Dorothy Gladys "Dodie" Smith, born in 1896 in Lancashire, England, was one of the most successful female dramatists of her generation. She wrote Autumn, Crocus,and Dear Octopus,among other plays. I Capture the Castle,her first novel, was written in the 1940s while she was living in America. An immediate success, it marked her crossover from playwright to novelist, and was produced as a play in 1954. Smith also wrote the novels The Town in Bloom, It Ends with Revelations, A Tale of Two Families,and The Girl in the Candle-Lit Bath,but she is best known today as the author of two highly popular stories for young readers: The Hundred and One Dalmatians and The Starlight Barking.She died in 1990.