Copyright ©2017 by Mary E. Carter
I, Sarah Steinway A Novel
Sarah Steinway survives a catastrophic flood by moving into her treehouse located on the northern shoreline of the San Francisco Bay. Sarah, aged seventy-five, observes from her perch a rise in sea level that engulfs the entire landscape for as far as she can see. With snark and pluck, she survives in her treehouse for five years. She records the flood, narrates her survival, and leavens her story with gusts of biting humor. Somewhat sheepishly as a secular Jew, Sarah turns for comfort to Torah. Instead of finding solace, she engages in tart argumentation with God, raising her fists, shouting the eternal Jewish question: ‘Why me?’

“An utterly original imagining of a post-apocalyptic world, lightly

using the tropes of dystopian and disaster fiction while depending

on ingenuity and emotional depth to carry the story.”

—Quarter-Finalist Publishers Weekly BookLife Prize “Carter’s captivating, vividly imagined tale unfolds with terrifying beauty as protagonist Sarah Steinway grapples with survival in a future climate change disaster. Carter’s novel is an utterly original imagining of a post-apocalyptic world, lightly using the tropes of dystopian and disaster fiction while depending on ingenuity and emotional depth to carry the story. Savvy cultural references bring an immediacy and freshness to the text.” —Publishers Weekly  BookLife Prize Critic’s Report

Imaginative technique of Midrash (homiletic expansion on

the primary text) to make her points.

“Apocalyptic novels may not be your cup of tea (or glass of Chateau Lafitte in the case

of this book’s eponymous character), but I, Sarah Steinway is yet another example of

excellent, witty, and thought-provoking writing by Mary E. Carter.  Water featured

prominently in her previous work, A Non-Swimmer Considers Her Mikvah, and

Carter returns to water, this time of the flood variety, in her latest novel.  Our heroine is

quite a character and knows just how to use the imaginative technique of Midrash

(homiletic expansion on the primary text) to make her points from a Jewish perspective. 

And while Sarah spends the bulk of her time alone in a treehouse, we are eventually

introduced to a pair of “out-of-this-world” rabbis.  Each chapter of this book cites a passage

from the classic ethical Jewish treatise, Pirke Avot, so I suggest you drink in Carter’s words

thirstily (Pirke Avot 1:4) and put on your galoshes for a wild ride with Sarah Steinway.”

—Rabbi Jack Shlachter, Judaism for Your Nuclear Family,  physicsrabbi@gmail.com – www.physicsrabbi.com “Despite being self-declaredly secular, the very vernacular of Sarah’s impassioned arguments with God place her squarely in a long line of Jews shaking their fists at the disputed heavens.” —Faber Academy Reader $15.50 ISBN 978-0-692-98524-3 Paperback 212 pages Published by Tovah Miriam Gershom Available 2018 from Ingram or from Amazon.com
TOVAH MIRIAM
Mary E. Carter Author