Westminster English Professor to Hold Book Signing on Campus 

Faculty & Staff 

Deb BreneganWestminster Professor of English Debra Brenegan will hold a book discussion and signing from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on April 26 at the Westminster Bookstore for her historical novel, Shame the Devil.

Shame the Devil is a novel based on the life and works of 19th century American novelist, journalist and feminist, Fanny Fern (1811-1872). 

“I’m excited for the opportunity to share my love of the remarkable Fanny Fern with the public,” says Brenegan.  “I look forward to introducing people to one of the nation’s oft-forgotten writers and to discussing how and why her writing was so popular in its era and why that writing still resonates today.”

Fern was the most popular, highest paid and most published writer of her era and she outsold Harriet Beecher Stowe, won the respect of Nathaniel Hawthorne and served as a literary mentor to Walt Whitman.

Her personal life was a roller coaster, rising to fame and fortune from the depths of poverty.  She was a widow who escaped an abusive second marriage, wrote one of the country’s first pre-nuptial agreements, married a third man who was eleven years her junior and served as a 19th century “Oprah” to her hundreds of thousands of fans.

Copies of the novel, published by SUNY Press, will be available at the Bookstore for purchase at $24.95.

Shame the Devil“Debra Brenegan has written a masterful work of literary genius that is not only historically accurate, but also a work of fiction that is extremely readable,” says Five Alarm Book Review.  “Brenegan had my full attention within the first few pages and thereafter, there was never a moment that I wasn’t anxiously awaiting each turn of the page.”

Professor Brenegan teaches English and Women’s Studies at Westminster.  She has received a Ragdale residency for her fiction and was a recent finalist for the John Gardner Memorial Fiction Prize, The Cincinnati Review’s Schiff Prose Prize and the Crab Creek Review Fiction Prize.  Her work has appeared or will appear soon in publications such as The Southern Women’s Review, The Laurel Review, The Cimarron Review and Tampa Review.

She holds a Ph.D. in English/Creative Writing from The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Professor Brenegan is currently working on another novel set in Missouri and a short story collection.

Those interested can watch a book trailer of Shame the Devil at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sPCM07ZjsWY