So I spent all my free time yesterday reading The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein and I must say I thoroughly enjoyed the ride. The story was good, but the point of view in which the story was told is what makes this book unforgetable. When I realized that the whole story was told through the eyes of a dog named Enzo I instantly fell in love. The Art of Racing in the Rain could have been narrated by any other character and it would have been just another story that I would have soon forgotten but because it was a canine narration this story is going to stick with me for awhile.
Enzo is the sweet canine and the constant companion of Denny Swift an up and coming race car driver. When we meet Enzo for the first time he is planning the events that will ultimately take him to the vet to be put down. Very sad I know, but Enzo is ready to leave this world as a very old dog with bad hips and be reincarnated as a human (a conclusion he comes upon from watching too much day time TV, especially National Geographic-so it must be true!). And as Denny makes that horrible phone call to the vet that we all dread to have to make someday, Enzo starts to recall his life with Denny and his family and the rocky road they had to travel. We get to see and understand how it must be to be a dog. How frustrating it is to not have a voice to tell your human that someone is chronically sick or someone is untrustworthy or someone did something wrong. How much he loves his companions and wants only to protect them from what ever frightens or threatens them (possessed zebras included). To remain loyal and give unconditional love. Enzo stays Denny's steadfast companion through the loss of his wife, the conviction of a crime he did not commit, and the fight for custody of his daughter. Through all the ups and downs Enzo is the one at Denny's side giving him unconditional love and comfort.
I have a sweet pup named Martini (thats her to the right) so I could empathize with Denny every time he drew comfort from Enzo. I understand how it is to love a dog just like as you would love a human, so to be put in the mind of a dog for a few hours made me understand what Martini must think of me! While I was reading The Art of Racing in the Rain I would stop every once in a while to look down at Martini and ask if she liked watching TV or if she could understand what I was saying, I was only answered with a knowing look and a few thumps of her tail, I don't know exactly what that meant but as Enzo says "Gestures are all I have."
P.S. They are making the book into a movie! Woohoo! Staring McDreamy (Patrick Dempsey). Due to release in 2012.
The Art of Racing in the Rain
by Garth Stein
If you like this book you will love: Marley and Me by John Grogen