Friday, January 18, 2013

Author Interview with Peg Kehret

The DMS was lucky enough to interview Peg Kehret, author of the middle grade novel Saving Lilly. Lizzy reviewed this engaging story, and it was great to share our thoughts about it and hear yours! We are excited to learn a little bit more about the story behind the story. So, without further ado... take it away, Peg! 


What inspired you to write Saving Lilly?


I was browsing in the exhibit hall at an American Library Association convention. An animal welfare group had a display with information about various problems, including a pamphlet about the abuse of circus elephants. When I got home, I read the pamphlet and then began researching the facts. I realized well-meaning adults took children to circuses where animals are mistreated without ever knowing that their attendance encouraged cruel practices. As with so many problems, education is the key to a solution.

How long did it take you to write Saving Lilly?

I don’t remember exactly, but most books take me about six months.

What are some of your favorite books from childhood? Were there any specific authors who inspired you?

For several years on each birthday and for Christmas I received one of Johnny Gruelle’s Raggedy Ann books. I still have all of them. I used to play library, and each Raggedy book has a card taped on the inside front cover with a place for the borrower’s name and a due date. The spaces are all blank, as I could not bear to let my beloved books out of my own possession. Later, I loved Daddy Long Legs by Jean Webster. I also identified strongly with Jo in Little Women.

Where did you come up with the characters Erin and Mrs. Dawson?

Of all the characters I’ve invented, Erin is most like me. All my life I’ve had situations where my beliefs and feelings were different from those of my peers, and I’ve learned how important it is to stay true to who I am. Erin does that. Mrs. Dawson was complete fiction, but I did want to try to make her more than a mean teacher by showing the reasons for her actions and by having her be willing to change.


If you could befriend a character from any of your books, who would you befriend? Why?

Sunny, in Runaway Twin. Sunny is smart, and she has spunk and compassion despite her unhappy early years which were no fault of her own. At the end of the book, she is beginning her new life with her foster mom, Rita, and with Snickers, the dog. I’d like to give her a hand.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? Why?

I’m already living exactly where I choose, in a log house on a ten acre wooded wildlife sanctuary that adjoins hundreds of acres of forest land. I especially love to see the deer bed down outside my windows because I know that means they feel safe here. I feed many varieties of birds, and have natural brush shelters for rabbits and other small creatures. I also do foster care for rescued cats.

What is your favorite animal?

Kids ask me this a lot but I have no answer. Each animal is unique, with special qualities that I appreciate. I like opposums and skunks as much as puppies and kittens. There’s no way I can choose one animal over all the rest.

Where can we purchase your books?

Any book store can order my books if they don’t already stock them. They’re also available from all the on-line sources.

Amazon ☞ Barnes and Noble 

Connect with this author:
Author Website  Facebook










* Keep an eye out for the new audio release for Animals Welcome

26 comments:

  1. Thanks for this great interview. I love reading books about animals that are saved from abuse. They are so inspiring. I am going to the library today and while there, i'm going to look for Saving Lily.

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    1. Hi Alex, Me too! I can't honestly understand animal abuse, so it's great when authors write about it, so we can all learn about how to be better to the things around us. Great that you are picking the book up in the library, we hope that you enjoy it! Thanks so much for stopping by to share your thoughts with us : ) ~ F

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  2. She sounds wonderful...deer under her window? That's my idea of happy!

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    1. Hi Patty, Isn't that great! I love where she lives too- sounds magical! great to hear from you : ) ~ F

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  3. SIx months? THat is awesome. I have deer coming through my yard all the time as well. I am not good at reading books about animal abuse, no matter how it turns out it always make me cry. I loved Jo in Little Women as well, but I never understood why she didn't pick Laurie... I would have!

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    1. Hi Heidi, Tales about animals being harmed is so hard to read, but it's good to bring it into the light. Little Women was a great classic! Lovely to hear from you : ) ~ F

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  4. What a wonderful interview! I love the pictures! I definitely want to add Saving Lilly to my reading list. Thanks so much for sharing <3

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    1. Hi Cheles Bells, It was wonderful to learn more about Peg Kehret, and her story is definitely one for the shelves! We hope that you enjoy it! : ) ~ F

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  5. Great interview! I too am an animal lover and this hits close to home.

    Paul R. Hewlett

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    1. Hi Lionel, Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us! ~ F

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  6. I'm a little jealous of where Peg lives. ;)

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  7. Great interview. Sounds like a great book. And I'd also love to live where she lives, sounds like a wonderful place.

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    1. Hi creativewriting, It's a great story to pass along to readers. Peg is a very good writer! Thanks so much for popping over : ) ~ F

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  8. I'm with Paul (Lionel) in that as an animal lover, it hits close to home whenever animal abuse comes up as an issue in a story. And where Peg lives sounds soooo beautiful!

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    1. Hi Claudine, Does't it though??? I would love to live there : ) ~ F

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  9. Oh my goodness! Playing Library. Why had I never thought of that? I wish I went to the library more when I was young. Maybe I would have realized much sooner how many great books are out there.
    That's a lot of acres. It must be so peaceful.

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    1. Adriana- Playing library sounds so fun! I try to go to the library as often as I can. I am glad you realize now how many great books are out there. I agree- all those acres do sound peaceful. :) ~L

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  10. This was a great review. I think the cover is darling.

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    1. Donna- Thanks so much! Glad you enjoyed the interview and review. :) ~L

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  11. What a wonderful interview, and a wonderful place to live! I would love to live close to a wildlife sanctuary.

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    1. Barbara- Thanks! So happy that you enjoyed the interview. Peg certainly has a great place to live. :) ~L

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  12. Great interview :D Peg seems adorable. <3 Also, love the cover :) Thank you for sharing :)
    Love, Carina @ Carina's Books

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    1. Carina- Thanks! So glad you enjoyed the interview. :) ~L

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  13. How cool--I just reviewed The Volcano Disaster last week and loved it. I think Ms. Kehret has written a lot of great books. I'm always interested to hear more about the people behind the stories.

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    1. Timetraveltimestwo- I am looking forward to reading The Volcano Disaster- your review was excellent. Ms. Kehret sure is a wonderful author. Thanks for stopping by! ~L

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