Monday, June 08, 2009

The 101 Dalmations, by Dodie Smith

It's Monday and we need something fun to think about. For me, I enjoyed taking some time this past week/weekend reading an old children's classic - The 101 Dalmatians.

I read 101 Dalmatians for three reasons:

1. It was written by the same author who wrote I Capture the Castle (you can see my review by clicking on the link);

2. Because Sarah at Library Hospital highly recommended it; and

3. Because it was listed in The Book Tree as being a Don't Miss.


Am I glad I read it? You bet! I'm glad I didn't hesitate to purchase a copy at our local used bookstore! I figured between Sarah and The Book Tree, I could hardly go wrong.

I didn't (go wrong). I definitely plan on pulling this out when our kids are a little older and enjoying it with them. It's a fairly quick read (at 184 pages) and easy for children ages 6 and up to understand, I would think. I'd probably take a stab at 8-12 being the perfect ages to enjoy this book as a Read Aloud.

Although I didn't care for I Capture the Castle so much, I really enjoyed Smith's style of writing in The 101 Dalmations. The way she brought the dogs to life and gave them personalities that the reader could actually identify with and care about is very, well, fun. I smiled and chuckled a great deal through this book and was equally horrified by the depravity of Cruella de Vil. She's even meaner in the book than she is in the movie!

(There is something about Disney's "old" way of animating that causes my heart to stir and I sigh in happiness over crude pencil lines and imaginative, yet clean, story telling.)

As most everything Disney touches, they changed the storyline from the book to the big screen. However, it was not changed so much as to be distracting. I enjoyed the movie thoroughly as I was growing up and I enjoyed the book thoroughly as a grown up.

Per usual, when Sarah gets to a book before I do, there's really no sense in my writing up an additional review of it. Sarah reviewed The 101 Dalmations in a delightful manner and I'd encourage you to bop over and read her review of it. All I can add is my two thumbs, pointed upward as a sign of complete solidarity with her already expressed opinion. This is a great book and following the advice of The Book Tree - it's one to purchase and put on your home book shelves.


Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

I'll definitely have to check this one out!

Ronnica said...

I didn't realize it was originally a book, though I shouldn't be surprised. I don't really like books/movies about animals (especially if they talk!), but I did enjoy both movies as a kid.

Tina's Blog said...

I loved reading this one to my first graders and then comparing it to the movie. I think the book is so much better!

Katrina said...

Can't believe I've never read this one! We've always liked the movie, so maybe I'll add the book to C's reading list this summer...

Stephanie Kay said...

I also didn't realize there was an original book. My familiarity with the story comes through Disney. Thanks for sharing with us!

Sarah M. said...

Yeah, I'm so glad you got a chance to read it and enjoyed it. :)

Annette W. said...

Tonight we're watching the movie...and in the opening credits I saw it was based on a book. I had to come directly here and see if it was on your list and if you had read the book. Of course you had!

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