Sarah was born and bred in Lancaster in the North West of England. Despite having lived all over Great Britain, she is still a Northerner at heart. She did her undergraduate degree at Clare College, University of Cambridge, completing it in English Literature despite starting it in Philosophy. She managed to combine these two loves in a Masters in Philosophy and Literature at the University of Warwick which she completed in 1999. She then spent a year in London, working in publishing and spending her lunch hours in the book shops on Charing Cross Road. That was enough to convince her that she wanted to be the one writing the books, not editing them, so back to University she went. She spent four years in Brighton completing her doctorate, only then to enter the limbo land of post-doctoral unemployment. Just as she’d reached the conclusion that her only option was to retrain as a chef, she landed her first post as Lecturer in Contemporary Literature in the School of English at the University of St Andrews. She moved up the ladder to Senior Lecturer there in 2012, and took up her current post as University Lecturer in Literature and Film in the Faculty of English at the University of Cambridge in 2014.
Sarah is a feminist critic and theorist specialising in contemporary British and North American literature and film. In her current research she is interested in the intersections between science, literature, and film. She is working on her third monograph, Feminist Science Fiction Film, a book that seeks to establish the history, present and possible futures of the genre, and to theorise what ‘the science fictional’ is, and what it can do. She is the author of The Palimpsest: Literature, Criticism, Theory (2007) and Deconstruction, Feminism, Film (2018). She is the editor of David Mitchell: Critical Essays (2011) and co-editor of Maggie Gee: Critical Essays (2015). Chair (Elect) of the British Association for Contemporary Literary Studies, Sarah is also General Editor of the book series Gylphi Contemporary Writers: Critical Essays.
In addition to her academic work, since 2012 Sarah has been developing a parallel but complementary career as a radio broadcaster. She was a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Thinker in 2013 and now has her own documentary series – Literary Pursuits – on BBC Radio 3 and a mini-series – Close Reading – on BBC Radio 4’s Open Book programme. She presents and appears regularly on BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio 4.
Sarah lives in Cambridge with her husband and two young children. She lives the everyday pressures of being a parent and a professional, and is politically committed to the feminist cause of producing professional and domestic environments that enable women to combine pursuing a successful career with motherhood.