- Audio CD: 10 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio; Unabridged edition (September 27, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1442344962
- ISBN-13: 978-1442344969
- Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.8 x 5.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 262 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #521,184 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Rin Tin Tin: The Life and the Legend Audio CD – Audiobook, CD, Unabridged
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"Rin Tin Tin was more than a dog. He embodied the core paradoxes of the American ideal: He was a loner who was also a faithful companion, a brave fighter who was also vulnerable. I was astonished to learn from this delightful book that he has existed for eleven generations over a century. By chronicling his amazing ups and downs, Susan Orlean has produced a hugely entertaining and unforgettable reading experience." --Walter Isaacson, author of "Benjamin Franklin "and "Einstein"
"[Orlean] combines all her skills and passions in this astonishing story . . . A terrific dog's tale that will make readers sit up and beg for more." --"Kirkus Reviews" (starred review)
"Not only does Susan Orlean give us a fascinating and big-hearted account of all the many incarnations of Rin Tin Tin, she shows us the ever-changing role of American dogs in times of war and peace. This book is for anyone who has ever had a dog or loved a dog or watched a dog on television or thought their dog could be a movie star. In short--everyone." --Ann Patchett, author of "State of Wonder" and "Bel Canto"
"Stirring . . . A tale of passion and dedication overcoming adversity. . . . Even readers coming to Rin Tin Tin for the first time will find it difficult to refrain from joining Duncan in his hope that Rin Tin Tin's legacy will 'go on forever.'" --"Publishers Weekly"
"Move over Seabiscuit, Rin Tin Tin will be the most-talked-about animal hero of the year and beyond. . . A spectacularly compelling portrait . . . Engrossing, dynamic, and affecting." --"Booklist" (starred review)
"Magnificent." --"Vanity Fair"
"A must-read book that is both an excellent piece of cultural history and a remarkable story of the animal-human bond." --"The Christian Science Monitor"
"Susan Orlean has fashioned a masterpiece of reporting and storytelling, some of it quite personal and all of it compelling. Animal-related books have always peppered best-seller lists--"Seabiscuit" comes quickly to mind--and this one will top such lists. It deserves to, and also to work its way into millions of hearts and minds. . . . [Carl] Sandburg called Rin Tin Tin 'thrillingly intelligent' and 'phenomenal.' The same can be said for this remarkable book." --"Chicago Tribune"
"Orlean relates the histories of the original Rin Tin Tin and his various successors with her customary eye for captivating detail." --"Entertainment Weekly"
"I adored this book. It""weaves history, war, show business, humanity, wit, and grace into an incredible story about America, the human-animal bond, and the countless ways we would be lost without dogs by our sides, on our screens, and in our books. This is the story Susan Orlean was born to tell--it's filled with amazing characters, reporting, and writing." --Rebecca Skloot, author of "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks"""
About the Author
Susan Orlean has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1992. She is the author of seven books, including Rin Tin Tin, Saturday Night, and The Orchid Thief, which was made into the Academy Award–winning film Adaptation. She lives with her family and her animals in upstate New York and may be reached at SusanOrlean.com and Twitter.com/SusanOrlean.
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I bought the book because of all the great reviews. No one said it would be dull as dirt. I love German Shepherds and have had many, so, I thought this would be a good book for me. It really gets hard to take when the author puts herself into the story. The ending is supposed to be a tearjerker, about how she almost gets a puppy for herself. I was unmoved to say the least. By then I just couldn't wait to be done with the book. She took an interesting story and beat the life out of it. Don't waste your time or money. Just get a GS puppy instead.
Duncan and “Rinty” make the transition from silent films to the “talkies” and much later to TV when that new and startling medium makes its appearance in the late 1940s and early 1950s. The companies that sponsored such shows as Rin Tin Tin and Lassie were quick to capitalize on the merchandizing possibilities and wasted no time creating food, uniforms, “authentic dog souvenirs” and assorted trinkets that could be sold to the families of child viewers of the shows.
Later in life Lee Duncan seems to be a flawed character, relating only to Rinty and the dog’s prodigy instead of his wife and daughter. He has an elaborate “memory room” filled with news clippings to which he can retreat and relive those old times where he had fame and fortune with his beloved dog.
Near the end of the book, we learn what happened to the woman who took over the Rin Tin Tin franchise of raising and training descendants of the original dog and the folks in Hollywood who never gave up hope of filming that final and all-encompassing Rinty masterpiece. The lawsuits fly fast and furious and, as usually is the case, only the lawyers are making out like bandits.
Nevertheless, it’s a warm and inspiring story. Everyone who loves dogs (like I do) would be well served to read and enjoy this book.
This is a remarkable, compelling, exhaustive history of possibly the greatest legend ever to exist.
I agree with other reviewers that the first third of this book is the most gripping. The writer could have stopped their and had an intensely popular fan book. But, it is probably the second two-thirds that gives this work its greatest value.
Initially, I winced when Ms Orleans touched upon such topics as Nazi Germany and the holocaust, or upon the discussion of Bert Leonard and Daphne and so on. But then I realized that had she not included the bits she did (prompted by an entry in Anne Franke's diary about Rin-Tin-Tin), I likely never would have learned of Hitler's crazy contradiction regarding his duplicity in abhoring animal cruelty while murdering human beings.
Nor would I have revisited Corriganville, an area between Chatsworth and Simi Valley that was used in so many Western TV series and movies. More importantly, and this was unfortunately not included in this book, a small part of this was used as a base camp by the notorious Manson Family.
As the book came to a close I teared up in memory of my lost youth recounting the legend of the one real dog that happened to become the founding member of the greatest animal dynasty ever to rule Hollywood.
I'm tempted to write much on my review of this wonderful history not only of the German Shepherd, Lee Duncan, Bert Leonard and Hollywood, but I won't. I will only state this as evidence of just how valuable I find this story: after completing the audiobook (bought from audible.com), I decided to also purchase the $11.99 Kindle version through Amazon.com. If that is crazy, consider me to be eligible to join Susan Orlean, Daphne Hereford, Bert Leonard and Lee Duncan in the Rin Tin Tin fan club.
I think my next female dog, regardless of breed, will be named Nannette.