Heal the Bay’s Aquarium under the Santa Monica Pier served as an appropriate venue this weekend for the launch of a new young adult novel, An Accidental Pirate: The Possibly True Adventures of Fanny Campbell, by Brooks Almy.
Almy was inspired to write the book after coming across a single paragraph about Fanny Campbell in a book about women pirates. It said Campbell disguised herself as a man and took to the sea to rescue her husband who had been imprisoned in Cuba in the 1800s.
“But that’s all it said and then I couldn’t find any information about her,” Almy said. “We still don’t know whether she was fictional or if she was a real person.”
Fanny stuck in Almy’s mind for years, during which she tried to find more information about her, until one day when she made the decision to fill in the blanks in the story herself.
“Fanny came pouring out of me,” she said. “Fanny demanded to be written.”
The character of Fanny in the novel embodies everything Almy said she wanted to be and do growing up: fearless, strong and independent.
“She rode horses, fought with broadswords and cutlasses, sailed the ships in the bay every day and ran her own farm,” she said.
Almy said she hopes the story inspires her readers to be all of these things and, even though Fanny disguises herself as someone else, at its core the novel is about embracing and loving your true, authentic self.
“Fanny, I hope, gives everyone permission to be themselves, whatever that is, with their uniqueness and their quirks, and whatever makes them who they are and to not get knocked down,” she said.
Almy said she already has several more Fanny Campbell books in the works that she hopes to publish in coming years.
A portion of the profits from the event were donated to Heal that Bay.
For more information on the book visit:https://www.brooksalmy.com/