Peppe’s book recounts her haphazard youth as the youngest member of an eccentric, nine-child family on a hardscrabble Maine farm, where she and her siblings were raised in an atmosphere of sibling rivalry, poverty, male chauvinism, and absurd interactions with their animals and pets. In telling her wayward family tale, Peppe manages deadpan humor, an unerring eye for the absurd, and poignant compassion for her utterly overwhelmed parents. With feisty resilience and candor, she offers wry insight and moments of tenderness with family and animals. One reviewer said: "Pigs Can't Swim” is an unruly, joyous troublemaker of a book.
Helen Peppe began writing stories, mostly about animals, on scraps of butcher paper when she was knee-high to a horse. (All of her furry characters lived happily ever after.) As a student, she wrote short stories and personal essays while working as a professional photographer specializing in horses and dogs.
She lives near Portland, Maine, with her husband, Eric, her children, four dogs, four rescued rabbits, four guinea pigs, and two destructive kittens. For more information on this free program, call the Dover Public Library at 603-516-6050.