Job Title: VP of Book Buying & Promotions
On your nightstand now: Too many books to list here (seriously, it’s out of control).
Favorite book when I was a child: 1 book? I was not a 1 book child…When I was really little, I coveted these 2 oversize Golden Books at the bookstore near my house: Whales and Dinosaurs. When I finally got them, I read them cover to cover and tortured my family with repeated recitations. Artie and the Princess by Marjorie Torrey was a favorite title that I could read only when visiting my grandparents. It became a valued heirloom throughout our extended family. Marguerite Henry, C.S. Lewis, Ursula LeGuin, and Judy Blume all played important roles in my reading life.
My top five authors: This is impossible. William Faulkner, Sherman Alexie, Louise Erdrich, Sy Montgomery, Ursula LeGuin. I could go on for pages.
Book I’ve faked reading: Way too many of the assignments in my AP English class. I can’t remember what they all were now, and I must have been a good faker because my grades were good. But, I recall lots of guessing at answers from the context of discussions, and skimming paragraphs in class. Oops!
Book I am an evangelist for: That depends on the day you ask me. It’s definitely one of my favorite parts of working at Hudson. There are so many fabulous books out there that deserve a bigger readership. Right this minute, I am keen on spreading the word about The Dog Stars by Peter Heller, How to Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran and Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter.
Book you’ve bought for the cover: Possession by A.S. Byatt. Ok I am dating myself, but I remember this cover really stood out in the bookstore when it came out in hardcover. And I loved the book too!
Book that changed my life: In the American Grain by William Carlos Williams. I read this as part of a college seminar, which has to be one of the best ways to read any book: presented in context and explored through discussion. It was a revelation in its beautiful, unclassifiable nature, a trait that describes many of my favorite books. It is poetry, history, novel, and remarkably evocative of the author and his time and place.
Book I most want to read again for the first time: Jane Eyre
Book I’d take with me to a desert island: Moby Dick
Song that has played the most on my MP3 player: This is really hard too. I have almost as much music as books. Ok I’m too lazy to look up the answer, but I think it might be a Ben Harper song.
Best way to spend a weekend: Riding horses with my daughter, playing music with my husband, sitting on the beach watching dolphins. Yes – all in one week-end. I’m a little crazy that way. 
Favorite vacation destination: Hawaii
Window or Aisle: Aisle. Don’t fence me in!
What is the first giveaway that a book is going to be good: It doesn’t feel like anything I have read before.
Best TV or Movie adaptation of a book: maybe it’s the phrasing of the question, but the first one that comes to mind is Adaptation, from The Orchid Thief.

Sara's Recent Reviews

Set largely amidst the onset of the AIDS epidemic in Chicago, The Great Believers covers a tragic subject, but Makkai’s style is so weightless - Fitzgerald himself comes to mind, for which the book is named, and whose quote serves as epigraph – that reading it is genuinely a (bittersweet) pleasure. It so clearly celebrates the rewards of opening ourselves up to love, even as it amplifies the risks. Makkai draws direct parallels between the Chicago scene in the 80s to that of Paris in the first years of the last century, to Fitzgerald’s own peers, of which he said, “A strongly individual generation sprouts most readily from a time of stress and emergency.” Decimated through war and disease, his was a group whose great hope, whose great disillusionment, fueled art that still inspires us a hundred years later. Despite Fitzgerald’s self-aware observation, it is hard to recognize when we might be living in a golden age, and harder still to come to terms with the sacrifice through which it might have been forged. Makkai handles all of these ideas with grace and insight through characters I couldn’t help but love.
There There is thrilling to read. Its brilliance just blew me away. I read half in one sitting with goosebumps up and down my arms wondering how Orange could sustain the energy, the incantatory power, the chorus of distinct and diverse voices, the dizzying breadth of references, the metaphorical and allegorical power of every choice of plot, character, style. It's a universe of a book, which Sherman Alexie calls "the first book to capture what it means to be an Urban Indian," celebrating and mourning the legacy and future of all that entails. But it's also about every one of us: individuals, yet members of myriad groups whether we identify as such or not. It’s about how we transform each other and ourselves, how we are all ultimately related. Like one of Orange’s characters says of Motown, There There carries plenty of sadness and heartbreak, but it sure does dance while doing so. My only complaint is that it was over too soon. I wanted more.

Read all of Sara's reviews

Manhattan Beach cover image
Young Jane Young cover image
Sing, Unburied, Sing cover image
The Mars Room cover image
The Electric Woman  cover image
The Leavers cover image
Killers of the Flower Moon  cover image
The Overstory cover image
The Changeling cover image
The House of Broken Angels cover image
Educated cover image
An American Marriage cover image
The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley cover image
The Largesse of the Sea Maiden cover image
Celine cover image
They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us cover image
By Gaslight cover image
Blood at the Root cover image
Moonglow cover image
Here I Am cover image
White Sands cover image
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LaRose cover image
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The Heart cover image
Sudden Death cover image
Elon Musk  cover image
Ways to Disappear cover image
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Voices in the Ocean cover image
Undermajordomo Minor cover image
Barbarian Days cover image
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Hold Still cover image
So You've Been Publicly Shamed cover image
H is for Hawk  cover image
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The Tusk That Did the Damage cover image
The Visitors cover image
The Cultural Lives of Whales and Dolphins cover image
The Wake cover image
The Work cover image
The Bone Clocks cover image
The Hundred-Year House cover image
Deep cover image
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Life After Life cover image
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Gold cover image
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Song Reader cover image
Life of Pi  cover image
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How to Be a Woman cover image
The Flight of Gemma Hardy  cover image
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Turn of Mind cover image
The Tragedy of Arthur cover image
Townie cover image
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The Tiger's Wife cover image
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The Betrayal cover image
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The Wave cover image
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The Whale cover image
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Incendiary cover image
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War Dances cover image
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