Skip to content Skip to Menu KAL Accessibility Statement

The Editor: How Publishing Legend Judith Jones Shaped Culture in America

Write a review
| Ask a question
by Sara B. Franklin
Regular price $30.00

Shipping calculated at checkout

This item is in stock and will ship promptly.

For a limited time we have copies signed by Sara B. Franklin.

It’s difficult to overstate the breadth of the late Judith Jones’s influence on American literary culture in the latter half of the twentieth century and onward. In the food world, she was the editor of Julia Child and James Beard, Madhur Jaffrey and Edna Lewis, among many others. Outside of that sphere, she was the editorial assistant who discovered and advocated for the publication of Anne Frank’s diary, and the editor who guided the likes of Sylvia Plath, Anne Tyler, and John Updike.

This detailed, eye-opening biography draws on conversations with Jones herself, access to her correspondence and private papers, and interviews with family members, colleagues, and many of the authors with whom Jones worked. Their words give the book an important immediacy.

Author Sara B. Franklin, who earlier edited Edna Lewis: At the Table with an American Icon, stays keenly attentive to the broader American culture against which Jones was working, often to the editor’s quiet, eloquent frustration. Whether she resented the consolidation of the publishing industry, chafed at restrictions placed on her by executives at Alfred A. Knopf, the publisher where she worked for more than fifty-five years, or took daring risks on books like Updike’s sexually-charged 1968 novel Couples, she was not content with things as they had always been done.

The portrait which emerges is one that makes sense of Jones’s own words in a 2001 essay, “I believe that some of us are genetically predisposed to love food. But even though one may possess a fair share of their genes, it takes a moment of awakening to fully realize their potential, particularly if one was brought up, as I was, to look upon a passion for food as an embarrassing weakness to be curbed–like being oversexed.”


Published: May 28, 2024

Shopping Cart