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The Art of Racing in the Rain | [Garth Stein]

The Art of Racing in the Rain

Why we think it’s a great listen: If you’ve ever loved a dog - or even patted a dog - this book, told from the perspective of man’s best friend, will tug at your heartstrings...and won’t let go until long after Welch performs the last word. 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.
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Publisher's Summary

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. 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 eve 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 pulled 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.

©2008 Bright White Light, LLC; (P)2008 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (5724 )
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Performance
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  •  
    FanB14 Rockville, VA, United States 05-04-12
    FanB14 Rockville, VA, United States 05-04-12 Member Since 2011

    Short, Simple, No Spoilers

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Artful Surprise"
    What did you love best about The Art of Racing in the Rain?

    The intelligence of the narrator. I dodged this book for so long because I thought it would be simplistic as just another dog book riding the "Marley & Me" coat tails. I finally listened to this after an Audible sale purchase and was amazed. The depth of the observations made by the narrator about what it's like to be a dog were spot on. All characters were fleshed out well and I felt the whole range of emotions Denny & Enzo. Fantastic book.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Enzo was insightful and intelligent and well versed in new age theory. He was funny and honest.


    What about Christopher Evan Welch’s performance did you like?

    Welch's voice emotes all the intelligence and wit possessed by Enzo. He sounds honest, forthright, and strong, just like Enzo.


    If you could rename The Art of Racing in the Rain, what would you call it?

    The name is perfect. As with all good titles, it has many meanings. It alludes to Denny's racing and all of the character's individual philosophy of life.


    Any additional comments?

    Buy this one. Great story & narrator.

    45 of 46 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lora Arnold, CA, United States 06-17-08
    Lora Arnold, CA, United States 06-17-08 Member Since 2005
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    "Enzo (because he's so wize) for president."

    Of the 125 books I've listened to, this one is my favorite. The human characters were beautifully developed, but Enzo the dog will steal your heart. The story brings out a full range of emotions; I laughed many times, and cried when it was over. My husband is listening to it now, and he thinks it's great too. Don't miss it.

    44 of 46 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bonnie Bremerton, WA, USA 01-31-10
    Bonnie Bremerton, WA, USA 01-31-10 Member Since 2008
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    "Inspiring without being cheesy"

    I am a dog person, not a cat person, so that was easy. But I had a bit of trouble keeping going through a couple parts as they closely reflected things that are happening with my dog. But how they were done was good and eventually not as painful as I thought they would be. On the whole, I loved the entire book. The dog's perspective was well done. The book gave me something to think about as to how to live my life. Good narrator. I'll be reading it again.

    27 of 28 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roger Green Cove Springs, FL, USA 02-23-10
    Roger Green Cove Springs, FL, USA 02-23-10 Member Since 2002
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    "5 out of 3000"

    I have over 3000 audiobooks in two accounts - and have listened to them all - even when I should have stopped. The Art of Racing in the Rain is without question one of the five best.

    74 of 79 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cliff Powell, OH, USA 03-04-09
    Cliff Powell, OH, USA 03-04-09
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    "A stunning read"

    I'll admit it... I frequently judge books by their covers. As a new owner of a yellow Labrador Retriever, this book screamed at me to pick it up off the table at our local library. I devoured the book, finishing it in just under two days. Then my wife read it at lightning speed.
    This is where is gets weird...
    After my wife read the book I read it again (something I have never done with fiction). Not only did I read it a second time, but then I picked it up here on audible.
    Yes, it simply *is* that good!
    The story is unique, and the main character's perspective is captivating. The book has really stuck with me, leading me to place a quote from it in my office at work.
    Give it a listen, I'm certain you'll enjoy it.

    34 of 36 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Wendy Harwinton, CT, United States 04-12-10
    Wendy Harwinton, CT, United States 04-12-10 Member Since 2010
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    "A Beautifully Told Story"

    I was skeptical about listening to this book because I am a dog lover and I was afraid that it would be too sad for me. However, this was incredibly well-written. I never got to the point where I was too distraught to listen. This book took me through a full range of emotions. One minute I was tearing up and the next I was chuckling to myself. It brought to mind my own beloved dog(s).
    I highly recommend this book!!!

    21 of 22 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Pennell Norton, OH, US 06-14-08
    M. Pennell Norton, OH, US 06-14-08 Member Since 2005

    Peggy P

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "What a Story!"

    It's been a while since I listened to a book and felt moved enough to write a review but this is one of the best this year. The premise is outlandish but it really works, the writing is beautiful. This story has everything in it - humor, friends, family, love and death. Within the first 5 minutes you are hooked on this story and will have a hard time turning it off. The narration and production of this book is excellent.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ella toronto,, Ontario, Canada 03-16-09
    Ella toronto,, Ontario, Canada 03-16-09 Member Since 2005

    Knowledge is knowing the way. Wisdom is looking for an alternative, more interesting road to get there. Audiobooks are that road.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Pushes the Emotional Envelope"

    I truly enjoy when a book challenges my emotions. A book that can do that, captures me, and I become part of it. It doesnt happen often, but it did happen in The Art of Racing in the Rain. A real human interest story with very high highs and low lows, all told from the view of the family dog. I love it! I am also a long time dog owner and lover and I appreciated all the little nuances that could only come from someone who truly knows how a dog behaves. As for the racing part, I know nothing about racing but it fit the story perfectly and I found I did not need to know a thing about racing or even be interested in it. The story takes you from the depths of despair to the heights of euphoria. It doesnt often get better than this.

    17 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Regina-Audible USA 12-21-13
    Regina-Audible USA 12-21-13 Member Since 2008

    Audible editor and data evangelist. Lover of fiction, classics, celebrity memoirs, and quirky teen novels.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Don't Miss for Dog Owners"

    As a dog parent, I find myself constantly personifying my pet. Garth Stein's brought that concept to lift - dogs are not only part of the family, but have deeply human souls. I fell in love with Enzo from the start. Christopher Evan Welch's narration of life journeys through the eyes of man's best friend will have you laughing and crying from beginning to end. Afterwards, you'll never look at your dog in quite the same way.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Glenn Salinas, CA, United States 07-03-08
    Glenn Salinas, CA, United States 07-03-08 Member Since 2008
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    "I hope there is a sequel to this book"

    This was an excellent narration of a well-written story. Garth Stein uses auto racing as the backdrop yet you don't have to be knowledeable or even care about the sport to enjoy the story. As proof, I played it for my wife on a 5-hr trip to Lake Tahoe. Even though she didn't know most of the famous racers mentioned, she caught the meaning & was eager to resume the story on the return leg of our round-trip. We both teared up near the end as we were hooked by the powerful narration. When they make a movie, I hope it's as gripping as the book.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 717 results PREVIOUS1272NEXT
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  • jane joensen
    7/15/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The dog tells it as it is .."
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Art of Racing in the Rain to be better than the print version?

    I am sure the audio book is better than the printed book. It makes the story come very much to life.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Art of Racing in the Rain?

    I loved the book throughout. My inner child love the idea of the dog telling the story.


    Which character – as performed by Christopher Evan Welch – was your favourite?

    The dog


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I loved the reincarnation towards the end.


    Any additional comments?

    A must read for animal lovers.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Annabel
    Rustington, United Kingdom
    12/1/13
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    Performance
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    "Best accidental find... Ever"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would, and have recommended this to friends and family and local book club. It might be a story through a dog's eyes but its a great study of characters and events.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • lindy
    Cape Town, South Africa
    7/22/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "very enjoyable - beautifully written and read"

    A light-hearted, beautifully written book. Loved the way this dog views the world. Both my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed it (and didn't find the end part weird despite comments to the contrary).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kathryn A. Dean
    Congleton UK
    1/13/13
    Overall
    "Excellent"

    One of the best books I have read for a long time, especially if you are a dog lover, I could see myself as the dog, and I could see my dog in the book also.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A User
    5/31/12
    Overall
    "Great listen-but...."

    This is a great listen with lots of clever observational detail and a cracking storyline.It is very moving in parts without being too "syrupy"-I bet you will be looking at your beloved mutt in a different way!
    Really enjoyed it- but what was the court room Steven Hawkins thing about??-I'm afraid this really jarred with me-was the author looking for a way out?
    Still good stuff, though,if you've got an elderly,wobbly much loved dog,be prepared to shed a tear or two.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Julie
    Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
    11/22/11
    Overall
    "The art of racing...."

    Oh my god, what a book. The narrator is splendid. I didnt know what to expect when this story commenced. It is very very special.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rosemary
    Dunnose Head, Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)
    9/22/11
    Overall
    "So happy that this narrator was chosen"

    Having read and thoroughly enjoyed indeed savoured the printed book, I was a bit nervous about paying for an audio version in case it was a let-down.

    I need not have worried. The narrator does a superb job and is utterly convincing as Enzo, and I didn't want my listening time to end.

    I can totally recommend this audiobook.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ms
    Bedlington, United Kingdom
    7/3/11
    Overall
    "Art of racing in the rain"

    This is the best book I have read in a very very long time thoroughly enjoyed it

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sandra
    redditch, worcestershire, United Kingdom
    5/7/10
    Overall
    "Very moving"

    This story made me cry.... Am I just soppy or can an writer just sometimes write so well that you forget you are listening to fiction . I challenge anyone who has owned and mourned the loss of the family pet not to be moved by this storey . If you liked Marley and Me by John Grogan you really should listen to this the twist is this gem is written from the point of view of Enzo who is the family dog. Listen and enjoy just keep the tissues handy for the end .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Thierry
    United Kingdom
    5/26/09
    Overall
    "Enjoy the ride and stop being cynical...."

    I utterely disagree with the previous review. This book is a masterpiece which gently, but very surely, captivate your imagination and after 30 minutes, become impossible to stop listening to. I am a 46 years old man "tough" with tatooes and all. "Marley and me", moved me, "The Art of Racing in the Rain" made me cry as well as laugh. Not only because it was about one dog, but also because it was about the trials of life of his "friend", not JUST about a dog. Brilliant. The only criticism, if I may, is that I now have started to have conversations with my two labradors!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 11 results PREVIOUS12NEXT

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