Ryan Jacobs
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Ryan Jacobs
Ryan Jacobs
Alma materNorthwestern University
OccupationWriter, author, magazine editor

Ryan Jacobs (born 1989) is an American author, writer,[1][2][3][4] and magazine editor.[5][6][7] He is best known for his reporting[8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17] in The Atlantic [18], his editing at Pacific Standard,[19] and his critically acclaimed first book, The Truffle Underground.

Early life

Jacobs was born in Los Angeles and graduated from Loyola High School, where he worked as an editor on the student newspaper, The Loyalist. He matriculated to Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, where he studied magazine journalism.[20]


After graduating summa cum laude from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism,[21] Jacobs began his career as a reporter at a small Pulitzer Prize-winning weekly, the Point Reyes Light, in Marin County, California.[22] His stint there led to stops at a number of San Francisco-based publications, including Sierra magazine, the short-lived Bay Citizen, and Mother Jones[23], where he worked closely with fellow Medill alum Clara Jeffrey.[20]

After Mother Jones, he joined The Atlantic's global channel, where he covered international crime and other foreign affairs from Washington, D.C., under Olga Khazan and J.J. Gould. His reporting for The Atlantic was cited and featured by the New York Times,[24]Esquire,[25] Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's 'Q' radio program, and author Naomi Klein. He departed for an editing position at Pacific Standard.

In his first year at Pacific Standard, Jacobs oversaw the Quick Studies section of the magazine's website, which won a Folio magazine Eddie award. After two years as an associate and senior editor overseeing digital expansion, he was appointed deputy editor, second-in-command to editor-in-chief, Nicholas Jackson. Together, they reorganized the editorial team and redesigned the magazine, leading it to a National Magazine Award in 2017.[20] During Jacobs' tenure at Pacific Standard, stories he has edited have won a Mirror Award,[26] helped launch major books,[27][28][29][30] influenced network television, and received mention in the Best American Essays anthology.[31] He continues to work as deputy editor from the magazine's headquarters in Santa Barbara, where he lives with his wife and daughter.


His first book, The Truffle Underground, edited by Francis Lam and published by the Clarkson Potter imprint of Penguin Random House in June 2019, focuses on crime in the international truffle trade.[32][33][34][35] BuzzFeed listed the book as one of the most anticipated titles of the year.[36] "Fans of weird true crime will eat it up," the editors wrote. Publishers Weekly called the book a "fascinating work." "This deeply researched and eye-opening account of the lengths people will go for wealth, gratification, and a taste of the prized fungus will captivate readers," the reviewer concluded.[37] In a starred review, Booklist labeled it a "remarkable" feat of reporting that brought the industry to "vivid life."[38] Kirkus Reviews announced it as "an entertaining, revealing book debut." "A deftly crafted tale of obsessions and true crime in the culinary world," the reviewer wrote.[39] Thrillist placed the book on its list of most anticipated summer reads, calling it "a smart, revealing expose." "True crime nerds, this is the unsuspecting story you've been waiting for."[40] It was named a best book of the summer by Outside magazine[41] and a non-fiction "page-turner" by Fortune magazine.[42]

Jacobs and the book also received coverage on NPR's Marketplace[43], WNYC's "All of It With Alison Stewart,"[44] the New York Times[45], the New York Post[46], Eater[47], the San Francisco Chronicle[48], BookPage[49], Crime Reads[50], and the Chicago Review of Books[51], among others.


  1. ^ "Best of Q: Why do so many Icelanders believe in elves?". CBC Radio. Retrieved .
  2. ^ Eveleth, Rose. "Icelanders Protest a Road That Would Disturb Fairies". Smithsonian. Retrieved .
  3. ^ "Carbon trading is a con man's dream | REDD-Monitor". Retrieved .
  4. ^ Klein, Naomi (September 16, 2014). This Changes Everything: Capitalism Vs. The Climate. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 9781451697384.
  5. ^ Owens, Simon (May 5, 2016). "Can Pacific Standard thrive in a post-clickbait era? - Thoughts on Journalism". Medium. Retrieved .
  6. ^ Munroe, Fred. "Pacific Standard". Retrieved .
  7. ^ "RD Recap: New Hires at Elle.com; Changes at Pacific Standard". www.adweek.com. Retrieved .
  8. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "The Forest Mafia: How Scammers Steal Millions Through Carbon Markets". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  9. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "A Lone Bandit and the Mystery of France's Greatest Diamond Heist". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  10. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "Saudi Arabia's War on Witchcraft". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  11. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "Liberia's Top Presidential Escort Busted for Smuggling Pot With Official Jeep". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  12. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "Why So Many Icelanders Still Believe in Invisible Elves". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  13. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "Israel and BuzzFeed: When Government PR Goes Viral". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  14. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "The Strange Sexual Quirk of Filipino Seafarers". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  15. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "A Lost Scottish Island, George Orwell, and the Future of Maps". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  16. ^ Jacobs, Ryan (September 29, 2014). "Searching for a Man Named Penis". Pacific Standard. Retrieved .
  17. ^ Jacobs, Ryan (July 11, 2014). "What Is the World's Actual Lowest Hanging Fruit?". Pacific Standard. Retrieved .
  18. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "Ryan Jacobs". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  19. ^ Standard, Pacific (July 27, 2016). "Meet the Team". Pacific Standard. Retrieved .
  20. ^ a b c "Inside Pacific Standard - Medill - Northwestern University". www.medill.northwestern.edu. Retrieved .
  21. ^ "Inside Pacific Standard - Medill - Northwestern University". www.medill.northwestern.edu. Retrieved .
  22. ^ "Search". The Point Reyes Light. Retrieved .
  23. ^ "Where Are They Now? | Mother Jones". www.motherjones.com. Retrieved .
  24. ^ Marks, Gene. "Today in Small Business: Target Goes Small". You're the Boss Blog. Retrieved .
  25. ^ "Long Reads Of The Week". Esquire. 2013-11-02. Retrieved .
  26. ^ "Newhouse School Announces 2018 Mirror Awards Finalists". SU News. Retrieved .
  27. ^ Dusenbery, Maya (June 20, 2017). Doing Harm: The Truth About How Bad Medicine and Lazy Science Leave Women Dismissed, Misdiagnosed, and Sick. Place of publication not identified: HarperOne. ISBN 9780062470805.
  28. ^ Dusenbery, Maya (March 23, 2015). "Is Medicine's Gender Bias Killing Young Women?". Pacific Standard. Retrieved .
  29. ^ "Write Pitches, Get Money (And Bylines and Books and Advice)". Alana Massey. Retrieved .
  30. ^ Massey, Alana (February 7, 2017). All the Lives I Want: Essays About My Best Friends Who Happen to Be Famous Strangers. Grand Central Publishing. ISBN 9781455565887.
  31. ^ "Alexis Coe on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved .
  32. ^ Jacobs, Ryan. "The Dark Side of the Truffle Trade". The Atlantic. Retrieved .
  33. ^ "The Truffle Underground by Ryan Jacobs | PenguinRandomHouse.com". PenguinRandomhouse.com. Retrieved .
  34. ^ Jacobs, Ryan (2019-06-04). The Truffle Underground: A Tale of Mystery, Mayhem, and Manipulation in the Shadowy Market of the World's Most Expensive Fungus. S.l.: Clarkson Potter. ISBN 9780451495693.
  35. ^ "Ryan Jacobs on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved .
  36. ^ "66 Books Coming In 2019 That You'll Want To Keep On Your Radar". BuzzFeed News. Retrieved .
  37. ^ "The Truffle Underground: A Tale of Mystery, Mayhem and Manipulation In the Shadowy Market of the Most Expensive Fungus". www.publishersweekly.com. Retrieved .
  38. ^ than 200, Booklist Online: More; Librarians, 000 Book Reviews for; Groups, Book; Association, book lovers-from the trusted experts at the American Library. Truffle Underground: A Tale of Mystery, Mayhem, and Manipulation in the Shadowy Market of the World's Most Expensive Fungus, by Ryan Jacobs | Booklist Online.
  39. ^ THE TRUFFLE UNDERGROUND by Ryan Jacobs | Kirkus Reviews.
  40. ^ Entertainment, Thrillist (2019-05-15). "33 Books We Can't Wait to Read This Summer". Thrillist. Retrieved .
  41. ^ Editors, The (2019-06-27). "We Couldn't Put Down These 5 Summer Reads". Outside Online. Retrieved .
  42. ^ "9 Nonfiction Page-Turners You Should Bring to the Beach This Summer". Fortune. Retrieved .
  43. ^ "Death, theft and darkness in the search for rare truffles". Marketplace. 2019-06-28. Retrieved .
  44. ^ "The Trouble with Truffles | All Of It". WNYC. Retrieved .
  45. ^ Sifton, Sam (2019-06-05). "What to Cook Tonight". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved .
  46. ^ Eber, Hailey (2019-06-01). "How an insane demand for truffles is leading to sabotage, fraud and death". New York Post. Retrieved .
  47. ^ Jacobs, Ryan (2019-05-28). "Inside the Exceptionally Shady World of Truffle Fraud". Eater. Retrieved .
  48. ^ May 29, Nick Marino; June 3, 2019 Updated:; 2019; Pm, 6:02. "Review: Poisoned dogs, intrigue and a taste of coveted fungus in 'Truffle Underground'". Datebook | San Francisco Arts & Entertainment Guide. Retrieved .CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  49. ^ "The Truffle Underground by Ryan Jacobs - Review | BookPage". BookPage.com. Retrieved .
  50. ^ "June's Best True Crime Books - Bank Robbers, Cyber Criminals, and the Murder of Biggie Smalls". CrimeReads. 2019-06-18. Retrieved .
  51. ^ Staff, Editorial (2019-06-03). "The Best New Books of June 2019". Chicago Review of Books. Retrieved .

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