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agent : felice@artanddecoagency.com
Felice Laverne
Art + Deco Agency

As a literary agent, I'm particularly interested in contemporary literary, upmarket and commercial fiction as well as select fantasy novels. I gravitate toward fiction that explores the subtleties and complexities of language and symbolism while still being firmly rooted in modern or futuristic living, whether character-driven or plot-driven. I’m also looking for select non-fiction with a unique viewpoint by authors with a well-developed media platform, particularly in the areas of foodie culture, cookbooks, incisive commentary on marginalized cultures and pop culture essay collections. I’m looking for art on a page and fresh perspectives, writing that says “NO!” to clichés and formulaic tropes, that offers an energetic voice and a deep sense of place.

I have a soft spot for brainy novels set on college campuses à la The Secret History by Donna Tartt, The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker and Loner by Teddy Wayne; clever ‘whodunits’ set on estates like The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton and the 2019 film Knives Out; highbrow fiction written around characters of color such as The Emperor of Ocean Park by Stephen L. Carter and A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara; contemporary Southern Gothic fiction featuring multicultural characters; novels featuring multicultural Millennials in high-powered workplace situations; and witty and satirical upmarket women’s fiction that reveals a nasty side to a major industry (i.e. fashion, film, etc.) as in The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger. It’s a big plus if a novel can introduce me to a new world, make me think differently about one I already know, or tap into the cultural climate. I’m also especially interested in finding and uplifting writers from marginalized communities, particularly writers of color, and any book that offers sharp social commentary interwoven brilliantly throughout the narrative will keep me up all night reading.

As for my formal background, I hold a bachelor’s degree in English, Creative Writing from Georgia State University and a master’s degree in Publishing from Kingston University in London, England. There, I specialized in Diversity and Inclusion in the Digital Age of Publishing, which comes in handy when working on racially charged or diversity-centric projects and book ideas. I partner with HarperCollins as a Sensitivity Reader in that capacity. I was the literary agent and first editor for J.J. Hensley’s debut fiction novel, Resolve, and have edited phenomenal big-name books such as Zerlina Maxwell’s The End of White Politics and Kelly de Vos' Day Zero, among so many others. I’m also the author of my own book, The Other Americans: A Novel, with more books on the horizon.

I bring a unique perspective to books and the industry, having fulfilled many different roles (Own Voices author, editor, author coach and agent). I understand the writer's creative perspective as well as how to champion and guide their careers. I'm always on the hunt for writers with fearless, bold voices who will make an impact and engage in the larger cultural conversation.


GENRES & SPECIALTIES
General fiction, Lifestyle, Cookbooks, African-American, Pop Culture
BEST-KNOWN PROJECTS
Editor for Zerlina Maxwell’s The End of White Politics. Agent for J.J. Hensley's Resolve.