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Heidi Komlofske-Rojek
President & CEO

When I met Ross back in May 2008, he told me of this crazy idea he had to create the perfect book review publication — something he (as a voracious book reader) couldn’t find on the market. I figured it would be the perfect combination of skill sets: Ross’s connection with the publishing industry and my 20 years of graphic design and marketing experience.

Having come from the world of static design for companies (advertising, marketing collateral, website), I rolled up my sleeves and taught myself how to do what I call “fluid design” in InDesign. What I can tell you is that there were a lot of tears when it came down to the deadline wire for getting those first issues to the press. It’s been a learning process for both of us — mostly Ross learning that, no, you can’t just move a book review from one page to the other an hour before the file is due to the printer, because it will create a hole.

Fast-forward to 6 years later, and we’ve managed to create a company that is not only surviving this horrible economy, but expanding into other cities. We went from having a virtual office in Sacramento (and working from home) to moving into a real, big-boy office in Midtown Sacramento in August 2011. (I still miss working in my pajamas, though!)

What is it that I do at City Book Review, you might ask? Well, it’s certainly not much to do with the books, which people find quite odd. I remember very early on after starting the business, I had to fill out a questionnaire for an article that a local newspaper was writing on Sacramento Book Review. Ross was reviewing my answers before I sent the file back, and said “You cannot say that your favorite book is The Da Vinci Code — you can’t tell that to anyone!”  So, here I am, confessing my book sin to everyone here. I am not the literary one of this partnership. I handle more of the organization of the publicists and communications to them and our reviewers. Of course, I’m the one who’s fingerprints is all over the company, as far as design, marketing, and of course, the publications. THAT’S what I do best.

You can reach me by email or at 855-741-8810.
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Ross Rojek

I’ve been a reader since before I can remember. From growing up in a family of teachers to skipping school to spend extra time at the library, books have always been a part of my life. For almost 15 years, I retailed comics and books in Midtown and Downtown Sacramento, and in 2008, we launched the Sacramento Book Review. Together, we created a new model of book review publications while the traditional newspapers downsized or canceled their coverage of books. Since then, we started publishing San Francisco Book Review and licensing to other cities.

I am the main contact for all-things-books here at the company — from requesting which books we’d like from the catalogs, maintaining the book database, to helping to decide contents of each publication issue.

You can reach me by email or at 855-741-8810.

Steph_Rodriguez_150Steph Rodriguez
Associate Editor

As a young girl, I used to staple several sheets of computer paper together lacing each page with a few handwritten sentences until slowly stories started to form. One tale in particular casts my little brother as the main character, who mischievously drinks a blue liquid called “Animal Potion No. 9” one sunny afternoon (I had an affinity for the ‘60s British-pop band, The Searchers). He suddenly transforms into a seal that later swims in the ocean and saves a drowning surfer before returning home safely.

With this particular memory still rich as ever, I know that I found an honest love for the written word early in life. Whether it was a book about a hungry, hungry caterpillar, an in depth novel that described a troubled writer, or even a silly story I crafted at a more innocent age, literature grants its reader a creative timeout from the busy realities in which we all subscribe. I’m intrigued by that.

My passion will always be words. I’m proud to be an award-winning journalist with regularly published work in the Sacramento News & Review and Submerge magazine. I’m also a new mommy! My son, Elliot, was born January 26, 2015, and his bookshelf is already cluttered. My interests mirror the variety of articles I’ve written: from book reviews, music and lifestyle features, to news and environmental pieces. I truly admire anyone who creates a body of work and then shares it with the masses.

As associate editor of San Francisco Book Review, I plan to use the myriad skills I’ve gained throughout my professional and personal experiences to bring a fun and new perspective to the team.

You can reach me by email or at 855-741-8810.

Christopher Hayden
Editorial Assistant

I attended CSU Sacramento where I got my BA in English (concentrated in Creative Writing), and a passion for writing. I work in the book room, where I connect books to reviewers—constantly learn more about the book industry than I thought existed, and enjoy a daily dose of Christmas; unwrapping piles of books each day. When I’m not in the office, I fill my days with writing, music, and gaming.

You can reach me by email or at 855-741-8810.

faith_150Faith Lewis
Editorial Assistant

I’ve spent most of my life with a book in one hand and a pen in the other. In high school, I was Editor in Chief of the school newspaper for three years and made leaps and bounds in my writing ability. I quickly went on to write for my local paper, first as an intern and then as a staff writer. I currently attend Sacramento State University, where I am majoring in English. As an avid reader and writer, I’ve always known my love for the written word would carry me to the publishing industry.

As editorial assistant for San Francisco Book Review, I am responsible for ordering books, communicating with publicists, and generally staying on top of the trends of the literary world. I hope to use my love of reading to bring to light new books with great potential.

You can reach me by email or at 855-741-8810.

Perri ThawPerri Thaw
Editorial Assistant

I’m currently a Freshman at CK McClatchy High School, and work at San Francisco Book Review every day after school. My duties include listing books in a database, keeping the library of books for reviewers organized, and any miscellaneous assistance I can provide to the staff in the office.

My curriculum in school leans heavily to the sciences programs, because I would like to become a Veterinarian.  I’m currently taking molecular biology and trying hard not to blow up the lab. I’m also studying French and would someday love to visit Paris.


Joseph Arellano
Contributing Editor

I am a Contributing Editor for San Francisco Book Review (SFBR), and a Column Coordinator for the Portland Book Review (PBR). I began writing reviews, of music, rather than books, while attending the University of the Pacific (UOP); there, I wrote reviews for The Pacifican student paper and for the campus radio station, KUOP-FM. I went on to receive a Communication Arts degree from UOP and a law degree from the University of Southern California.

I have written book reviews for SFBR, PBR, San Antonio Book Review, the Tulsa Book Review, Blogcritics, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, and an east coast-based online book review publication. I have maintained my own book review site, Joseph’s Reviews – recommended by the Midwest Review of Books, since June of 2009. I also write music and entertainment reviews, and conduct author and musician interviews, for Blogcritics and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

I live in Elk Grove, CA, with my wife Ruta and Sasha, the Russian Blue princess cat.

erin_dunbar_150Erin Dunbar
Copy Editor

If it involves literature, or storytelling of any kind, I’m interested. I’m a published academic and scholar, a college English teacher, an editor, and a writer. I’ve built my entire education and career goals around the written word and creativity, so when I saw the chance to copy edit for the San Francisco Book Review, I jumped at it. It is a plus that I mostly edit reviews by children, as that is one literary area in which I have less experience. It goes well with my little assortment of jobs that are directly related to my interests; I generally don’t do anything I don’t enjoy, and I like to have options. Other than work, I write, read, watch films, collect books and films obsessively, blog, and a few other geeky and nerdy things.


lauren_harrison_150Lauren Harrison
Copy Editor

A life-long lover of the written word, I’ve always put reading, writing, and editing at the center of my work. After spending seven years as an editor at Ulysses Press, an independent publisher in Berkeley, California, I relocated to the Sacramento area to explore new opportunities editing books and beyond. For me, copy editing for the San Francisco Book Review is the ideal blend of publishing and reading, the perfect way to stay on top of trends. When I’m not making words right, I can usually be found trail running, rock climbing, or loafing around at home with my devastatingly handsome cat, Henry.


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