Extended Audio Sample

Download Rin Tin Tin: The Life and the Legend Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Rin Tin Tin: The Life and the Legend Audiobook, by Susan Orlean Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.57 out of 53.57 out of 53.57 out of 53.57 out of 53.57 out of 5 3.57 (23 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Susan Orlean Narrator: Susan Orlean Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2011 ISBN: 9781442344976
Regular Price: $23.95 Add to Cart
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $12.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Add to Cart learn more )

Nearly ten years in the making and perfect for the holidays, Susan Orlean’s first original book since the celebrated bestseller The Orchid Thief is the publishing event of the season: a sweeping, surprising, and powerfully moving work of narrative nonfiction about the dog actor and international icon, Rin Tin Tin.

German shepherd Rin Tin Tin’s journey is the story of the twentieth century. From the discovery of Rin Tin Tin on a WWI battlefield in 1918, to the movies, radio programs, and the 1950s television show that would cement his legacy around the world, Rin Tin Tin traces the extraordinary history of the dog and his descendants over more than ninety years. Rin Tin Tin was a star (he received 10,000 fan letters a week); a worldwide sensation; a social figure (as the U.S. Army’s WWII mascot, he inspired thousands of Americans to donate their dogs for use in the war); and a baby-boom touchstone. He was also a real dog, and the book tells the epic love story between Rin Tin Tin and the remarkable people who devoted their lives to him and his legacy.

Rin Tin Tin is also Orlean’s meditation on the nature of heroism, loyalty, and memory, and how Rin Tin Tin has lasted for so many generations. “Rin Tin Tin could leap twelve feet,” she writes, “and he could leap through time.”

Like no one else, Orlean crafts brilliantly engaging, witty, and passionate narratives about her real-life characters. As The Washington Post Book World has said, her “snapshot-vivid, pitch-perfect prose…is fast becoming one of our national treasures.” A tour de force of history, emotion, and masterful storytelling, here is the ultimate tale for anyone who loves great dogs or great journalism.

Download and start listening now!

BK_SANS_005677

Quotes & Awards

  • “Fascinating and big-hearted…This book is for anyone who has ever had a dog or loved a dog.”

    Ann Patchett

  • “Susan Orlean has produced a hugely entertaining and unforgettable reading experience.” 

    Walter Isaacson, author of Benjamin Franklin and Einstein 

  • “I adored this book.” 

    Rebecca Skloot, author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • Selected for the October 2011 Indie Next List
  • A 2011 Publishers Weekly Best Book
  • A Publishers Weekly Bestseller
  • One of the 2011 New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books for Nonfiction

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Holly | 2/19/2014

    " I kinda sorta remember Rin Tin Tin. I mean, I knew who he was but he was before my time. This book is more about the history of dogs as pets in the USA. It also goes into the "animals in the movies" history too. A good book, but not a great book. It does make me want to get a German Shepherd!! I suggest you read it if you are into dogs and or TCM. Otherwise- it's good for insomnia. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Krenner1 | 2/2/2014

    " A great read for any "boomer." Not only does this tell the story of how Rin Tin Tin was found as a puppy on a French battlefield, it documents the evolution of TV, Hollywood, animal "stars" and their rights, and the decades-long in-fighting about the Rin Tin Tin brand. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ashley | 1/28/2014

    " 5 stars for how interesting this book was, and how touched I am by stories like it. 3 stars for the lull, at times. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linda | 1/28/2014

    " Now I understand why my father always wanted German Shepherds as pets! Rin Tin Tin became an American icon in the days right after WWI. The American public fell in love with the breed and its heroism and intelligence. It became the most popular breed of dog in the U.S. Movies were made about "him." My father was born in 1915 and was a young boy while all this was going on. My father's family had at least 2 different German Shepherds, and when I was growing up we had at least 4 different shepherds. They were all sweet and intelligent. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Natalia | 1/12/2014

    " I love the writing style and reading style of Susan Orlean's work. I've always been a dog lover, but I never knew much about Rin Tin Tin. I grew up loving Lassie. I found the story fascinating and a lot like a great movie itself. Learning about the war's Dogs for Defense program was very interesting too. A great and entertaining read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Peggy | 1/7/2014

    " Susan Orlean is an excellent writer. She approaches the subject with curiosity which leads her into digressions that are fascinating (such as the Nazis' laws against cruelty to animals and the perversion of such a law given the ease with which Nazis killed humans.) She explores the varied identities of Rin Tin Tin, the actual dog who was rescued from a German dog training facility at the end of World War I, a dog who was an actor in films, and ultimately a symbolic dog hero who could be portrayed by other German Shepherds. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Merceda | 1/6/2014

    " Interesting story. I was amazed at how much Rin Tin Tin's owner worked with him and got him to do so many amazing feats and tricks. I didn't know about Rin Tin Tin being a doll during WWI. And then all the rest of Rin Tin Tins throughout time. He was an honest to goodness German dog. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amy Boughner | 12/30/2013

    " More interesting and more involved than I would have expected, glad I read it "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Margery | 12/23/2013

    " This book is a big YAWN even though I love dog and dog stories. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cynthia Carssow | 12/13/2013

    " Great story about Rin Tin Tin and the movie business. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ruth | 12/11/2013

    " starts out wicked strong...fades a little at the end but this is still a solid read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Marcia | 4/12/2013

    " Very uneven. Interesting 50's nostalgia, WW I and II history, and Hollywood, TV history, but too much filler about her research process. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bill Zarges | 2/26/2013

    " wish i had written down where he is buried in paris. would have liked to visit that site...... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 tana | 11/18/2012

    " A rather scattered telling of a great story, it has all the elements of fame, heroism, longing for a simpler time that appeals to anyone who ever loved a dog. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dennis Ross | 10/16/2012

    " I learned a lot of cultural history in this most unusual story. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bitsey | 9/24/2012

    " Great as a history of the Rin Tin Tin phenomenon, but not as much about the dog(s) and their training as I would have liked. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maureen Mullis | 5/9/2012

    " As far as biographies go, it wasn't that good. The writing was good, but overall the book left me wanting more and I found it very disappointing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sharon Teel | 4/23/2012

    " First half was really interesting because of all the historical facts. The second half finished telling the story of Lee and was not as interesting. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jean | 3/13/2012

    " Interesting, informative, and unexpectedly sad. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Susan | 11/2/2011

    " Not in the league of Seabiscut, but interesting facts regarding the history of dogs in films and in warfare. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tyler | 10/25/2011

    " I grew up on Rin Tin Tin K9 Cop and loved watching the antics of such a clever and heroic dog. This book describes how the dog transcends space and time. The idea of the dog reaches humanity's need for a deep, unconditional companionship. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Phyllis | 10/20/2011

    " I'm afraid I found the reading of this book tedious. I respect the amount of research that Susan put into this work, but the telling of the story came off as pedantic. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Debbie | 10/9/2011

    " Great book. Very insightful into popular culture and the media "

Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations
About the Author
Author Susan Orlean

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.