I thought I'd be bored by the "racing" elements, but the reader even does a great job making those parts interesting with his varied inflections, and tones for different characters. If you love dogs, you'll like this book. It's not all happy go lucky..there are definitely adult themes/language peppered throughout.
This is a short book you'll have a hard time putting down. It is a story told by Enzo, a mix breed retriever who's proud to have a little spaniel in his 'heinz 57' pedigree.
The story opens as Enzo is entering his twelfth year, he's 84 in man-years. Tired, sore, and stiff from hip dysplasia plus a tangle with a car a few years back, Enzo tells us his life's story from being picked out of a multi-puppy litter by his forever master and best friend, to his pending trip across and beyond the Rainbow Bridge.
What an engrossing story this turns out to be, even though its being told to you by a dog, in first person, you get pulled in on the turn of every quick page. Enzo will quickly let you know that a dog can't dwell on things to long, so the book's chapters are short, tantalizing, and presented just as Enzo sees things.
Of course there are some 'life lessons' in this story told by a dog about his human family. He'll talk about the 'Black Demon Zebra' that can drive you blind with rage, the Mongolian legends about dogs and an afterlife, and he really does get to ride in a racecar...though not in the rain.
We all get wrapped up in our everyday dramas of life that are played out at work, home, and in our deepest feelings. Even with all that going on, I encourage you, to take the few hours to let Enzo tell you his story. You'll be reminded of the most important formulas for a successful and happy life....."you can't win the race if you don't finish the race" and you must keep your eyes on the road ahead of you.....because "where the eyes go, the wheels go" !
Enjoy.....I sure did !
Loved this story...great story of human willingness not to give up, even among the greatest of odds. I believe that most will enjoy this book, but perhaps especially dog lovers.
Be prepared to be sad for the majority of this listen. I was looking for an entertaining read that had it's ups and downs. This is what the other reviews suggested. The book was well narrated but was very short on ups and heavy on the downs. The dogs point of view is well thought out and clever but the story it relates to is "ruff".
We recently lost one of our pack and I thought this might help me with my grief. I really enjoyed the perspective from which this story is told. Some of what the family went through touched me personally. I really loved and appreciated this book. My new mantra is "that in which you manifest is before you"....thank you Enzo.
My cousin recommended this book to me partly because she knows I like auto racing. But this was so much more about life than about racing. I laughed, I cried, I got angry and I pondered over the wisdom of this dog and his family.
I highly recommend this to anyone looking for a good weekend read.
Whether you are a dog lover or not, you will love this book.
The Art of Racing in the Rain is about a philosophical, television-watching dog named Enzo, who dreams of the day he becomes a man. He gives us his wise (and comedic) observations of the world as he helps his owner, a race car driver who faces a series of heart-wrenching experiences.
This is a book you almost have to listen to. There is a part of the book that involves a voice synthesizer that had me laughing out loud. I don't know if the written word would have had the same effect.
Extremely well-written and insightful. I put off reading this book because of the dog-as-narrator angle, but in this case it works beautifully.
The narration is as good as it gets.
I thoroughly enjoyed "The Art of Racing in the Rain". The idea of a family's story being told from the dog's point-of-view was pure genius, and the way that it was executed far exceeded my expectations. The author and narrator could have easily portrayed the family dog (Enzo) as the stereo-typical happy-go-lucky family pet, but no. Enzo was wise beyond his years, and it was truly a pleasure to hear all that he was thinking.
However, I would have to say that the last third of the book was especially difficult to get though, at least until the final two chapters. Denny's struggle is enough to make any father cringe at what he endured. But through it all, Enzo was there to help, even though he may not have been able to communicate directly.
If you're a dog lover or you enjoyed "Marley and Me", I highly suggest giving this book a try. You won't be disappointed.
Highly recommend this clever book -- easy to listen to and the lead character is insightful and loveable. I got a bit teary, but uplifting in end -- certainly not a downer. Hoping to read more from this author.