Monthly Archives: February 2012

The Art of Racing in the Rain. Get Your Tissues Ready!

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Rating: 5/5

Cover art: 5/5 I think the cover to this novel is perfect. It’s very simple,

yet it shows us the knowing eyes of our favorite, furry friends: the dog.

Age Limit: 10 and up

Author: Garth Stein

Ever wondered what your dog is thinking about, or if he is thinking at all? Well Enzo does think. He thinks a lot, and is such a critical part in Denny’s life. What better way to tell a story, than through the eyes of your best friend?

Denny, a racecar driver, has a very complicated life. In the beginning it is just Denny and Enzo, living the single life. That is until Denny meets Eve. It is interesting to get to see how the couple acts through the eyes of a dog, and boy is he loyal to Denny. That is all Enzo ever thinks about. Enzo looks up to him so much and almost protects Denny from certain situations. So you can imagine how Enzo has his reservations when Eve comes into the picture and they have a daughter named Zoë.

Enzo has always perceived himself to be more of a human than a dog. He even teaches us, as readers, how to be human. He even is convinced that when he comes back one day in his next life, he will no doubt, be human.

“When I return to the world, I will be a man. I will walk among you. I will lick my lips with my small, dexterous tongue. I will shake hands with other men, grasping firmly with my opposable thumbs. And I will teach all people that I know. And when I see a man or a woman or a child in trouble, I will extend my hand, both metaphorically and physically. I will offer my hand. To him. To her. To you. To the world. I will be a good citizen, a good partner in the endeaver of life that we all share.”

He is larger than life and has so many things to say about living and his adversary, the “zebra,” which you will learn about if you happen to pick up this book and fall in love with it as I have.

When I first heard of this book, I was reading a post of a friend online about it. He quoted something out of the book (although it has been so long that I have forgotten the quotation) and then said how it was his favorite book. Well, knowing me, I have to read everything that is presented as a favorite of someone else (or just read everything in general. Take your pick.).  Little did I know that it would have such an impact on my life. I definitely look at my dog differently and know that she can understand me when I have a heart-to-heart with her. It is also, I will have you know, the only book that I had to put down in order to maintain visibility due to the massive amount of tears erupting from my tear ducts. I have never cried so much reading a book as I did in this one because of Enzo’s complete loyalty to his best friend. He is there for Denny whether he realizes it or not and always looks after him, even if it is detrimental to Enzo. So if you are an emotional human being (such as I) then this is your word of caution. You have been warned.

Denny’s life was flipped upside down following a traumatic event (I won’t tell you what that is. Don’t want to give too much away.), and after, has a horrendous custody battle with (again) unnamed characters over his daughter, Zoë.  Enzo, forever faithful, remains by his side throughout the whole affair.

Many other events happen, but in order not to spoil some of the best parts, I will keep it short and only leave you with these last statements; this book is absolutely wonderful and you will form an attachment to Enzo that doesn’t go away too quickly. I read this book in 2009 and will never forget how the whole book made me feel and actually changed the way I view my relationships with my dog and other people.  So please, please read this book and always remember: “Somewhere, the zebra is dancing.”

Just a side note: They (the lovely people in Hollywood) are planning to turn this into a film and right now it is said to be released in 2014. So this means you have PLENTY of time to read this book in time for the movie. (It is also rumored that Patrick Dempsey will play Denny!) I will attach a link to the book (not movie) trailer below.

I hope you enjoy this book as much as I have!

Happy reading everyone!

“The Printed Word: Readable – Usable – Recyclable – Sustainable – Biodegradable”

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