Profile: Mary Kay McBrayer

Mary Kay is a belly-dancer, horror enthusiast, sideshow lover, prose writer, Christian, and literature professor from south of Atlanta. Her true crime novel, America’s First Female Serial Killer: Jane Toppan and the Making of a Monster is available for pre-order, and you can hear her analysis (and jokes) about scary movies on the podcast she co-founded, Everything Trying to Kill You.

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Most Recently Published Work (as of May 2020)

For readers who are fascinated by how serial killers are made. This book is for listeners of true crime podcasts and readers of both fiction and true crime nonfiction. It is for watchers of television shows like Deadly Women and Mindhunter, who are fascinated by how killers are made. It’s for self-conscious feminists, Americans trying to bootstrap themselves into success, and anyone who loves a vigilante beatdown, especially one gone off the rails.

America’s first female serial killer was not always a killer. America’s First Female Serial Killer novelizes the true story of first-generation Irish-American nurse Jane Toppan, born as Honora Kelley. Although all the facts are intact, books about her life and her crimes are all facts and no story. Jane Toppan was absolutely a monster, but she did not start out that way.

Making of a serial killer. When Jane was a young child, her father abandoned her and her sister to the Boston Female Asylum. From there, Jane was indentured to a wealthy family who changed her name, never adopted her, wrote her out of the will, and essentially taught her how to hate herself. Jilted at the altar, Jane became a nurse and took control of her life, and the lives of her victims.

Readers of America’s First Female Serial Killer:

  • Will gain insight into the personal development of a severely damaged person without rationalizing her crimes
  • Experience the rarely told story of a female serial killer
  • Understand that even monsters were humans, first

If you enjoyed books such as In Cold BloodPerfumeAlias Grace, or Devil in the White City; you will love reading America’s First Female Serial Killer.

Goodreads | IndieBound


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