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From Pictures to Words - a guide to choosing books for beginner readers:
Children's Classics


The Hundred and One Dalmatians by Dodie Smith
Published by Heinemann, 1993
ISBN 0-434-96066-7


First published in 1956, The Hundred and One Dalmatians became the basis for the smash hit Disney movie of the same name.

The story is told from the dogs’viewpoint. Pongo and Missis find it touching that their humans actually believe they own the dogs, instead of realising that they, the dogs, own them.

Cruella De Vil is a very evil woman. She will do anything to have a dalmatian fur coat. She is determined to turn the adorable dalmatian puppies born to Pongo and Missis into just that. Having set about buying all the dalmatians she can find, her plan is foiled when the Dearlys refuse to sell their much loved pets. But with the help of Saul and Jasper Baddun she succeeds in her mission and, one cold windy day, all the dalmatian puppies disappear.

Enlisting the help of their friends through The Twilight Bark, Pongo and Missis are reunited not only with their own family but with all the other dalmatians that Cruella and her team have stolen. Their adventures along the way continue to delight children of the twenty-first century, just as they did when the book was first written in 1956. This is a must for all dog lovers, young and old.

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