BBC London radio presenter and ex-Horsham schoolgirl Jo Good has her dog Matilda to thank for her first step into the world of literature.
Co-written by Jo and friend Anna Webb, Barking Blondes tells the ‘tail’ of the glamorous lives led by Matilda, Molly and their doting owners.
The book was released at the beginning of the month, and Jo, 58, explained how the idea surfaced five years ago.
She said: “The book came from me doing a documentary about never having had a child and replacing a child with a dog, and the first guest I was asked to interview was Anna.
“We had never looked after anything in our lives and we both looked after dogs, so after doing the interview we became mates.
“I was doing the late show on BBC London and I thought why don’t I do a dog show on the radio?”
The thought turned into a huge success: Robbie Williams, Jessie J and Macy Gray have all appeared on the show, Barking at the Moon, to talk about their love of dogs.
In Barking Blondes, Jo and Anna nearly drown in a rock star’s swimming pool and take their beloved pets to Paris whilst juggling their complicated personal lives.
Jo added: “It is about the relationship between female friends, and exploring if we can love a dog more than a human being.
“Releasing the book has been so exciting: all over the London Underground there are massive posters for us which is hysterical!”
Before making her breakthrough as an actress, appearing in the ITV soap Crossroads in the 1980s, Jo attended Horsham High School for Girls.
She said: “My Mum still lives in Horsham so I go back every weekend. It is really interesting going back, and seeing my old school which is now luxury apartments!
“Growing up in Horsham was a great middle ground between Brighton and London: if you came from Horsham you were still quite near to London so you were considered quite groovy.”