MY FAMILY’S LOVE AFFAIR WITH THIRTY-EIGHT DALMATIANS
Counterpoint (September 9, 2014)
The Sexton family’s long love affair with the Dalmatian began in Linda’s childhood. There, on a snowy morning in the family home just outside Boston, Linda heard a whimpering coming from the basement. She discovered their first family dog giving birth to a litter. Witnessing the intimate act of birth had a profound effect on the family. Her mother, Anne, used the experience to complete the poem “Live,” part of her third collection, titled Live or Die , which would be awarded a Pulitzer Prize. For Linda, the boundless joy of both breed and breeding triggered in her a lifelong love of Dalmatians. All told, thirty-eight Dalmatians will move through her life: the ones that cheer and support her through difficulty, divorce, and depression; the ones that stay with her as she enters the world of professional breeding and showing of Dals; and, of course, the one true dog of her heart, Gulliver, her most stalwart of canine champions.
Bespotted is a page-turning and compelling look at the unique place dogs occupy in our lives. It captures another piece of this literary family’s history, taps into the curious and fascinating world of dog showing/dog fancy. Bespotted is an upbeat and commercial memoir by one of the most critically acclaimed memoirists of our time.