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Sarah P. Blanchard

Sarah P. Blanchard writes about conflicted people making difficult decisions in impossible situations, sometimes with good outcomes.


Her highly acclaimed 2023 short story collection, Playing Chess with Bulls, features many such narratives. The title story was a finalist for the 2021 Doris Betts Fiction Prize. 

Her new novel, Drawn from Life, introduces a young woman who must confront a powerful antagonist as she seeks the truth of the tragic accident that branded her an accidental killer. 

Follow Sarah on her Amazon author page.

Reviews for Drawn from Life 
"An accomplished debut...A winner." —Prairies Review
"A richly rendered setting...a riveting mystery [and] a gripping narrative of redemption, fortitude, and bravery."   5/5 stars —BookView

A life-changing tragedy. Conflicting memories.

Is she a killer or a victim?


Emma Gillen is haunted by guilt.  Almost a decade after surviving a deadly car crash on a remote Appalachian mountain, she’s held hostage by long-term damage to her body and no recollection of that tragic event. Then her volatile cousin Lucy—a possible witness to the crash—returns, needing money and bringing chaos. Emma must decide if she should bargain with her untrustworthy cousin to uncover their shared past.


All bargains carry risk. As Lucy grows more desperate and greedy, Emma suspects there’s more at stake than just money.  Struggling with shame, night terrors, and her own unreliable memory, Emma accepts help from a compassionate detective. But the choice remains hers alone: Can Emma find the strength to free herself from her cousin’s destructive power, or will Lucy bring everything crashing down? 


With vivid characters, dark themes and a high-stakes mystery, Drawn from Life is a riveting psychological suspense story, a compelling tale of a young woman’s redemption and courage. Fans of Kelly Braffet and Gillian Flynn will love Sarah Blanchard's Drawn from Life.

Paperback and ebook available April 1 on all platforms. Check with your local bookstore and pre-order!


Sarah Blanchard ebook.jpg

New Release - April 1, 2024

Read the first two chapters from Drawn from Life:


Thursday, November 18, 2015 - 2:00 a.m.


      “Really, Em. You’re being such a drama queen, all that moaning and groaning. It’s not like you’re dying. You saw the X-rays, it’s just a little crack.” Lucy risked a glance away from the wet road to frown at her cousin, huddled beneath a blanket in the passenger seat.

     “And your shirt’s buttoned crooked,” she added. “You look like a sad-ass refugee.”

     A gust of wind rocked the car...


[Continue reading: Click here to view/download the PDF of chapters One and Two.]

Sarah Blanchard’s Playing Chess with Bulls is a surprising and eclectic collection of well-executed literary fiction....Highly recommend. — five stars

"Surprising and eclectic" Amazon

Reviews: Playing Chess with Bulls story collection (December 2023)

 Had me roped in from the first sentence, and then I couldn't turn pages fast enough. As a poet, love Blanchard's language, as a reader, smitten by the vivid images. — five stars

"Masterful storytelling" Amazon

"The Bus Driver" is a terrific story from start to finish. I saw it, felt it, loved everything about it. The voice is spot on."

Reader at Sixfold


Upcoming Appearances

March 28, 2024 5:30 pm- Hendersonville Public Library, Hendersonville NC - NCWN Open Mic reading

March 31, 2024 7:00 pm - DRAWN FROM LIFE Book Launch, Weaverville Community Center, 60 Lakeside Dr, Weaverville NC - reading, Q&A, book sales & signings

April 1, 2024  6:00 pm - DRAWN FROM LIFE Book Launch #2, Blue Mountain Pizza, 55 N. Main St, Weaverville NC - reading, Q&A, book sales & signings. 

For RSVP and info, email:  drawnfromlife47 @

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