Birne joins PEW Literary with Faber deal

Birne joins PEW Literary with Faber deal

Eleanor Birne has joined PEW Literary as associate agent this month, moving from David Godwin Associates, and has already done a deal with Faber on Amber Medland’s debut novel about mental health and the impact of the #metoo movement.

Birne, now associate agent at PEW, sold world rights to Faber editor Emmie Francis for author Amber Medland's debut novel Wild Pets. It will be published in spring 2021.

The debut was described by Birnie as “a smart, funny, very modern novel that explores the lives of a group of 20-somethings navigating contemporary life in London and New York”. She said: “Its very current themes include mental health challenges and the impact of #metoo on the lives of young women.

“Amber Medland is a real talent and a rising star of the future. I’m delighted to have placed this, her first novel, with Faber and Faber, who are incredibly excited about her and her work.”

Birnie joined David Godwin Associates last September, and focused on literary fiction and non-fiction authors. Before starting work as a literary agent, Birne was publishing director at John Murray. She is a regular contributor to the London Review of Books and is in the final stages of finishing work on a PhD, The Women Who Built Virago.

Birne’s clients include Mary-Kay Wilmers, editor of the London Review of Books and author, as well as Adam Smyth, Professor of English Literature and History of the Book at Balliol College, Oxford, whose The Book: A Story in Thirteen Extraordinary Lives will soon go on submission. Birne is also just about to submit 34 Patients by former Observer journalist-turned-doctor, Tom Templeton, an account of the experiences of his patients, ranging from an unborn baby to a dying 103-year-old woman.

Commenting on the move, Birne said: “I’m hugely excited to be working with Patrick Walsh, Margaret Halton, John Ash and Doug Young at PEW Literary. It’s an incredibly supportive, experienced and energetic team and I’m delighted to be part of it. I feel it’s the ideal home for me and my writers.”

Patrick Walsh, who formed the agency in 2016, said: “Eleanor’s editorial eye is legendary, and her experience as a publisher and now as an agent – selling Amber Medland’s brilliant first novel to Faber this week – speaks volumes for her talents. I’ve always admired her, and we love working together.”

She can be contacted at eleanor@pewliterary.com.