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The Art of Racing in the Rain (2008)

by Garth Stein

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
9,124559694 (4.04)389
Nearing the end of his life, Enzo, a dog with a philosopher's soul, tries to bring together the family, pulled apart by a three year custody battle between daughter Zoe's maternal grandparents and her father Denny, a race car driver.
  1. 70
    A Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron (kaledrina)
    kaledrina: narrated by dog!
  2. 60
    Marley & Me by John Grogan (Trevorlanticism)
  3. 30
    Dog on It by Spencer Quinn (rxtheresa)
    rxtheresa: Written from dog's point of view
  4. 21
    Merle's Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog by Ted Kerasote (kalpitad)
    kalpitad: Although The Art of Racing in the Rain is fiction and Merle's Door is non-fiction, both provide a narrative about the mind and heart of a dog.
  5. 10
    The Dogs of Babel by Carolyn Parkhurst (jbarry)
  6. 00
    Belka, Why Don't You Bark? by Hideo Furukawa (nsblumenfeld)
  7. 00
    A Dog's Life by Peter Mayle (Cecilturtle)
  8. 44
    Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach (Graphirus)
    Graphirus: Life-philosophy explained through action, an activity (flight/car racing)
  9. 11
    One Good Dog by Susan Wilson (hokansonh)
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» See also 389 mentions

English (554)  German (2)  Spanish (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (558)
Showing 1-5 of 554 (next | show all)
I read this when it first came out and liked most of it. Someone recommended it inadvertently, so I read it for the first time in twelve years. When this book gets tired of being really fucking disturbing, it switches to being really fucking boring. Has the author met a dog? They watch TV with their humans on the couch, especially commercials, and go nuts when a dog barks. But nooo, this dog loves the weather channel. Dogs eat blood and sniff infections really hard. The author skipped right over those ones. It's a biological thing, and the author was like nope, not -my- dog. The book just fell apart for me there. This concept could have been way more interesting if the author had injected more realistic dog behaviors in here, or had this be about a bird that got loose instead.. ( )
  iszevthere | Jun 28, 2022 |
I really enjoyed this book. The author has a true talent in pulling the reader into the story. You buy the concept of the dog narrating right from page one. Ezno is a smart, charismatic, and funny narrator. I loved the idea that he saw a documentary that in Mongolia (I think) people believed that dogs got to come back after they die as humans. The family grew on you and the whole story was brilliant. The only flaw for me was there was a hell of a lot of talk about racing the cars and I have about zero interest in cars in general much less racing them. But I never got bored with it. Its a very quick read, but its smart and a great look on humanity. ( )
  banrions | Dec 7, 2021 |
I broke my own personal rule of never reading dog books at work and ended up sniffling on my lunch break when I finished this one. Enzo the dog narrates this at times dark story with great joy. I learned a lot about car racing, a world I'm not familiar with. This would be a great book club selection. ( )
  readingjag | Nov 29, 2021 |
Aborted attempt; hated it ( )
  dualmon | Nov 17, 2021 |
This book is the best of the best. It melts all the comedy, intrigue, sadness. The movie really missed the mark for me. But this book is incredible. The journey you go on with the main character and his dog is long, hard, and has a perfect ending. One of my favorite parts of the character, Denny, is his devotion to everyone in his life. He was put through hell after Eve's death, and he kept fighting. One of my favorite parts of our dog narrator, Enzo, is his description of human things. Somehow Garth Stein was able to perfectly present and convince the reader that he is in fact a dog. Although this book is very sad it also has a lot of engaging qualities to the characters other than their trauma. ( )
  LilySmyth23 | Nov 4, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 554 (next | show all)
Fans of Marley & Me, rejoice.
added by cmwilson101 | editEntertainment Weekly
 
If you've ever wondered what your dog is thinking, Stein's third novel offers an answer. Enzo is a lab terrier mix plucked from a farm outside Seattle to ride shotgun with race car driver Denny Swift as he pursues success on the track and off. Denny meets and marries Eve, has a daughter, Zoë, and risks his savings and his life to make it on the professional racing circuit. Enzo, frustrated by his inability to speak and his lack of opposable thumbs, watches Denny's old racing videos, coins koanlike aphorisms that apply to both driving and life, and hopes for the day when his life as a dog will be over and he can be reborn a man. When Denny hits an extended rough patch, Enzo remains his most steadfast if silent supporter. Enzo is a reliable companion and a likable enough narrator, though the string of Denny's bad luck stories strains believability. Much like Denny, however, Stein is able to salvage some dignity from the over-the-top drama.
added by cmwilson101 | editPublisher's Weekly
 
“I savored Garth Stein’s The Art of Racing in the Rain for many reasons: a dog who speaks, the thrill of competitive racing, a heart-tugging storyline, and--best of all--the fact that it is a meditation on humility and hope in the face of despair.”
added by cmwilson101 | editAmazon.com, Wally Lamb
 

» Add other authors (9 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Stein, Garthprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Welch, Christopher EvanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
"With your mind power, your determination, your instinct and the experience as well, you can fly very high." - Ayrton Senna
Dedication
For Muggs
First words
Gestures are all that I have; sometimes they must be grand in nature.
Quotations
To live every day as if it had been stolen from death, that is how I would like to live. (pg 160; first harper paperback published 2009) ~ Enzo~

She died that night. Her last breath took her soul, I saw it in my dream. I saw her soul leave her body as she exhaled, and then she had no more needs, no more reason; she was released from her body, and, being released, she continued her journey elsewhere, high in the firmament where soul material gathers and plays out all the dreams and joys of which we temporal beings can barely conceive, all the things that are beyond our comprehension, but even so, are not beyond our attainment if we choose to attain them, and believe that we truly can.

In Monglolia, when a dog dies, he is buried high in the hills so people cannot walk on his grave. The dog's master whispers into the dog's ear his wishes that the dog will return as a man in his next life. Then his tail is cut off and put beneath his head, and a piece of meat or fat is placed in his mouth to sustain his soul on its journey; before he is reincarnated, the dog's soul is freed to travel the land, to run across the high desert plains for as long as it would like.
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Disambiguation notice
Please distinguish among The Art of Racing in the Rain (2008), for general audiences; Racing in the Rain: My Life as a Dog (2011), "a special adaptation for young people of the acclaimed New York Times bestselling adult novel The Art of Racing in the Rain"; and Enzo Races in the Rain! (2014), for pre-school to third grade readers. Thank you.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Nearing the end of his life, Enzo, a dog with a philosopher's soul, tries to bring together the family, pulled apart by a three year custody battle between daughter Zoe's maternal grandparents and her father Denny, a race car driver.

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Garth Stein is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

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Garth Stein chatted with LibraryThing members from May 17, 2010 to May 28, 2010. Read the chat.

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