An illustration of a heavily lip-glossed, business suit-wearing brunette who might resemble Bachmann at first glance is featured on the book’s cover.
In a phone interview, Sager, 39, explained to ITK what initially drew him to the House member: “I became really interested in [Bachmann] as kind of this woman in power, as a cultural phenomenon, and how much she was so polarizing for people … I felt like she’s a really enigmatic person, and there’s something more to it than politics.”
The scribe — who has never met Bachmann — says while he doesn’t necessarily agree with her political views, he “respects her." Sager told us, “I’m a novelist, so I thought it would be a really interesting inspiration for the character in a romance novel to explore some of those feelings and cultural contradictions people feel.”
In quotes about the book featured on the publisher’s website, author Lynne Tillman calls Fires of Siberia “a flaming ode to erotic lyricism.” She adds of the Bachmann character, “She’s Sarah Palin, Machiavelli, and a philosopher no one has ever heard of. Fires is so bizarre and witty, real yet unbelievable and compelling, it hurts. Read it on the beach.”
A writer from The Atlantic Wire is also quoted as saying, “Perhaps after reading Fires of Siberia [Michele Bachmann] will consider running for president again.”
Bachmann’s office did not return ITK’s request for comment.