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Comments by Laura Hillenbrand on Wednesday, August 22, 2001 at 04:31 IP Logged
FROM THE AUTHOR: For those of you who are interested, ABC's Good Morning America show will be airing a lengthy profile of Seabiscuit and me on the morning of Friday, August 24. Tune in! Thanks for all your support!
USA

Comments by Heather Henderson on Wednesday, August 22, 2001 at 00:50 IP Logged
I absolutely loved your book. I have not read a novel in over 8 years (since giving birth to my son), and this one I could not put down! Read 'til into the night. I am so captivated by SEABISCUIT and want to read/know more about him. What a sweet story, and you have done a supurb job of telling his tale. Thanks for doing such a great job. I cannot wait until the movie comes out! Call me forever a Seabiscuit Fan!
St. Ann, MO USA

Comments by judith on Wednesday, August 22, 2001 at 00:03 IP Logged
Wow!!! I don't ride, but do go to the track a few times a year. This was better than any mystery I've read and want to thank you for the pleasure of being introduced to Seabiscuit. Stay close to that movie to make sure they follow your story. I'll wait for it. Judy
East Quogue, NY USA

Comments by Mark Roessel on Tuesday, August 21, 2001 at 09:41 IP Logged
I admit that I had no intention of reading your book. My sister-in-law sent it to me for my birthday with a cryptic note that she remembered me talking about horse racing when we were on vacation in 1981. I did not remember the conversation (no surprise) and although there was a time when I did occasionally go to the race track, I stopped going years ago. So I was surprised at this gift and thought to myself, well at least it's not a shirt or tie that I would never wear. I try to read for pleasure but am afraid I don't have much time for it. The last book I had read was Founding Brothers by Ellis (a truly brilliant work). Before that I had read "U.S. Grant's memoirs", "Churchill" by Martin Gilbert and "No Ordinary Time" by Doris Kearns Goodwin. A book about a horse was not high on my reading list and the book sat for some time in my den. One nite when I thought I might enjoy a change and had some time after finishing the paper I picked up Seabiscuit. I read it straight through. Now, I am taking the time to write just to say; Nice Work, I enjoyed Seabiscuit thoroughly. As well written and researched as any other book that I have read.
Cambridge, MA USA

Comments by bill steen on Tuesday, August 21, 2001 at 08:20 IP Logged
Bravo Ms. Hillenbrand and long live Seabiscuit.
crofton, md USA

Comments by Chris Peart on Tuesday, August 21, 2001 at 07:07 IP Logged
Dear Laura and fellow readers, I feel that "Seabiscuit" captures all of the great things we know about racing; and reminds us of all those we forgot. What other sport gives us crooked-legged heroes? What other animal transcends social class like a racehorse does? One of the greatest poets my country has produced; A.B. Patterson, put it this way: "There are a great many things in life that cannot be explained, and a great racehorse is one of them." How true, when we reflect on the career and the begetting of Seabisucuit. There was a similar style of horse that was bred and trained in New Zealand a few years back by the name of Rough Habit. He came to Australia 6 seasons on end and was simply too good for our best horses. He carried big weights and won on right and left-handed tracks in wet and on hard tracks over distances from 6 to 12 furlongs. Reading "Seabisucuit" reminds me alot of watching Rough Habit race. Perhaps Rough Habit's only poor run was when he was placed at the tail of the field in the Hollywood Gold Cup the year Best Pal won; in about 1993, I think. He just didn't like your American horses kicking dirt in his face. On turf, maybe it would have been another story, but he did his best anyway. Congratulations to Laura, and I look forward to the movie with great anticipation. Maybe Rough Habit could star as The Biscuit? You'd have to paint over his crooked blaze... Regards, Chris Peart.
Bolton Point, NSW Australia

Comments by Dick & Carol Carlson on Tuesday, August 21, 2001 at 04:14 IP Logged
Laura: I bought this book for my husband's 76th birthday --he's an avid horserace person. I saw you on "The Early Show" about this book and FLIPPED, because I knew he would think this the best gift EVER! Little did I know that I too would read, with excitement, the book as well. Reading the accounts of the races themselves was as thrilling as being there in person. Knowing the stories behind Seabiscuit's owner, trainer, and jockeys enhanced the story three-fold. We are telling everyone we know to BUY this BOOK and enjoy your stunning writing abilities. Thank you! :-)
Vancouver, WA USA

Comments by Steve Bland on Tuesday, August 21, 2001 at 03:29 IP Logged
I may read one book in 5 years, but your book on Seabiscuit I had trouble puttingdown. What a fantastic story. Do you know when the movie is planned to be finished? Thank you for such good writing on such a grat subject. Steve frm Ct.
USA

Comments by Bill Brinson on Tuesday, August 21, 2001 at 03:17 IP Logged
Laura: The book was wonderful. My father was a jockey who was starting his career in the same timeframe as the book. I later grew up around the racetrack when he retired from racing to become a outrider then a track official. Reading your book was like being back at the racetrack of my youth hearing all the stories of the horses and meeting all the wonderful characters. After reading the book I bought a copy for my father and told him there was not a better place to grow up than around the racetrack. Thanks again.
Edwardsville, Il. USA

Comments by Jane McKeel on Tuesday, August 21, 2001 at 03:03 IP Logged
Dear Laura, I belong to a reading group that meets once a month at our local library to discuss a book of our choice.This month we meet on August 28 to discuss SEA BISCUIT.I cannot express adequately how much I enjoyed your book.I will be singing your praises every chance I get. I would be thrilled if you would send me an E-Mail to share with the group concerning you and SEA BISCUIT. Whatever Thank You! Best Wishes! Jane Mckeel 1109 S. Ricky Rd. Kennett,MO 63857
Kennett, MO USA

Comments by Gloria O'Donohoe on Tuesday, August 21, 2001 at 02:46 IP Logged
Unamious!! our senior citizen book club loved the book. Outstanding writing and a story we could all relate to in some way as we were all alive when the Buiscuit was. Our club likes to know more about our authors and I am writing to ask if you could tell us some more about you. When did you get interested in horses? Is some on in your family in the business? Do you ride? Any anything else you would share with us to truly complete the picture. Sorry most of us missed the interview on Book Notes and hope they will do it again. It would be great if they could send a tape around to the book clubs. I personally want to comment on how warm, and impressed I was with the way you thanked all the people you interviewed. I felt like I was right there with you. I have one question. How did Seabiscuit get his name? How are names picked for race horses? This will be on our top ten list for years to come. Thank you for writing it and thank your family for supporting you. Gloria O'Donohoe
Burbank , CA USA

Comments by Arla Altman on Monday, August 20, 2001 at 05:39 IP Logged
It will be hard to top this story! I am in awe of your extensive research and how you wove it together into a true spellbinding tale. I am a fan of Saratoga Race Course and couldn't stop thinking about all the horses that race throughout America and end their careers, shall we say, unceremoniously. What really made this book was the human devotion and love for the horse, his achievements being secondary. And his effect on those close to him - giving them hope, amusement and affection. Even if Seabiscuit hadn't won Santa Anita, I imagine Howard would have retired the horse to the same high quality of life on his ranch. I am so glad this horse that worked so hard for its owners was treated with dignity. Thank you for memorializing one of the greats.
Ellicott City , MD USA

Comments by patricia m. geary on Monday, August 20, 2001 at 03:36 IP Logged
Laura, I have just read every single comment. My you must be absolutely overwhelmed by the out pouring of peoples love for you, your body of work and The Biscuit and his world... I can not begin to express my awe at your devotion in creating this masterpiece. This a is a subject I know nothing about. My relatonship with anything "horsey" is riding the Up Country in Maui on vacation...and one horse race 25 years ago.. I opened your book and I left this earthly bound, traveled the trains and felt the mudon my face, heard the clacking on the tracks, felt the pain and guilt of keeping secrets, frustrated by countless set backs and then the electric rush and he thrill of winning. I was there, it was magical, I saw it all,heard the roaring cheers an tasted the champagne. You will win that ole' Pulitzer, You have arrived and to be reckon with !!!!!
Crockett, CA United States of America

Comments by Carole Hughes on Monday, August 20, 2001 at 02:30 IP Logged
Ms. Hildenbrand, I am only about 100 pages into your most wonderful book, but I absolutely love it. I was born in 1937 and at the age of nine in January 1946, my family and I visited Ridgewood in Willits, CA and had the great pleasure of actually seeing Seabiscuit at his final home. As I began to read your book, I realized that I had an old photo of myself taken at Ridgewood. It means so much more to me now. I can't wait to continue my journey through your book and I will be sad when the story has ended. Thank you for giving us such a wonderful trip into the life of a wonderful racehorse and all those people who made his life so special and helped him reach his potential.
Alexandria, VA USA

Comments by Justus Bauschinger on Monday, August 20, 2001 at 01:29 IP Logged
Great Book.., Thank you! Your appearance on CSPAN-2's Book- TV provoked me to immediately get on the web and purchase your wonderful and extraordinary Seabiscuit narrative. It read so easily and fast, that I have a deep vacuum to fill now that the book has been devoured. You and William Nack have transformed me with your horse writing. (Too bad you couldn't get Carroll Bollard to direct the film)! Thanks again for a wonderful experience and a sleepless night.
Yerington, NV USA

Comments by Mark Polseno on Sunday, August 19, 2001 at 09:09 IP Logged
I just finished your book and I must say that it was fantastic. I am not much of a racehorse fan but I sure learned alot. You beutifully explained the lives of these hero's of sports. I was at the edge of my seat during the raceing chapters. Thanks again for a great novel. I can't wait to see the movie!
Beacon Falls, CT USA

Comments by JAMES P. LAPOLLA on Sunday, August 19, 2001 at 08:43 IP Logged
WONDERFUL BOOK. MASTERFULLY WRITTEN
ST. PETERSBURG, FL USA

Comments by Melissa Luce on Sunday, August 19, 2001 at 03:40 IP Logged
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, I too just finished reading today your outstanding biography of Seabiscuit. I have been an avid reader since childhood and, in particular, adore non-fiction and biographies. "Seabiscuit" is the best book I have read in ages and a true "page-turner." You have captured in words the heart and soul of an era as well as the heart, soul, courage, and sacrifice of the persons who loved and assisted this astonishing horse and captured the essence of Seabiscuit himself. Thank you for this fabulous journey - I felt like I was there!
Los Gatos, CA USA

Comments by Elisa Auckly on Sunday, August 19, 2001 at 03:25 IP Logged
This is such a great book!! I am a horse fanatic, and this book was a dream to read. Laura, thanks for brining the legend of Seabiscuit to life. It's like reading the Blank Stallion, only better, because it's real!
Kansas City, MO USA

Comments by Susan Rebert on Sunday, August 19, 2001 at 02:38 IP Logged
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, I recently most enjoyed your thrilling tale of the wonderful Seabiscuit. I have a personal connection to your story. My grandfather, Orville Roscoe Vaughn, was a practicing attorney in San Francisco during that era, and was C.S. Howard's attorney. My father recently passed away, but before he did, gave me some memorabilia. Included were several Seabiscuit Christmas cards, stationery from one of Mr. Howard's car dealerships, my grandfather's admittance as a "Kentucky Colonel",(by the governor with the sublimely corn pone name of "Ruby Lafoon") with invitations to a subsequent big Southern barbeque, and also, oddly, a copy of C.S.'s last will and testament. Although my father did speak of Mr. Howard, indeed, he almost drowned in the estate's pool while his attorney father was meeting with C.S, and had to be fished out by the butler, he never quite told me the whole story of Seabiscuit. But around the house there were Seabiscuit objects-- Seabiscuit with his jockey, a brass representation or Seabiscuit, and some bookends of the famous horse's head wearing his requisite red and white "blinders". Anyway, thank you for fleshing out the story for me, and making that era come alive for me...it was a most enjoyable trip! Best Regards, Susan Rebert
Hillsborough, CA USA

Comments by Albert Zayat on Sunday, August 19, 2001 at 01:46 IP Logged
While trying to understand why my son was having some difficulty in school I learned the signs/symptoms of ADD. I also realized at that point that I probably had it to some degree. This is important because it is probably responsible for the reason I watch way too much TV and read too little. I have alot of what I call 50 pagers on the shelf. Yup, books that I started and just couldn't get past the first 50 pages before becoming bored with them and accepting the the fact the were headed to book pergatory. Inexplicably my mother, who is also an author, and is a 77 grey haired little old lady living in sunny south Fla., sent me your book about Seabisciut for my fifty-first birthday. Dumfounded, I called and thanked her for her gift but asked why she did this knowing that I wasn't an avid reader. I should note here that I am not an illiterate-I have to read a great deal for business but that is required. In any event she answered by saying she had seen it in Barnes and Noble and knew it was on the "NYT Best (should have been Beast in this case)Seller List" and thought I would like it. The fact that it was on sale my also have contributed to here decision..... The book sat on my coffee/cocktail table (depends upon the time of day) for weeks. Finally recognizing that I have two avid readers in my office I gave it to them to read as a friendly gesture. They both read it and it was returned to me with great thanks and high praise-by the way do I owe you anything for loaning the book out??? "Now what" I said to myself? With the awareness of my less than succesfull "track record" of completing reading tasks I finally mustered up enough courage to open the cover of yet another hard bound book, not pulp fiction, your book about Seabiscuit! It was engrossing from the first moment my eyes rested on the first page. Your ability to use your well honed craft of writing describing the remarkable events that took place and the cast of characters that played them out is, well-----remarkable. My attention issues abated completely and I was off like Seabisciut going"wire to wire". You should be aware that I like story's like this. I love the History Channel. I enjoy the reounting of the human drama-of stuggle -failure and then success. It could be about sport, as you have so eloquently have done, or in any of the other significant endevors man has undertaken. In your book you have done more than recount the events. You have successfully reminded us of the many aged old proverbs that remind us not to quit! Seabiscuit was a great horse. My first major awarness of great race horses was Secretariat whom I thought was the greatest of all time but I 'll let the experts decide that. Its not important. Seabiscuit was great for more than just winning-it was how he won! His support staff, shall I say was remarkable-brilliant and lucky.... Your book was a great joy to read! I will never look at a race horse, trainer or jockey the same way. It kept me up reading till 2:00 AM on occasion. I felt my heart pound as you described the drama of the races. I closed the book with a tear in my eye as you aptly described the passing of the Biscuit, his owner, trainer and jockeys. Bitter sweet as all things must and do end..I wished there was more. After completing the book I commented to the others who read it that it should be a movie-(ADD self interest speaking there) Today I was pleased to learn that just such a project is under way...... Thank you P.S. I am not responsible for any missplelling or grammatical errors as the features of a good word proccessor which makes all of us better writers than we actually are, is not available in this format.....
Hackensack, NJ USA

Comments by rob austin on Sunday, August 19, 2001 at 01:19 IP Logged
thrilling. lyrical. i loved it. thanks.
new york, ny USA

Comments by Kevin Gillespie on Sunday, August 19, 2001 at 00:24 IP Logged
There's not much to say that other readers have not expressed. I have been enamored by many racing greats. In fact, my dog, Kinchem, is named after a famous Hungarian horse whose name means " my treasure. This is my first experience with your writing and to be laconic;WOW! I don't know if you have ever written anything about the great Phar Lap if not you should! Your talen and attention to detail would make this reading wonderful. Good luck and congrats.!
woodbine, md USA

Comments by Linda Bush on Saturday, August 18, 2001 at 08:27 IP Logged
Laura: Wednesday morning I cried. I cried for Seabiscuit who led a magical life, who's bones are now buried under a magical oak tree. I cried for Mr. Howard, whose heart broke the day his horse died. I cried for Red Pollard, whose pain in life was never as intense as the pain in his heart when he could not ride the greatest of horses. And I cried for Tom Smith - whose death was largely ignored and his funeral was scantly attended. Don't get me wrong, I cried in celebration of getting to know all these people and of this great horse that I was so unfamiliar with. I hadn't followed horse racing since the 70's when horses like the South American horse, Canero II and the great Secretariat ran. Thank you for his story. Everyone should be reading it.
Pittsburg, KS USA

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