Meet Team Jacaranda | Jazzmine Breary, COO

1.) Who are you and for how long have you been at Jacaranda Books?

Hey! I am Jazzmine Breary, COO. I have been at Jacaranda for 11 wonderful years.

2.) What drew you to the publishing industry?

Finding the industry was almost accidental, but I always wanted to work with literature. I was a certified bookworm at school and initially I wanted to be a writer.  I was looking for work while at university and found a job editing website articles for Holland Park Press. That opened my eyes to publishing as an industry and after digging in a bit further I fell in love with the idea that I could make a career of sharing my love of literature with people and connecting writers to new readers, and readers to amazing new books. I have never looked back.

3.) What is your favourite part of your job?

My favourite part is the absolutely incredible people that I have met particularly as a result of my time at Jacaranda. We have the most incredible women in our team, our authors are inspirational and awe-inspiring and I have been able to work with brilliant people through our partnerships. We have an amazing community of readers and every Jacaranda gathering, be it a team meeting or a launch party, is an example of what it means to experience love, sisterhood and brotherhood, and friendship in a safe, supportive space, which is so important for Black women.

4.) Jacaranda book’s motto is ‘bigger than books’ and part of that is our clear love for music - what does your current playlist sound like?

  1. I'm Kissing You by Des'ree
  2. Nobody’s Supposed to Be here by Deborah Cox
  3. End of the Road by Boyz II Men
  4. Take Me to a Dream by Kelly Price
  5. Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill by Lauryn Hill
  6. Leila by Pitingo and Sarah Firaj
  7. To Zion by Lauryn Hill
  8. Untold Stories by Buju Banton
  9. How Is It? by Mark Antonio B
  10. Music by Leela James

5.) A book opener that you cannot get out of your head is?

"When did I lose you?

I can tell I’ve lost you by the way you glance up at me from that fucking phone in your hands. You look over at me like I’m another one of your boring clients, someone who’s talking too much and taking up too much of your precious time. I smile back at you, not saying a word, because I’m not another one of your boring clients, David."

While We Were Burning by Sara Koffi

6.) The author of your lifetime is?

Working in this industry I have been blessed to discover so many incredible writers, including some that we publish at Jacaranda. Seeing the talent that exists today, as well as reading writers of the past, I don’t know that there is just one author of my lifetime. As an infamously passionate crime fiction fan, however, I will mention Allan Folsom: his books are responsible for my love of crime fiction, and changed my reading preferences completely.

7.) Your Jacaranda Holiday reading list look like? 

  1. While We Were Burning by Sara Koffi
  2. From Pasta to Pigfoot by Frances Mensah Williams
  3. The Book of Harlan by Bernice L. McFadden