“They Both Liked Dogs” is about two cousins, both named Frederica. One has grown up in Burma and the other in Tasmania, after moving around the world a great deal. Having reached the age of 14, both girls are in need of a home in England so that they can go to school. Their young aunt Mollie offers to take them in. The girls are very different: one is spoilt and selfish, and the other is really rather too old and responsible for her age. Mollie has a German Shepherd dog and the girls react differently to him, according to their personalities. Ms Brent Dyer makes it clear that girls who are afraid of big dogs are really rather silly!
The Burmese Frederica, also known as Erica, is given a wire-hair terrier, while the other Frederica, also known as Freddie, is given an Alsation pup. (Ms Brent Dyer refers to the breed as Alsation rather than German Shepherd). The girls go to school and do well, in varying degrees, and Freddie takes up showing dogs as a hobby. There are a number of adventures: including two yobs trying to rob the house and being “dissuaded” by Mollie’s dog, and school adventures. Until Erica learns not to be so self-centred and Freddie learns that people’s characters are not all black-and-white. And Mollie? Well, Mollie meets a very nice young man. And shock horrors to anyone who has read the Chalet School books, he is not a doctor! I really enjoyed the book. It was published in 1938 and re-published in 2012 by Girls Gone By Press and is still in print.