The New York Times Book Review, and have appeared on national and international bestseller lists. Julie is particularly interested in representing a diversity of voices from around the world, and books by her clients have been set in Sri Lanka, Prague, Kenya, Paris, Papua New Guinea, Newfoundland, Jamaica, ancient Greece, outer space, and even the future.
With almost 20 years of experience in the business and a focus on strong collaborative working relationships with her authors, Faye Bender represents fiction for readers aged 8 to adult. Her authors have won numerous awards and honors, including the Newbery Medal, the Schneider Family Book Award, the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, the Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award, the Indies Choice Book of the Year Award, the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, the Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award, and the International Latino Book Award, and have been finalists for the National Book Award and the Impac Dublin Literary Award. Her clients' books have been #1 New York Times bestsellers, New York Times Book Review Notable Books, and selected for Best Books of the Year lists by Publishers Weekly, The Washington Post, School Library Journal, NPR, the Wall Street Journal, the American Library Association, and the New York Public Library, among others.
Faye is always eager to discover authors with a strong narrative voice and an eye for imaginative storytelling, and she works with her authors for the length and breadth of their careers. Born and raised in Denver, Faye lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two children.
Brettne Bloom began her publishing career as an intern at The Atlantic Monthly in 1999. She became an agent at Kneerim, Williams & Bloom in 2000, where she was a partner until June 2015. Over the years, Brettne has cultivated an eclectic list of talented authors, from New York Times bestselling novelists to award-winning historians, journalists and biographers. Her clients have been finalists for the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the National Book Critics' Circle Award, the PEN New England Award, the First Novel Prize and the Impac Dublin Literary Award, among others.
Brettne handles writers of literary and commercial fiction, history, biography, memoir, psychology, and a handful of young adult titles. She also represents a number of cookbook and lifestyle writers. She was born and raised in Houston, Texas and lives in New York with her husband and two daughters. A voracious reader all of her life, Brettne is especially drawn to distinct voices, investigative journalism and unique perspectives on historical events; she also loves European and American history, love stories and tales of unexpected friendship.
Elisabeth Weed began her publishing career at Curtis Brown in 1999. In 2007, Elisabeth opened her own agency, Weed Literary, where she began focusing primarily on upmarket fiction. She is especially attracted to plot-driven novels with a sense of place, and loves discovering new voices. She’s on the hunt for literary thrillers and crime novels and has a soft spot for historical fiction. Elisabeth is committed to working with authors not just on individual titles, but for the long term, and she is as committed to her authors as they are to her. Her clients' novels have appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists as well as international bestseller lists around the globe.
Elisabeth, her husband and two children, recently left the city for the suburbs, where she can cook in a normal-sized kitchen, something she loves almost as much as reading a great novel in bed.
Rebecca Stead, a graduate of NYU School of Law, joins The Book Group as a literary agent. She has written four novels for young people, including the bestsellers When You Reach Me, winner of the 2010 Newbery Medal, and Liar & Spy, which received the 2013 Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize. Rebecca looks forward to being both a collaborator in the creative process and an advocate for great books and their writers. She is particularly interested in innovative forms, diverse voices, and open-hearted fiction for middle graders and young adults.
Nicole Cunningham joined The Book Group after working as the Manager of Author Relations at a book discovery website. Prior to that, she was an assistant in the literary department of ICM Partners. Nicole graduated from New York University with a degree in English and American literature and a minor in Social and Cultural Analysis. She also received a certification in Publishing from NYU’s School of Professional Studies. Nicole is looking for smart, creative novels that bend the rules of fiction and push the boundaries of what a novel can be. She’s drawn to literary fiction that comes to life through vivid natural settings or keenly observed characters, and she’s interested in working with authors who write from within their own diverse experiences. She loves well-researched and entertaining nonfiction about feminism, the environment, and other social issues.
Dana Murphy joined The Book Group in 2012 to provide administrative and creative support to Brettne Bloom and Elisabeth Weed. Dana worked collaboratively with Brettne and Elisabeth as their assistant, began building her own list in 2015 and was promoted to Agent in 2017. Prior to working at The Book Group, Dana attended New York University and graduated with a BFA in Cinema Studies and a minor in sociology. Dana is on the hunt for fiction that feels surprising and immersive, whether that manifests in a strong sense of place, diverse voices or masterful plotting, as well as smart narrative nonfiction/essays about pop culture, social issues, feminism, diversity, film and television, music, and comedy.
Hallie Schaeffer joined The Book Group after working at Princeton University Press on the Natural History and History of Science lists. She studied English literature and mathematics at Bowdoin College and attended the Columbia Publishing Course after graduating. Hallie reads omnivorously, but her favorite books tend to be speculative or science fiction with epic narratives and strong world-building. She also enjoys memoir, cultural history, and books about the ocean.