Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Sally's People are characters I invented for books, short stories and poems. Their creation spans the last three decades of the 20th Century and (so far) the first of the 21st.
Preacher is the son of Jack Russell: Dog Detective and his lady of choice, Jill Russell. Preacher's arrival is foreshadowed in Book 6, The Sausage Situation, in which Jack is off to spend some time with Jill. In the next book, The Buried Biscuits, Jill has a litter of four puppies, and in Book 8, The Kitnapped Creature, Preacher is living with Sarge Russell and Jack. It's a bachelor establishment, for the time being, and Jack takes on the training and bringing up of his son.
Preacher is happy, friendly and enthusiastic. He looks up to his dad and Sarge, and loves to go back to see his mum. He models himself on Jack, and occasionally shows shrewdness in his comments. He has a wilful streak, and makes friends with Fat Molly Cat, going against Jack's wishes. As the books continue, Preacher grows from a puppy to a young dog and by the time Book 11, Inspector Jacques, rolls around, he is slightly bigger (and a good deal heavier) than his father. He is, as Jack puts it, a "pawtly pup". A bad experience with children damages Preacher's confidence for a while. That's something he will have to work through.
Preacher is named for, and modelled on, our own dog. That's OUR Preacher's photo on the cover of The Kitnapped Creature. The Jack Russell stories are published by Scholastic, and by Kane Miller and Bolinda Audio, and beautifully illustrated by Janine Dawson.