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Publisher's Summary

Part memoir, part guidebook, and part social history, For Small Creatures Such as We is the first book from the daughter of Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan - a luminous exploration of Earth's marvels that require no faith in order to be believed.

"What is the meaning of life? Sagan finds its meaning everywhere - with her family, around the world, and especially among the stars of the cosmos. Read her work; you'll have a deeper appreciation for your every step, every bite, and every breath." (Bill Nye)

Sasha Sagan was raised by secular parents, the astronomer Carl Sagan and the writer and producer Ann Druyan. They taught her that the natural world and vast cosmos are full of profound beauty, that science reveals truths more wondrous than any myth or fable. 

When Sagan herself became a mother, she began her own hunt for the natural phenomena behind our most treasured occasions - from births to deaths, holidays to weddings, anniversaries, and more - growing these roots into a new set of rituals for her young daughter that honor the joy and significance of each experience without relying on religious framework. 

As Sagan shares these rituals, For Small Creatures Such as We becomes a moving tribute to a father, a newborn daughter, a marriage, and the natural world - a celebration of life itself, and the power of our families and beliefs to bring us together.

©2019 Sasha Sagan (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

“How often have you asked yourself: What is the meaning of life? Sasha Sagan finds its meaning everywhere - with her family, around the world, and especially among the stars of the cosmos. Read her work; you’ll have a deeper appreciation for your every step, every bite, and every breath.” (Bill Nye, author of Everything All At Once

“She’s Carl Sagan’s daughter, and it shows.... Her style seems to inherit something from that grand master of scientific prose poetry. While never for a moment departing from secular physicalism, she makes a lyrical case for ritual, marking out the rhythms of life from birth to death. A charming book, ringing with the joy of existence.” (Richard Dawkins, author of An Appetite for Wonder and The Greatest Show on Earth

“Sagan encourages us, as grown-up children of this world, to create for ourselves and each other previously unimagined life-honoring and life-enhancing celebrations and rites of passage more attuned to our own deepest truths and heart's desires. And on this path she introduces us to and vividly portrays five generations of her extraordinary family.... A lucent, lovingly written, and joyous book." (Jonathan Cott, author of There’s A Mystery There

What listeners say about For Small Creatures Such as We

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A Wonderful Pearl

Sasha really opened herself up. Her love for her Father came through, and really strengthened the channel of connectedness we all have. You can feel her passions through her voice. This is a great listen during a drive, or walk where you can appreciate the natural world around you. Truly a labor of love. And Love is what it's all about!

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Beautiful, honest, thoughtful...

Beautiful, honest, thoughtful... Sasha Sagan's For Small Creatures Such as We is a fascinating read for anybody who looks for spirituality in everyday life.

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Great Point of View

I really like the author reads of the book. Her points of view on life, love and kids is one not to be missed. I'm only a couple chapters in but can't wait to finish it.

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A Candle in the Dark

A heartfelt reminder about the wonders of life beautifully told by the author. I felt I was on my own personal voyage around the Sun, seeking meaning and purpose in being alive. It left me with a appreciation of the grandeur of the cosmos. Hopeful. Grateful...for life is precious. Whether you are secular or religious or spiritual or something in between this book is a celebration of all that is or was or ever will be.

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Great and Inspiring Listen

I truly enjoyed listening and relating to the wonderfully collected thoughts of Sasha Sagan. Thank you

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Absolutely beautiful!

I enjoyed this book SO MUCH that I finished it in just a few days. Absolutely beautiful, moving, inspiring.... thank you Sasha Sagan!

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Transcendent

I've never cried from happiness and sadness so much and so hopefully. Thank you Sasha, for this incredible gift of a book. My daughter with be one month old tomorrow - I found this book just in time. Wishing you loving warmth in the vastness, ~Dan

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Secular spirituality from Carl Sagan's daughter

When I read non-fiction, I stick to science books. This isn't a science book. Sasha grew up with Carl Sagan for a father. This book is a testament to her love for him. It's also a biography of her life, chronicling her secular Judaism, marriage, giving birth, starting a book club, etc. I normally find biographies boring, but Sasha managed to keep my attention with her cosmic perspective. And we have her late father to thank for that. As well as her mother, Ann Druyan! Sasha's easy going secular spirituality makes this book important. Her bravery and joyfulness are contagious. Her curiosity and skepticism give me hope for humanity.

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Exceptional as expected

A must read for anyone who loves the Sagan ethos. Sasha's book is moving and philosophical in a familiar, comforting way. I look forward to any future books she may write. I'll most definitely read this one again.

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A worthwhile invitation to explore ritual

Sasha illustrates a compelling message about ritual and tradition through the intimate retelling of personal narratives from the lives of her family and herself. As someone who is as secular as one can be, I expected this book to challenge my attitudes toward religious ritual. Quickly, however, Sagan drew me into her exploration of the subject in a way which felt like a friendly invitation. That said, if I were to describe this work’s effect on the reader in a word, it would be “enriching.” I now find myself excited to explore personal rituals and optimistic about discovering greater wonder in the process. Just as Carl Sagan’s work has consistently inspired and increased my awe in the understanding of our natural world, so too does For Small Creatures Such as We.