Books

I Capture the Castle

Dodie Smith

"I write this sitting in the kitchen sink" is the memorable first line of this enchanting coming-of-age story, told in the form of Cassandra Mortmain's journal. Cassandra wittily describes life growing up in a crumbling castle, with her father who suffers from crippling writer's block, her glamorous but ineffectual step-mother and her vain but beloved sister Rose. When two visiting Americans arrive, all of their lives are turned upside down, and Cassandra experiences her first love.

This is a classic coming-of-age story, beloved of generations of teenage and adult readers, by Dodie Smith, who also wrote The Hundred and One Dalmatians.

Biography

Dorothy 'Dodie' Smith was born in 1896 in Derbyshire and was one of the most successful dramatists of her generation. During the 1940s she lived in the USA and it was homesickness for England that inspired her classic novel I Capture the Castle (1948). It was an immediate success and was also adapted for the stage in the 1950s as well as becoming a successful film in 2003. Dodie Smith is also the author of the much-loved book The Hundred and One Dalmatians, which has famously been twice filmed by Disney. Dodie Smith died in 1990.