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Wallace: The Underdog Who Conquered a Sport, Saved a Marriage, and… (edition 2012)

by Jim Gorant

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5623210,933 (3.67)10
Member:janesville
Title:Wallace: The Underdog Who Conquered a Sport, Saved a Marriage, and Championed Pit Bulls--One Flying Disc at a Time
Authors:Jim Gorant
Info:Gotham (2012), Hardcover, 256 pages
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Wallace: The Underdog Who Conquered a Sport, Saved a Marriage, and Championed Pit Bulls--One Flying Disc at a Time by Jim Gorant

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I think "The Underdog Who Conquered a Sport, Saved a Marriage, and Championed Pit Bulls — One Flying Disc" is probably the best subtitle of all time, but it doesn't address the aspect of Wallace’s story that I most relate to. Wallace started out dog aggressive. Maybe he was just experiencing barrier frustration when he lashed out at other dogs while in the shelter, but he was in danger of being euthanized. Lucky for Wallace, Roo and Clara Yori stood up for him.

By channeling Wallace’s drive into flying disc, Roo Yori effectively gave his dog a “job,” something trainers will tell you dogs need to keep them from developing bad habits and behavior problems. From that point on, Wallace seems never to have another aggressive episode.

Another aspect of Wallace’s story that resonated with me is that even when it seemed like the sport was rough on Wallace’s body, Yori kept playing disc with him. Yori recognized that Wallace’s love of/drive for the disc was so strong, that Wallace would play long after the lights at the park went out. ( )
  keneumey | Jun 4, 2014 |
I had put off reading this book because I thought it would be boring. I was wrong. I really liked this book... it dragged in parts and the "fist pumping" stories just didn't hold me, but overall this was a really enjoyable book. Excellent narrator too. ( )
  marshapetry | Jan 13, 2014 |
I usually love animal books, especially anything about dogs, but this just didn't thrill me. I guess maybe because I follow Wallace on facebook, so I know that there is sooooo much more to this dog than just being a frisbee champion. I also didn't care how Clara was portrayed - Not a very nice representation in my opionion. I've read another book by this author and enjoyed it but this one was not one of my favorites. ( )
  ginger72 | Sep 24, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I enjoyed this story about a very loveable pup who just needed a chance to enjoy life. The story seemed a little stretched to make a full book, but everyone loves a good underdog story. I enjoyed the fact that Wallace wasn't a perfect dog, or perfect for his chosen sport, we all strive to improve and push our boundaries. If you like stories about dogs and the people they own, you'll enjoy it. ;) ( )
  cottongirl7 | Apr 19, 2013 |
Having been in dog and cat rescue for 15+ years now (foster care, adoptions, screening, on the board of the humane association as a lawyer, etc.), I tend to avoid animal books like the plague. That said, something about Wallace's photo (and having chosen the topic "animal story" for my library's Winter reading program), made me give this one a go. I am so glad I did. While this is an amazing rags to riches story for this spirited pup, it is also about the bond we share with special animals in our lives. I like how Wallace was portrayed very honestly. He was not an easy dog, but so can be said of many dogs, many breeds. He just has a zest for life in a different stratosphere from many dogs. I give Roo and Carla a LOT of credit. Few would have taken on such a challenge, but they did so with love and hope. I loved Roo's ingenuity working through what Wallace's needs were, and meeting them. That Wallace was a Pit Bull almost was an aside as the book moved along. And I think, that was kinda the point. But it was a good education, for those not in rescue/shelter work, how horribly Pit Bulls do languish in shelters and rescue programs. Few folks want to give them a chance. In our program, we know if we take in a Pit, it will be months before it is adopted - if it is a black or brindle male - tack on even more time. Prejudice abounds, in breed and color(s). So the reality for this breed is just grim and Wallace's campaign of life really does raise needed awareness. They are all individuals. All the disc dog stuff was just awesome to read and learn about too. Highly recommended! ( )
  CarolynSchroeder | Jan 26, 2013 |
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They arrived shortly after noon, with fishing gear, a cooler and a six-pack in tow.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Today, Wallace is a champion; but in the summer of 2005, he was living in a shelter, a refugee from a suspicious pit-bull breeding operation. Then Andrew "Roo" Yori entered the picture. A scientist and shelter volunteer, Roo could immediately see that Wallace was something special. When Roo learned that Wallace was about to be put down, he and his wife frantically fought to keep Wallace alive until they could adopt him, even though they already had two dogs. Once Wallace made it home, Roo knew the dog needed a mission, and serendipity led them to the world of competitive dog Frisbee. Pit bulls are everything that most Frisbee dogs are not, but that was fine with Roo because part of his mission was to change people's minds about pit bulls. Overcoming everything from injuries to prejudice against the breed, the unlikely pair persevered to become world champions.… (more)

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An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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