Plume was founded in 1970 as the trade paperback imprint of New American Library. In its early history, Plume focused primarily on nonfiction titles, publishing approximately 35 titles per year. In the early 1980s, as trade paperbacks were rapidly becoming the format of choice among a large segment of book buyers, Plume began expanding its reach, and became recognized as one of the pre-eminent trade paperback imprints. The 1980’s saw Plume make its mark with a number of major bestsellers, including Toni Morrison’s Tar Baby, Erica Jong‘s Fanny, Russell Baker‘s Growing Up, and Gloria Steinem’s Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions, among others. Now, in 2014, Plume is publishing 85 to 100 titles a year, and its backlist currently encompasses approximately 700 titles.

Throughout its history, Plume has been dedicated to voices previously neglected by mainstream publishing. The pioneering program in multicultural literature, which began with Toni Morrison and Jamaica Kincaid, has expanded to include ground-breaking works by Latino, African-American, and Asian-American authors. Plume publishes such notable writers as Julia Alvarez, Bernice McFadden (Sugar), Gish Jen, and August Wilson (Fences), among many others. Plume was also a pioneer in gay publishing, with such classics as Edmund White‘s A Boy’s Own Story and Andrew Holleran’s Dancer from the Dance, which built the foundation for an exceptional gay and lesbian publishing program that is still going strong with Judy Shepard’s The Meaning of Matthew and Dan Savage and Terry Miller’s ground-breaking It Gets Better.

Plume’s acclaimed fiction list boasts many bestselling and prize-winning authors, including Dorothy Allison (Bastard out of Carolina), David Benioff (City of Thieves), Tracy Chevalier (including The Girl with the Pearl Earring and The Last Runaway), Jennifer Chiaverini (Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker), Lev Grossman (The Magicians, The Magician King and The Magician’s Land), Sarah Jio (Blackberry Winter, The Violets of March, Goodnight June), Joyce Carol Oates (We Were the Mulvaneys), Jonathan Tropper (This is Where I Leave You, One Last Thing Before I Go), and Jussi Adler-Olson’s Department Q Novels.

Bestselling, quality, narrative and prescriptive nonfiction is another area in which Plume takes special pride, publishing Eckert Tolle (A New Earth), Jill Bolte Taylor (My Stroke of Insight), Daniel Levitin (This is Your Brain on Music), Neil Young (Waging Heavy Peace), Damien Echols (Life After Death) and Jeff Bridges and Bernie Glassman (The Dude and the Zen Master).

Plume’s dynamic backlist is nothing if not diverse, including Ayn Rand (The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged), titles by the major twentieth-century writer and thinker, George Orwell (Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-Four), Stephen King (volumes 1-4 of The Dark Tower series) Anne Rice (writing as A.N. Roquelaure, The Sleeping Beauty Trilogy) and Pat Barker’s Booker Prize winning The Ghost Road (part of her Regeneration Trilogy).

With Todd Wilbur‘s Top Secret Recipes series, to Putting Food By and Total Juicing, the cookbook list offers both the traditional and the practical. The business and personal finance list is likewise a mix of the classic and the cutting-edge, featuring everything from Jason Kelly‘s Neatest Little Guide to Investing to John PerkinsConfessions of an Economic Hit Man to Neffinger and Kohut’s Compelling People.

Plume’s bestselling diet and health category leads with Robert Lustig (Fat Chance) Gretchen Reynolds (The First 20 Minutes) Dr. David Burns (The Feeling Good Handbook) Dr. Andrew Weil (You Can’t Afford to Get Sick) and Mira Kirshenbaum (Too Good to Leave, Too Bad to Stay).

While Plume publishes bestselling reprints in trade paperback, it also has a dynamic and bestselling original publishing program, with recent bestsellers in nonfiction as varied as James Wesley Rawles’s How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It,’s You Might Be a Zombie and Other Bad News and The De-Text Book, and Hugh Murphy’s T-Rex Trying, as well as Going Somewhere by Brian Benson and Jolie Kerr’s My Boyfriend Barfed in My Handbag…And Other Things You can’t Ask Martha.

Plume’s original fiction program is equally as varied and dynamic with fine novels by authors including Jason Porter (Why Are You So Sad?) and New York Times Bestsellers by Sarah Jio (The Violets of March, Blackberry Winter, Goodnight June) and Natasha Solomons (The House at Tyneford). Plume has also become the leader in the new publishing category of survival fiction, with recent original novels by G. Michael Hopf  (The End, The Long Road and Sanctuary) and A. American (including Going Home, Surviving Home and Escaping Home).

Plume’s long-term commitment to writers and readers is stronger than ever. The publishing program continues to be vigorous and exciting—the best new trade paperback and eBooks in each of these categories will be added to Plume’s distinguished list.

Meet Plume

Clare Ferraro


Clare Ferraro joined Penguin Group (USA) in 1997 and is the President of Plume as well as the Viking Press and Hudson Street Press. Before then she held a succession of editorial, publicity, and management positions over nineteen years at the Ballantine Publishing Group, including Publisher, Editor-and-Chief and Publicity Director.

Philip Budnick

Phil Budnick

Editorial Director

Philip Budnick became Editorial Director of Plume in 2011.  In addition to managing the Plume publishing list, he has acquired several books including: Ed Stafford’s Walking the Amazon and Naked and Marooned as well as Throw the Damn Ball by R.D. Rosen. Before coming to Plume Budnick was a key member of the Penguin sales team for 17 years. Formerly National Account Sales Manager for Borders Group, Inc., he played an important part in the success of numerous titles from Viking, Dutton, Gotham, Portfolio and Sentinel. Budnick started his career working for Booksellers in Cleveland. He joined Penguin Group (USA) in 1994 as a Field Representative for the Midwest Region and subsequently twice named “Penguin Rep of the Year”. In 1999 Mr. Budnick was promoted to National Account Sales Manager.

For any media inquiries please contact Courtney Nobile, Director of Publicity,

Plume Newsroom

July 24, 2014

New York Times bestseller and Pen Faulkner Award Winner Karen Joy Fowler is one of four American authors included on the list for the 2014 Man Booker Prize for her novel We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves. This is the first year in which American authors have been eligible for the award. A shortlist will be […]

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May 2, 2014

The Blue Rider Press edition of This Town by Mark Leibovich was a New York Times bestseller last summer and hailed by the New York Times as a “spot on” portrayal of the American political landscape. With this week’s publication of Plume’s trade paperback edition, Washington, DC “bus king” advertising for the book is rolling around the streets of the nation’s capital […]

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April 16, 2014

The 2014 Guggenheim Fellowships, given on the basis of “impressive achievements in the past and exceptional promise for future accomplishment,” have been announced and 8 of the grants were awarded to Penguin Group (USA) authors: David George Haskell, The Forest Unseen: A Year’s Watch in Nature (Viking, 3/12; Penguin, 3/13) Hari Kunzru, Transmission (Dutton, 5/04; […]

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