One feels for Betsy Lerner's writers. Oh, sure, Lerner must be a fabulous agent. But too bad for them: In gaining her as an agent, they lost her as an editor. How rare and wonderful it must have been to have such an advocate, advisor, and, yes, admirer so firmly ensconced in publisher territory (at various times, Houghton Mifflin, Ballantine, Simon & Schuster, and Doubleday). In The Forest for the Trees, Lerner reflects on writing and publishing from an editor's point of view. There are so many books by writers and agents promising to disclose what editors really want; here, finally, is one straight from the source. Like all experienced editors, Lerner has seen writers at their best, and at their worst. "Like shrinks," she says, editors "have a privileged and exclusive view into a writer's psyche, from the ecstasy of acquisition to the agony of the remainder table."