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  • Writer's pictureMax Sinsheimer

SOLD! Ask Marion! (by Marion Nestle, in conversation with Kerry Trueman)

The last two books I did with Marion, Soda Politics (as her editor at OUP) and Unsavory Truth (as her agent), were deep dives into major food system issues. Soda Politics mapped the hardball and softball tactics the soft drink industry employs to sell their product to an increasingly obese world, and Unsavory Truth revealed how the food industry corrupts scientific research by paying for studies that are more about marketing than science. These books showcased Marion's incredible research skills; they are forceful and persuasive because she builds irrefutable arguments from an astonishing body of research.

Ask Marion! is a very different sort of book. Imagine you are at a dinner party with Marion, the Nutrition Goddess (as Bon Appétit recently described her), and you can ask her anything you want about your personal food choices (does breakfast really matter? low-carb vs. low-fat? what's an ok amount of daily sugar?), issues in our wider food system (how did junk food become a Red State Blue State debate? can we legislate a leaner America?), or the health of the planet and all its citizens (can the free market feed the world? is agribiz the solution to our global food crisis?). That's more or less what we are going for in a short and approachable book.

(The picture of Marion that appeared in Bon Appétit's October 2018 article "Nutrition Goddess Marion Nestle on the One Thing She’d Change About How We Eat")

The concept comes from a series of interviews Marion did in the 2000s with journalist and environmental advocate Kerry Trueman on her blog Eating Liberally, eventually picked up by the Huffington Post. Marion so enjoyed answering Kerry's thoughtful questions that she ended up doing more than 50 of these interviews, published under the heading "Let's Ask Marion!" For this book Marion and Kerry will team up again, with Kerry posing many new questions and Marion answering them and revising old responses.

One last note: Ask Marion! will reunite Marion with her beloved editor at University of California Press, Kate Marshall. Congrats to Marion, Kerry, and Kate!

Here's the deal memo on Publishers Marketplace:

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