My Works

Seven Years of Grace: The Inspired Mission of Achsa Sprague
Achsa Sprague - (1827-1862) Vermont poet, social activist, spirit lecturer... and sister to Celia Sprague Steen who moved to Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin to teach school in 1854. Historical fiction told from Celia's point-of-view, drawn from Achsa's actual diary and hundreds of letters and personal writings archived at the Vermont Historical Society. During her lifetime, Achsa Sprague overcame a debilitating illness to become a well-known lecturer and traveled alone, from New York west to Chicago, Milwaukee and further south, campaigning for woman's rights, abolition of slavery and the tenets of Spiritualism -- which also promoted a promiscuous doctrine of Free Love, which she opposed. Despite her best intentions, Achsa eventually found herself involved in a deep and passionate affair with a married man and their letters are at the heart of this book.

The Waters of Star Lake, a novel
Natalie Waters revisits her family's cabin near Star Lake, is introduced to the local timberwolves and witnesses hunting for bear. Despite her best intentions, she succumbs to Ginger's invitations for adventure. A sequel to Star Lake Saloon & Housekeeping Cottages but it's not necessary to read them in order.

H. H. Bennett, Photographer: His American Landscape
A vastly revised biography of my much earlier "Pioneer Photographer" (1979), including an abundance of newly discovered Bennett photographs, an enhanced biography and a detailed photographic history of the Kilbourn (Wisconsin Dells) photographer whose work hangs in the Museum of Modern Art and Library of Congress. Published by the University of Wisconsin Press,2010 and Finalist for Midwest Book Award.

Night Sisters, a novel
Three girls -- Nell, Polly and Sharon, grow up in Little Wolf. When Nell Grendon visits the Wocanaga Spiritual Camp she finds herself becoming a spirit-medium! When she begins to channel the mischevious spirit of an old radio star known as "The Woman of 1,000 Voices," her troubles multiply and the laughs increase.

Christine Wicker, author of Lily Dale: The True Story of the Town that Talks to the Dead, says "Sara Rath's portrayal of mediumship's humorous moments is laugh-out-loud funny. She captures a side of Spiritualism that few outsiders are aware of and that no story about it can be complete without."
Also available on Kindle.

Star Lake Saloon and Housekeeping Cottages: a novel
Terrace Books - University of Wisconsin Press: September, 2005.

“With a wicked sense of humor, Rath's work exudes a practical and earthy optimism...Often hilarious, and always engaging."-- Trudy Lewis, University of Missouri–Columbia.
Also available on Kindle.

The Complete Pig
Voyageur Press (2000)
Leslie Cross Nonfiction Award, Council for Wisconsin Writers, 2000. An affectionate and eccentric collection of entertaining information re: Pigs!

The Complete Cow
Voyageur Press (1998) -- A global view of the cow as icon; light-hearted yet serious history of cows of the world with beautiful full-color illustrations.

About Cows
Northword Press (1987); Voyageur Press (2000) -- 60,000 copies sold internationally; an affectionately humorous look at the Mother of the Human Race.

Early works: Pioneer Photographer; Easy Going Guide to Madison & Dane County
Pioneer Photographer: Wisconsin's H. H. Bennett, Tamarack Press (1979) - My firsts real book: a biography of Henry Hamilton Bennett, 19th century landscape photographer from Wisconsin Dells.
Award of Merit, Wisconsin Historical Society.

Easy Going Guide to Madison & Dane County has been long out of print, but it was a fun book with lots of historical details and amusing trivia. Written before word-processors were readily available, it was a true cut&paste effort. Once in a while copies can be found on used book sites.

Poetry Collections
Dancing With a Cowboy, Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters (1991) -- Fourth collection of poems, praised by critics for "sensory and sensual exuberance...clarity, intensity and accessibility."

Remembering the Wilderness, Northword Press (1984). Named the 1984 Banta Award Book by the Wisconsin Library Association for the finest literary achievement of the year by a Wisconsin author.

The Cosmic Virgin, Wisconsin House (1973) - Poems

Whatever Happened to Fats Domino, & Other Poems, Wisconsin House (1971)