Friday, July 13, 2018

Nancy Lee Badger Presents Children's Author Renée Filippucci-Kotz

Renée Filippucci-Kotz is a local author like me, here in Raleigh, North Carolina. She stopped by to share another new book. Take it away!

Pepper’s Misadventure is the second children’s, chapter book in the Amelia Jae Series.  (AJ’s Wish is the first).  AJ and her mother are driving their new kitty, Pepper, to the veterinarian when they are in a fender bender.  AJ doesn’t listen to her mom and takes Pepper out of her carrier.  Pepper is frightened, jumps out of AJ’s arms and runs away.

Excerpt from Pepper's Misadventure

On the way to Dr. Simon’s office, Mom stopped at a stop sign. As she drove the car through the intersection, a car coming from a side street didnt stop. Suddenly, there was a screech of tires and then a hard jolt. The car hit them in the side, putting a large dent in the left back door. AJ and Mom were stunned for a moment.
 “Are you hurt? Are you all right?” asked Mom.
“I’m okay, but my heart is pounding, and I’m a little shaky,” said AJ. Her face was pale beneath her freckles.
“Let’s get out while I call the police. Leave Pepper in the car, said Mom. AJ and Mom got out of the car. Mom went to talk to the driver who hit them and to call the police.
“I’ll just check you out,said AJ as she slid Pepper’s carrier across the seat. She opened the carrier door and lifted Pepper out. As Mom was talking to the police on the phone, she saw AJ take Pepper out of the carrier.
“Amelia Jae, I told you to leave Pepper in the car. Put her back in there right now,” said Mom. “It’s not safe for her to be out of it.”
“But Mom, I just wanted to make sure she was okay,” said AJ.
“Put her back now, Amelia Jae,” said Mom.
AJ reached for the carrier to put Pepper back in the car. A dog in the back seat of the other car barked loudly. Startled, Pepper jumped out of AJ’s arms. The dog saw Pepper and barked even louder as it scratched at the window. Terrified, Pepper ran.
“Come back, Pepper! cried AJ.
Pepper kept running, even though she stepped on some broken glass in the street and cut her front right paw.


More About the Author

Renée Filippucci-Kotz was born in New York and grew up in Kentucky. Renée developed a passion for books and animals as a child. Going to the library with her parents and brother was a favorite pastime. She has always loved to read.

Growing up Renée had a vivid imagination.  She loved to make up stories. She would tell stories to the children for whom she babysat and the children at day camp where she was a counselor.

She became interested in writing for children while working with foster children. Her first children’s chapter book, AJ’s Wish, was published in 2016. Her second chapter book in the AJ series, Pepper's Misadventure, published in 2017, received honorable mention in the Carteret Writers Contest. In addition, she has published her first picture book, Booker and the Stinky Smell in 2017.

Renée recently completed her second picture book, Smokey and Clover the Runaway Goat.  To be published later this year.  She is currently working on the third book in the Amelia Jae series, Mystery at Camp Piney Woods.

When not writing, Renée enjoys reading, gardening, traveling, volunteering at her local animal shelter and spending time with her husband and pets. Ms. Filippucci-Kotz lives in North Carolina. Connect with her here:

...and please check out her other books



  1. Nice interview and the excerpt. Animals certainly make for a lively story.

    1. ...and I love Renee's covers and titles, especially Booker and the Stinky Smell. Ha!