Friday, May 13, 2011

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

Harper Collins, 2008; 321 pages; ISBN  1554681723
My Goodreads Rating: 5 stars

OK, so I admit that I picked up this book because of the dog on the cover.  I am a sucker for Labrador retrievers, and I actually have two lab-mixes at home (their names are Frida and Che, and yes, I cry my eyes out every time I watch Marley and Me or even those Humane Society commercials), so I was very intrigued by the idea of a book told from a dog's perspective.  But Enzo the dog is no ordinary dog.  He is a human soul trapped in a dog's body (for this particular life cycle, according to him).  His owner, a race car driver named Denny, talks to Enzo like he is his pal and he watches TV with him, even leaving it on for him, which is where Enzo learns about the world and of course, about the art of race car driving.  Enzo is a very philosophical soul (that is why he believes in reincarnation, and he is certain that his next life will be as a human being), and he thinks that the techniques that Denny uses on the race track can be applied to every day life.  As Enzo recalls his life with Denny, including many ups and downs (marriage, a child, tragedy, triumph, and the like), he also takes stock on his role in Denny's life and all that he has learned and hopes to learn and do as a human being.  I know the book spent many weeks on the bestseller list, and rightly so.  I'm pretty sure animal lovers (especially dog lovers) will enjoy the story, but I also strongly feel that the book is for everyone, whether or not you have a furry companion at home.  It's smart, funny, sweet, and very honest, and yes, I also cried during this one too.  A highly recommended read.

Photo: From website

1 comment:

  1. I *loved* this book and thought it was better than some other more cheesy animal books. As a side note, I listened to this on audio and it was really well done!