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Publisher's Summary

Pongo and Missis Pongo are a pair of Dalmatians who live with the newly married Mr. and Mrs. Dearly and their two nannies. Mr. Dearly is a "financial wizard" who has been granted life-long tax exemption and lent a house on the Outer Circle in Regent's Park in return for wiping out the government debt. The dogs consider the humans their pets, but allow the humans to think that they are the owners.
Missis gives birth to a litter of 15 puppies. Concerned that Missis will not be able to feed them all, Mrs. Dearly looks for a wet nurse, and finds an abandoned Dalmatian mother in the middle of the road in the pouring rain. She has the dog treated by a vet and names her Perdita.
Mr. and Mrs. Dearly attend a dinner party hosted by Cruella de Vil, an intimidating and very wealthy woman fixated with fur. The Dearlys are disconcerted by her belief that all animals are worthless and should be drowned. Shortly after the dinner party, the puppies disappear. The humans fail to trace them, but through the "Twilight Barking", a forum of communication in which dogs can relay messages to each other across the country, the dogs manage to track them down to "Hell Hall", the ancestral home of the de Vil family in Suffolk.
Pongo and Missis decide to run away from home and find them, leaving Perdita to look after the Dearlys. After a journey across the countryside, they learn that there are 97 puppies in Hell Hall, including their own 15.
Thus commences a determined attempt to rescue the Dalmatian puppies quickly before they end up as fur for one of Cruella de Vil’s famous black and white fur coats.
©1956 CSA Word (P)2003 CSA Word
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Critic Reviews

"Martin Jarvis continues to bring the classics of children's literatue to new audiences with a reading of Dodie Smith's dognapping adventure every bit as enjoyable as his Just William series" ( The Daily Telegraph)
"Fun as the film was, it did not do justice to the cascade of wit and jokes that flows from Dodie Smith's pen in the Peter Pan, this is a book that will be as much enjoyed by parents as children." ( The Independent)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Jim "The Impatient" on 11-16-16


What a wonderful story. This is not a Disney Movie made into a book, but a 1956 book that was adapted into a movie in 1961. It is extremely well written and can be enjoyed by the whole family. At times it is laugh out loud funny. I found the General, to be extremely funny. Dog owners will love it the most.

Since it was written in 56 and even though it was written by a woman, there are some noticeable sexist remarks. The mother dog, is referred to as Mrs., while her husband has a name, Pongo. Mrs. can't tell her right from her left and the male dogs think, that is cute. The male pups struggle bravely, but the female pups, just can't go on. With that exception, I recommend this book, highly. It is entertaining, fun and intelligent.

Narrator does an excellent job

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28 of 30 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Arie on 03-04-13

A lot of fun

Don't let the fact that this is supposed to be a children's book stop you from listening to this entertaining and well written story. The narrator does a great job of voicing all of the characters in a believable fashion.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Freddi on 04-13-13

101 Dalmatians

A beautiful book beautifully read. It kept both adults and children happily entertained all the way down to Cornwall recently. Although the rough plot line will be familiar to most families from the Disney film the book is subtler and more carefully plotted. There are wider range of characters, both canine and human, and the dogs' final revenge upon Cruella de Vil is both viscerally exciting and absolutely fitting to her planned crime. My 7 year old son said it was 'fantastic' and we are now reading the book itself. A great way to introduce children to the stories behind the simplified Disney films.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Miss on 04-09-13

Action packed, simple and fun!

My son really enjoyed this story, he is 6 years old and has seen the Disney film so was aware of the characters and the plot line. We particularly liked how the story is told from the dogs point of view which brings a certain humour to the narration. Recommended for all children of this age range as an easy to follow story.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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