Monday, April 22, 2013

Book Review: The Art of Racing in the Rain - Garth Stein


The Art of Racing in the Rain
Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs), he has educated himself by watching television extensively, and by listening very closely to the words of his master, Denny Swift, an up-and-coming race car driver.

Through Denny, Enzo has gained tremendous insight into the human condition, and he sees that life, like racing, isn’t simply about going fast.  Using the techniques needed on the race track, one can successfully navigate all of life’s ordeals.

On the even of his death, Enzo takes stock of his life, recalling all that he and his family have been through: the sacrifices Denny has made to succeed professionally; the unexpected loss of Eve, Denny’s wife; the three-year battle over their daughter, Zoe, whose maternal grandparents pull every string to gain custody.  In the end, despite what he sees as his own limitations, Enzo comes through heroically to preserve the Swift family, holding in his heart the dream that Denny will become a racing champion with Zoe at his side.  Having learned what it takes to be a compassionate and successful person, the wise canine can barely wait until his next lifetime, when he is sure he will return as a man.

A heart-wrenching but deeply funny and ultimately uplifting story of family, love, loyalty, and hope, The Art of Racing in the Rain is a beautifully crafted and captivating look at the wonders and absurdities of human life…as only a dog could tell it.

4/5 stars (really liked it)
I’d like to say that my dog is as much of an intellectual as Enzo is but I’m afraid he’s not.  Although after reading this book I might talk to him a little more and have more understanding when he misbehaves.  I loved Enzo from the very fist page of this book and even though I knew he would be dying at the end I still cried.  All that Enzo and Denny went through was truly life changing.  Enzo was so loyal and took great care with his owner.  He was more than a dog and greatly deserved to be re-born as a man.

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