Thank you for visiting Seabiscuit: An American Legend.,
I would enjoy hearing from you if you would like to add to my guestbook.

There are 35780 guestbook entries in 1491 pages and you are on page number 1461

Comments by Ann Louise Host on Thursday, May 17, 2001 at 02:48 IP Logged
Kudos, Laura. This is a fabulous, delightful and beautifully written book that captures all the divine elements of a truly remarkable and awe-inspiring sport. Your passion shines through in the prose.
Chicago, IL USA

Comments by Keith Fahey on Thursday, May 17, 2001 at 02:26 IP Logged
I'm only on page 27 but I'm dazzled by the intensity of your prose. If Tom Smith had a mystical communion with horses, you've tapped into the same spirit of a rare time and unique equestrian world. Literary prizes are superfluous. You've given the country a book to cherish and champion. And, from what I've heard, it couldn't happen to a finer, tougher person. Thank you!
Encino/Tarzana, CA USA

Comments by janet smith-o'brien on Thursday, May 17, 2001 at 02:18 IP Logged
Thank you for a great book. As Dean Beck listed there where three children of Tom Smith and his wife, Janet. My father being Jim Smith. My grand father came from a family of 13 children. If you would ever like any info on him or to see the pictures we have please contact us, we would enjoy sharing these with you.
ca USA

Comments by Don Mezei on Thursday, May 17, 2001 at 00:18 IP Logged
A truly great book. Not just the story, but the writing. A true lyricist. Not regarding CFS, have your mercury fillings replaced with white composite, and eat organic!!! Regards, Don
Victoria, BC Canada

Comments by Eileen O'Sullivan on Thursday, May 17, 2001 at 00:16 IP Logged
Thank you! I just finished it and I can't wipe the smile off of my face. Your book is great cover to cover! I'm recommending it to everyone who will listen. I don't want to lend this treasure to anyone in case I don't get it back (I plan to reread it). You have rekindled the thrill and love of thoroughbred racing for me and I haven't felt this passionate since Secretariat. Please know that you have done a wonderful thing! I'm looking foward to the movie and especially your next book. Best wishes...
New York, NY USA

Comments by Stanley G. Corp on Thursday, May 17, 2001 at 00:01 IP Logged
I forgot to add this in my other comments, Why no past performance record for Seabiscuit? Is one available? Again your book was "Super". I will wait about two weeks and then read it again.
Sparks , NV USA

Comments by Bill Navarre on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 09:34 IP Logged
Ms Hillenbrand, Absolutely enjoyed your writing! I have been a horseman for a number of years and read many books and magazines over that time. Prior to your publication I thought "Ruffian-Burning From the Start" was the best autobiographical depiction. Your book beats that one by several lengths. Look forward to seeing the movie when it releases. Bill Navarre-Charlotte, NC
CHARLOTTE, NC USA

Comments by Samantha on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 08:43 IP Logged
Dear Laura: It was a pleasure reading about you in the Washington Post (3/9/01). I've been putting off emailing you until the guestbook entries slowed down - oh well! Your guestbook reflects the diverse group of individuals you've touched through your writing and story. Anyway, I'm a bit younger than you (mid-20's), but live within the Balto-DC area and have time on my hands (given my similar diagnoses of NMH, CFIDS, POTS). Have found it hard to maintain friendships with earlier peers since this condition makes each day rather unpredictable. Think it's time I found a new cohort of "young warriors" who openly face the challenges of chronic disabilities. I must admit that I know very little of equines or historic novels - I studied business and worked in non-profit organizations serving high-risk youth. I'd enjoy chatting or hanging out sometime when you are less busy (feel free to file away my email address for a rainy day). Congratulations on your book - and thank-you for telling the true story about your life challenges. The articles and radio interviews not only educated many about our condition, but also validated what we’re going through. Sincerely, Samantha
MD USA

Comments by Greg Marlowe on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 07:32 IP Logged
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, What an incredibly spendid accomplishment. Ingesting and savoring ever word of your magnum opus represented the most emotional reading experience of my life. At many points in the text I found tears flowing down my face. Many years ago I owned and bred a few thoroughbreds. One offspring I managed get to the races in California. He even won. Later, in the mid-1980s, I spent about one year working with thoroughbreds in Lexington, Kentucky. During all those years I had the privilege of seeing some terrific horses run. Previously, I had concluded that no other horse in American racing history had more heart and determination than Affirmed. And I believed that the two overall best horses I saw run were Ruffian and Secretariat. But how wrong I was! Since just finishing your beautifully written book, a lovely birthday present from my mother, I have totally changed my belief. There is not a doubt in my mind but what Seabiscuit was and remains the greatest and most game thoroughbred that ever put its head through a bridle. What also made the book so special to me stems from the fact that at one time I had occasion to talk briefly (while looking for a trainer) with both Keith Stucki and Leonard Dorfman. And Farrell Jones was one of the best and most visible trainers from the 1960s on in the So. Calif. racing circuit. I had no idea that both Stucki and Jones were exercise riders for "the Biscuit." In sum, please accept my deep appreciation for writing this wonderful book. I have told several people to read it, including staff at the local library. They also just ordered its purchase based upon my recommendation. Let's hope "Hollywood" does justice to the film version of your awesome book. Sincerely, Greg Marlowe
Silverton, OR USA

Comments by Jan Spielberger on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 06:38 IP Logged
WOW! There's almost nothing more than can be said - it seems everyone else has said it all. This was a great book - I couldn't put it down. I have been horse crazy all my life. I remember making my Dad buy pouches of pipe tobacco so I could submit names in the hope of winning a Thoroughbred colt. He did it, even though he didn't smoke a pipe, because he knew how much I wanted to win one of those horses. It wasn't until I was 32 that I was given an older Thoroughbred and found out how naturally competitive they are. Teaching him to trail ride after years of being a racer and jumper was an experience, and even though he wasn't very fast any more, woe be to any other horse we were riding with. He always had to be in front, and jigged something awful if he was behind. In the end I found it was easier to ride him alone if I wanted any peace. He's been gone awhile, and although my current horse is an Arab/Quarter who is very sweet (and slow), I certainly miss my exciting rides with Beau. They are wonderful animals and you perfectly captured the connection between Seabiscuit and the people who loved him. One of my favorite photos was of Mr. & Mrs. Howard with him at their ranch - they cared about the horse even after he stopped racing!
San Francisco, CA USA

Comments by Claire De Camp on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 05:45 IP Logged
I recently read that you are searching for your next project after the tremendous success of Seabiscuit, which I am currently reading and totally engrossed in. In recent months, I purchased one of the few descendants of the incredibly magnificent Olympic German Event stallions, Volturno, who was tragically and mysteriously killed while in quarantine, after being imported to the U.S. for breeding purposes. An article on his life and death was published in EQUUS, in volume 135. I have been researching his career, life, and his tragic death due to an unexplained connection that has not only haunted me, but has inspired me to detail as many facts as possible, which has led me to many conversations with the people who were intimately involved with him and his German owner. Included in this group was the woman who intended to breed him in the U.S. and was with him when he died, and who detailed the accounts of what ensued after his death with the FBI investigation. This was a horse that was considered by everyone that knew him as one of the greatest champions in the world of Eventing and he became an inspiration to so many during his life and after his death. He is one of the only Event horses that is burined at the Kentucky Horse Park. I realize that your battle with CFS has limited you to the amount of research you can do at this time, but I am inquiring if you would be interested in hearing more about the research that I have already done, in hopes of you becoming interested in the story for a future project or article. I heard that someone was thinking of approaching the British writer, Dick Francis with the story, but I truly feel that you are the writer for this incredible tale. I have been a rider and competitor all my life, and I don't beleive I have ever been so touched or moved by the story you did on Seabiscuit and the one that you may see in Volturno. Please contact me at this e-mail address. P.S. Everything that has been laid before me and the course of events and coincidences regarding the information I have gathered, has been a story in itself. I will close by sharing with you that the barn where I learned to ride at age 8 in Kansas City, was the breeding farm, training facility and the gravesite of the 1938 Kentucky Derby winner, Larwin! How is that for a coincidence! The only Kansas-bred Derby winner ever! His gravesite is now smack-down in the middle of a subdivision, whose home owners probably don't even know what leg of the Triple Crown the Derby is! Hope to hear from you and congratulations on your success! Claire De Camp
Westwood, KS USA

Comments by R. D. Rosen on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 04:04 IP Logged
DEAR MS. HILLENBRAND: AS A WRITER OF MYSTERY NOVELS OFTEN SET IN THE WORLD OF SPORTS, I FOUND YOUR BOOK TRANSCENDENT IN ITS NARRATIVE SKILL, ITS PURE WRITING, ITS DETAIL, AND PASSION. THERE'S NO SUBSTITUTE FOR HARD WORK, IN WRITING OR CREATING A CHAMPION. I'VE NEVER SEEN A HORSE RACE, NOR READ A BOOK ON THE SUBJECT BEFORE YOURS--SO THANK YOU FOR THE GIFT OF REVEALING A NEW WORLD TO ME. BUT YOU'VE SO CLEARLY ACHIEVED MORE THAN WRITE A LASTING BOOK ABOUT HORSE RACING; YOU'VE TOLD A TIMELESS AND TOUCHING STORY ABOUT THE RANDOM CONVERGENCE OF A FEW TROUBLED AND OBSCURE MEN WHO WERE ABLE, THROUGH A HOMELY HORSE, TO MANIFEST THEIR OWN GREATNESS. NO WONDER YOU'VE RECEIVED SO MUCH WELL-DESERVED PRAISE, AND I'M PLEASED TO ADD MINE.
NY, NY USA

Comments by shirley forbes on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 02:14 IP Logged
Ms Hillenbrand: I am half-way through your great book, and am almost afraid to go on. What if Seabiscuit loses to War Admiral? I don't think I could bear it. I have read some of the comments about your book on the web site, and wonder what I can add. All the things I have been thinking as I read have already been said: "It's the best book I have ever read; I don't want it to end." As I read about Jockey Pollard's accident on Fair Knightess tears streamed down my face for both man and horse. How wonderful to find them back on the track. I lived in Bowie, MD for 11 years and absorbed some of the thoroughbred racing history there, even though I suppose I could be termed a westerner (N.Dak. and WI) and I have raised and ridden Quarter Horses. But there is nothing that is more beautiful and more certain to bring tears to my eyes than to watch those beautiful thoroughbreds as they fly down the track. Your book captures all of it. Much success to you. I wish I could see you at the Preakness this Saturday. Sincerely, Shirley Forbes
Denmark, WI USA

Comments by Rebecca Burkhart on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 02:01 IP Logged
As a child I read and reread a book called "Come On, Seabiscuit" by Ralph Moody. I loved the story of the little "Cinderella" horse and the three people who believed in him. Your book brought back so many wonderful memories of that book, plus it fleshed out the story in ways I can appreciate as an adult. I felt as if I were renewing acquaintance with old friends, while getting to know them better. Thanks for a wonderful book!
Hopatcong, NJ USA

Comments by Rachel Brinkerhoff on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at 00:14 IP Logged
Laura, I just finished the book and I wished I hadn't, what a wonderful, inspiring story, I wish it would continue. Growing up (I'm in my early 20's) I was in love with horses and still am to this day. I think I learned to draw them before I could write. I grew up reading Walter Farley's Black Stallion books and I would watch every horse race I could. For a while (I guess when I was in high school and through college until this year) I kind of moved away from horseracing, but for some reason this year's Kentucky Derby relit that spark for me. I saw that in the SF Chronicle on Sunday Seabiscuit was listed as the #1 Nonfiction Book. I knew vaguely who Seabiscuit was and decided that I wanted to read it, though I needed to do a lot of reading for classes. Well those classes just have to wait. My dreams for my life are now starting to transform (they started right before the Derby, but your book has pushed it along farther). I'm starting to wonder if I should change my major in school to Equine Science (I have two years left in my current major of Landscape Architecture). I don't know if I will change or wait until I graduate and seek a second degree, I will probably do the latter to save my parents grief. But I just want to let you know that I believe that your book is going to be a turning point for me, to do something that I have always wanted to do since I was a child. Thank You for this inspiring read.
San Luis Obispo, CA USA

Comments by Jenice H on Tuesday, May 15, 2001 at 08:45 IP Logged
I would like to be able to contact Laura Hillenbrand about the article that was written about her in US Weely. She makes comment to her CFS and how it has restricted her life. I would like to be able to get her in contact with a research Internal Medicen Doctor that has a wonder treatment for CFS and has treated many patients with this and has wonderful results. If Ms. Hillenbrand would like to talk to me about this she can reach me at the e-mail provided. Thanks.
TX USA

Comments by Marijana Weiner on Tuesday, May 15, 2001 at 00:41 IP Logged
I happened on the tail end of your interview on booktv. I was struck with your reading, with the photos of the horses, and somehow felt the stirring of a dim memory from early childhood, of the name "Seabiscuit" (I was born in 1936). I later saw the book on sale at Costco, of all places, and bought it. I know next to nothing about sports, and certainly not horseracing, but, still only halfway through your book, I am in pig-heaven! It is a wonderful read, I find myself telling stories about Seabisquit, racing, jockeys, the 30s, to anyone who will listen. What a gift you have written! Thank you so much. Marijana B.W.
Los Angeles, CA USA

Comments by MARY DAVIS on Tuesday, May 15, 2001 at 00:07 IP Logged
LAURA, A FABULOUS BOOK! I AM AN AVID READER, OWNER OF A RETIRED THOROUGHBRED, AND A RACING FAN -- AND YOUR BOOK IMMERSED ME IN ALL THAT I LOVE. I, TOO, READ ALOUD TO MY HUSBAND, TEARED UP, AND LAUGHED OUT LOUD. THANK YOU FOR INTRODUCING US TO SUCH A WONDERFUL STORY AND HISTORY.
HICKORY, NC USA

Comments by Carroll D Simpkins on Monday, May 14, 2001 at 09:17 IP Logged
Dear Laura, I commend you for writing one of the truly good books of this or any other decade. You have truly placed yourself in the ranks of legitimately great writers. Thank you for your dedication to this project and for your gift to all of us.
Beckley, wv USA

Comments by Sarah Edwards on Monday, May 14, 2001 at 08:44 IP Logged
Dear Laura, Tom Smith is my great-great grand father on my fathers side,(who bears great resemblance to "SilentTom). I am reading Seabiscuit right now and I can't put it down! My father has always told me stories of his childhood in Southern California at the racetracks with his grandpa Jim, seeing famous people and stories about Tom and Seabiscuit. We have some race memorobilia and pictures that I have cherished as the only record of him and I can't tell you how much this book means to me. Thank you for crafting such a wonderful account of this true American legend. I wish that I could have lived back then to have a glimpse of these times, but your book has really brought them to life. Thank you again and I can't wait to see the movie!!!
Santa Rosa Beach, FL USA

Comments by Howard Raphael on Monday, May 14, 2001 at 07:43 IP Logged
Laura, Were you to have been born Seabiscuit, I doubt if your autobiography would have been more heartwarmingly portrayed. Thank you
Sherman Oaks, CA USA

Comments by Sharon George on Monday, May 14, 2001 at 06:56 IP Logged
Laura: Thank you for a truly wonderful book "Seabiscuit." I was enchanted with George Woolf. I think you should write a book about him now! Can't wait to see the movie. Thanks again!
Wichita, KS USA

Comments by Steve Scott on Monday, May 14, 2001 at 03:55 IP Logged
Simply put, this is the best book I have ever read.
san diego, ca USA

Comments by Alyce Soffer on Monday, May 14, 2001 at 03:21 IP Logged
This was a beautiful, fascinating story. My own small horse has the heart of Seabiscuit and I, too, saw thatin his eyes the very first time I looked at him, just like Mr. Smith. I doubt there will ever be another relationship like the one involving all of these lives and such a great horse. My mother remembers all the notoriety about Seabiscuit. Thanks for bringing it to the rest of us.
York, PA USA

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