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4 February 2012 / getrus

The Hundred and One Dalmatians — Dodie Smith

I loved this movie when I was a kid and was finally able to read the book this past week.  It was amazing; so much better than the movie.

Mr. and Mrs. Dearly meet and so do their dogs, Pongo and Missis.  Missis has puppies (15 to be exact) and this where the fun begins.  Missis cannot feed 15 puppies by herself so Mrs. Dearly goes to find a surrogate mother- enter Perdita a liver spotted Dalmatian who lost her puppies when they were taken from her by her owner.

Things are splendid until we consider Cruella de Vil.  Cruella was an old classmate of Mrs. Dearly who was kicked out of school for drinking ink.  She always is wearing fur, has a striped black and white car, and like to be hot (I mean roasting).  She sees the dogs (Missis and Pongo) and later the puppies and gets the idea for a Dalmatian coat.  And makes the mistake of dognapping Pongo and Missis’s puppies.  This leads them on an adventure to find them which involves the like of a Retriever, a Spaniel, Colonel and Lieutenant Tib (whose real name is Pussy Willow), as well as a Great Dane and a Stradfordshire Terrier.  Pongo, Missis, their fifteen pups and another 82 puppies find their way back to the Dearly’s on Christmas.

But this is only 100 Dalmatians (including Perdita).  Prince (Perdita’s beloved) joins the group as well.  And her puppies were part of the 82.

**** (four stars)

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