The Resource Sarah Jane, James Sallis

Sarah Jane, James Sallis

Label
Sarah Jane
Title
Sarah Jane
Statement of responsibility
James Sallis
Creator
Author
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Sarah Jane Pullman is a good cop with a complicated past. From her small-town chicken-farming roots through her runaway adolescence, court-ordered Army stint, ill-advised marriage and years slinging scrambled eggs over greasy spoon griddles, Sarah Jane unfolds her life story, a parable about memory, atonement, and finding shape in chaos. Her life takes an unexpected turn when she is named the de facto sheriff of a rural town, investigating the mysterious disappearance of the sheriff whose shoes she's filling--and the even more mysterious realities of the life he was hiding from his own colleagues and closest friends. This kaleidoscopic character study sparkles in every dark and bright detail--a virtuoso work by a master of both the noir and the tender aspects of human nature
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Character
Award
  • Booklist Editors' Choice, 2019.
  • Library Journal Best Books, 2019.
Review
  • /* Starred Review */ Like Willnot (2016), Sallis' previous novel, this quietly powerful blend of noir and character study finds both despair and great tenderness in the daily lives of ordinary people. ""All stories are ghost stories,"" Sarah Jane Pullman, acting sheriff in the small town of Farr, somewhere in the Southwest, tells us, ""about things lost, people, memories, home, passion, youth, about things struggling to be seen, to be accepted, by the living."" As Sarah Jane makes her rounds—visiting the sick, sorting out the various petty crimes that plague the small town, and musing over the disappearance of her friend and mentor, the former sheriff—she circles around the edges of some of those ghost stories, professing to have little to offer the aggrieved but always delivering much more than she thinks. We also learn gradually about her own story, the people, the passion, and the things lost: an abuse-filled childhood, some traumatic experiences in the Gulf War, a stint as a cook in various diners, a lost child. There is crime here, too, and all variety of sadness, both in the past and in the present, but, as in Willnot, it comes in short bursts, forever coloring the dailiness of living but never quite subsuming it. Understanding that dailiness, the pain of it but also the flashes of connection with others, is the real subject of Sallis' work. ""Words just won't hold it,"" Sarah Jane says of her own attempts to grasp the lives around her, but Sallis' words hold plenty. -- Bill Ott (Reviewed 10/15/2019) (Booklist, vol 116, number 4, p32)
  • /* Starred Review */ Sarah Jane Pullman, the narrator of this hypnotic, meticulously crafted crime novel from Sallis (Drive), has become the acting sheriff of Farr, a rural southwestern town, following the disappearance of her predecessor and mentor, Sheriff Cal Phillips. Sarah’s combat experience in the Gulf War and her heightened perception of human nature have made her a natural for law enforcement, but her life up until this point has followed anything but a linear route. Amid her search for the missing Phillips, Sarah fills in her past. After fleeing from her small Southern town at 17, Sarah hit the road, and a bit of trouble led to her court-ordered stint in the military. After her discharge, Sarah spent years adrift, finding work as an itinerant cook in faceless diners and shelters, moving through a string of relationships (including one with a violent cop), getting a college degree, losing a child, improvising a life, moving on when things got complicated. An insightful character study of one woman’s reckoning with her own demons, this is also a powerful look at contemporary America. Sallis is writing at the top of his game. Agent: Vicky Bijur, Vicky Bijur Literary. (Oct.)
			 --Staff (Reviewed 08/26/2019) (Publishers Weekly, vol 266, issue 34, p)
  • /* Starred Review */ Sarah Jane Pullman narrates her story, which starts with her growing up "from good hillbilly stock" in the South, then leaving home at 16 and falling in with a group of hippies, getting arrested and sentenced to jail or the army, choosing the latter, and serving in the Mideast. An explosion kills a friend and sends her home. She marries an abusive cop and leaves him. She lives with another cop, who is killed, then Sarah Jane's military service, tragedies, and life experience garner her a job in the sheriff's department of a small town, Farr. When her mentor disappears one night, Sarah Jane becomes acting sheriff and searches for the man she replaced. She uncovers glimpses of a man who admits he made mistakes when he came home with PTSD. Then her own past comes calling, in the forms of an FBI agent and a cop from New Mexico. Accidents and rumors dog Sarah Jane, who claims she never did all the things they claimed she did. VERDICT Sallis (Drive) has a quiet way of narrating a powerful story of accidents and death. The lyrical language and ambiguous ending is reminiscent of the best of Craig Johnson's "Longmire" stories. --Lesa Holstine (Reviewed 10/01/2019) (Library Journal, vol 144, issue 9, p68)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10805060
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorDate
1944-
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Sallis, James
Dewey number
813/.6
Index
no index present
Literary form
novels
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Policewomen
  • Sheriffs
  • Missing persons
  • Small cities
  • Southern States
  • Griffin, Lew (Fictitious character)
Target audience
adult
Label
Sarah Jane, James Sallis
Instantiates
Publication
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
on1083687249
Dimensions
21 cm
Extent
207 pages
Isbn
9781641290807
Lccn
2019016070
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
(OCoLC)1083687249
Label
Sarah Jane, James Sallis
Publication
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
on1083687249
Dimensions
21 cm
Extent
207 pages
Isbn
9781641290807
Lccn
2019016070
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
(OCoLC)1083687249

Library Locations

    • Central LibraryBorrow it
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    • Southeast BranchBorrow it
      5803 Nuckols Crossing Rd., Austin, TX, 78744, US
      30.1876256 -97.7419319
    • Twin Oaks BranchBorrow it
      1800 S. Fifth St., Austin, TX, 78704, US
      30.2486884 -97.76239749999999
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