This story was hard to read in one way since I had a yellow lab just a few years ago who was over 13. I smiled when I related how she could have talked and thought just like this lab. Loved the dog's personality but cried at the tough parts of the book because I did relate so well. Was glad I read the book in the end even though I thought I might have to put it down in the beginning. One of those books I might even go back and read again just for the dog's great comments. I did not read the print version, but enjoyed hearing this book just a get a glimpse of the dog's personality.
Certainly not one of my favorite books, but it's not bad. If you're looking for a story as told by a dog, I certainly preferred "A Dogs Purpose". But I did like the characters in this story and enjoyed listening to it. I feel like I learned some lessons about positive attittudes and how to endure thru the toughest of times. If I was a big fan of race cars, I probably would have enjoyed it more.
My wife had recommended this book and I admit I was initially put off by the title, not being a racing fan, but I think that this was one of the most enjoyable books I have recently read (listened to actually). Being a dog person, I enjoyed seeing the world through our best friends eyes. I especially loved the sidebars of lists and explanations provided by Enzo. I found myself laughing out loud as I listened alone in my car. Also, I agreed with many of Enzo's insights. This book reminded me of another favorite, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, and while not quite the same, equally enjoyable. Even now knowing the story, I will listen to it again.
Books, and words, and information are my treasures.
No, I kept waiting for the book to get good and it didn't happen.
Life of Pi
The narrator didn't have much to work with.
No thank you.
Audiobooks are my workaround to the pesky laws forbidding reading while driving. And I'm pretty sure my dog likes them too.
I have struggled with how to rate and review this book. I think because I love my dogs in such an extreme way, any book that delves so deeply into the fleeting yet ironclad relationship between a dog and owner will be tough for me to read. So, I have tried to be as objective as possible in some respects, and to temper my emotional response to this book.
I'll start with the performance: Phenomenal. This is the first book I've listened to with Christopher Welch as the narrator, and I am going to look for more books that he has narrated. He was amazing. Welch managed to capture every single voice, male and female, in a believable way that made the listening experience very pleasant. And his voice for the primary character, Enzo, was impeccable. Welch captured every bit of emotion that the writer clearly wished to convey. I don't cry over books or movies easily, so I have the sense that my emotional response to this story would not have been nearly as strong, if not for Welch's stellar narration.
The story is very well-written. The perspective is clever, as the entire story is told through the dog's eyes. Enzo wants to be human, and thinks like a human, thus his perspective has been quite anthropomorphized - but that is part of the story. He tells us the tale of his own life, thereby narrating the tale of his master's life. And it is quite a life. The writing is meticulous and perfectly embodies the emotion that the author wishes to convey. I enjoyed the dog's personality, and some parts really made me laugh, as they were so perfectly written to describe mannerisms and activities that are often seen in my own dogs.
So why three stars for the story? Much of it was predictable. The foreshadowing was too obvious in many places. It was very emotional (see above) which made it difficult to enjoy the story for its merits, as I was too busy trying not to bawl as I drove down the freeway. After my first two hour drive with the book, I made it a "listen at home only" book and just listened to it when I had free time or when I was walking the dog. So, for my purposes - staying awake on a long commute - the story didn't fit the bill. I could go into more detail, but I don't want to add any spoilers in here. Suffice it to say, I needed something more lighthearted and less real. (I should also note here that my occupation also prejudices me against the book, as I deal with one of the main storylines on a regular basis, and I read to escape my life, not relive it.)
The bottom line? If you like a good cry, read this book. If you love dogs, and can handle the emotional side of dog ownership, read this book. If you listen to audiobooks in public and tend to think your dogs are people too, save this one for a rainy day.
Inspiring, funny, relatable
The narrator of the book was different and fun with perspectives that make you think about life and life's events.
Its got a great title already
For sheer enjoyment of a great story this keep you wanting more and more!!
The attempted seduction.
This was so captivating that I must have driven several miles out of my way to just finish the book. I would recommend this book to anyone that has a dog or has had one at sometime in their life. There will be tears and laughter throughout the book. It has a great moral to the story and allow the reader to have and look forward to life with hope.
interesting, unique, funny
Enso, loved his layed back attitude.
Anyone who loves animals would love this book, anyone with little exposure to animals might want to read this book.
The pace (racing pun intended) is a bit uneven, but the book is, overall, wonderful if you're an animal lover. I'm not a race car fan but that's an integral part of the bond between man and dog.
Kudos to the writer for juggling the happy-sad theme. Awesome ending.
Lynda @ Book Editing Associates
Car lovers and dog lovers will both be equally supremely pleased with this book. However, the real beauty of this book is that even people who aren't car or dog fanatics can enjoy the unique telling of a lifelong friendship from a character that doesn't even have the ability to speak.
This story was an extremely refreshing change of pace from most things I've read or listened to. Garth Stein nailed it when he chose to narrate this from a dog's perspective. There are just so many aspects of everyday life that we all overlook and take for granted, bu t have been brought to life by this story.
I couldn't help but imagine my brother and his dog in some of the same situations as Denny and Enzo. There is a very good reason for the cliche nickname that dog's have earned in our lives: man's best friend.
I was also pleasantly surprised at the level of racing knowledge that was exhibited. I'm not the biggest race fan you'll meet, but I have definitely dabbled in a few forms of automotive indulgence. The history and appreciation for racing that Garth Stein writes about is great!