Sara S. Frear grew up in upstate New York and earned her B.A. in East Asian Studies, with a concentration in Japanese, graduating summa cum laude from Yale University in 1982.  After working as an ESL instructor in Tokyo for two years, she moved to New York City where she worked as a “homefinder” for a private foster care agency.  In 2001 she entered the direct-track Ph.D. program at Auburn University, earning both an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Early American History in 2007.  Her dissertation is titled “‘A Fine View of the Delectable Mountains’: The Religious Vision of Mary Virginia Terhune (Marion Harland) and Augusta Evans Wilson.”  Following a one-year lectureship at the University of South Alabama, Dr. Frear joined the Department of History and Great Texts at Houston Baptist University, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in American, Western, and Japanese history.  Her areas of research are American women’s history, religious history, Old South, and nineteenth-century popular culture, with a particular emphasis on religion in popular women’s novels.