Wallace: The Underdog Who Conquered a Sport, Saved a Marriage, and Championed Pit Bulls--One Flying Disc at a Time

Wallace: The Underdog Who Conquered a Sport, Saved a Marriage, and Championed Pit Bulls--One Flying Disc at a Time

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by Jim Gorant
     
 

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The author of the New York Times bestseller The Lost Dogs shares the heartwarming tale of one plucky, unwanted pit bull who achieved international celebrity.

Today, Wallace is a champion. But in the summer of 2005, he was living in a shelter, a refugee from a suspicious pit bull–breeding operation. Then Andrew “Roo” Yori

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Overview

The author of the New York Times bestseller The Lost Dogs shares the heartwarming tale of one plucky, unwanted pit bull who achieved international celebrity.

Today, Wallace is a champion. But in the summer of 2005, he was living in a shelter, a refugee from a suspicious pit bull–breeding operation. Then Andrew “Roo” Yori entered the picture. A scientist and shelter volunteer, Roo could tell immediately that Wallace was something special. While on his honeymoon, Roo learned that Wallace was about to be put down. Frantic—and even though they already had two dogs—Roo and his wife fought to keep Wallace alive until they could return home to adopt him.

Once Wallace made it home, Roo knew the dog needed a mission, and serendipity led them to the world of competitive Frisbee dogs. It seemed like a terrible idea. Pit bulls are everything that most Frisbee dogs aren’t: large and heavy with thick muscles that can make them look less than graceful. But that was fine with Roo—because part of his mission was to change people’s minds about pit bulls. After overcoming everything from injuries to prejudice against the breed, the unlikely pair became World Champions.

Movingly told by bestselling author Jim Gorant, Wallace will capture the hearts of animal lovers everywhere—and help rescue this popular breed’s unfairly tarnished reputation.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Gorant’s (The Lost Dogs) compelling and surprisingly elegant book tells the story of Wallace, a pit bull with a bad reputation who transforms with the love of a young couple. Rescued as a puppy from an abandoned breeding operation, adopted by a police officer, then reabandoned, Wallace ends up at the Paws & Claws Animal Shelter in Rochester, Minn., where he becomes the black sheep, displaying aggressive behavior toward both dogs and humans. Enter Andrew “Roo” Yori and his wife, Clara, self-professed “dog nerds” who immediately sense that there is “a good dog in there somewhere.” They advocate relentlessly for him, while biases against pit bulls and apprehension about his behavior cause the shelter to consider euthanasia. The Yoris eventually adopt Wallace, and shortly afterward discover his talent for competitive Frisbee. Gorant’s clear prose steers the reader through the little-known world of “disc dogs” and the hours of practice Roo and Wallace log, devising new tricks for the freestyle, where dog and human perform a “choreographed routine set to music.” Gorant never lets the narrative slip into the saccharine, and Wallace’s story will charm even readers who never knew they were interested in pit bulls or disc dogs. Agent: Matthew Carnicelli. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
Praise for WALLACE:

"Compelling and surprisingly elegant [...] Wallace's story will charm even readers who never knew they were interested in put bulls or disc dogs."
Publishers Weekly

"Dog lovers will certainly enjoy the story of Wallace's journey."
Kirkus

Praise for THE LOST DOGS:

“Gorant's fine book is a heartwarming tale of how the love and commitment of a community can heal even the deepest and most abhorrent of traumas.”
Sports Illustrated

“Readers of Gorant's book will want to jump up and whoop, ‘Good dog!'”
The Boston Globe

The Lost Dogs “has the quality of a page-turner as it chronicles the entire story, in all its upsetting detail, of the dogs' rescue and re-entry into the world."
Los Angeles Times

“A well-researched, moving account”
The New Yorker Book Bench

"The Lost Dogs shows us that goodness can be found in the places where we may least expect it.”
The Christian Science Monitor

"The best and most important book about animals written in 2010"
The San Francisco Chronicle


Praise for THE LOST DOGS:

"Gorant's fine book is a heartwarming tale of how the love and commitment of a community can heal even the deepest and most abhorrent of traumas."
Sports Illustrated

"Readers of Gorant's book will want to jump up and whoop, ‘Good dog!'"
The Boston Globe

The Lost Dogs "has the quality of a page-turner as it chronicles the entire story, in all its upsetting detail, of the dogs' rescue and re-entry into the world."
Los Angeles Times

"A well-researched, moving account"
The New Yorker Book Bench

"The Lost Dogs shows us that goodness can be found in the places where we may least expect it."
The Christian Science Monitor

"The best and most important book about animals written in 2010"
The San Francisco Chronicle

The New Yorker Book Bench

 “A well-researched, moving account”

Library Journal
Having detailed the fate of Michael Vick's dogs in the heartrending and immaculately researched New York Times best-selling The Lost Dogs, Sports Illustrated senior editor Gorant describes the life story of another pit bull—Wallace, a rescue dog who went on to win or place impressively in dozens of local, national, and international doggie disc-catching competitions. The aim, though, was to clear up misunderstandings about the breed while letting Wallace have some fun.
Kirkus Reviews
Sports Illustrated senior editor Gorant (Lost Dogs: Michael Vick's Dogs and Their Tale of Rescue and Redemption, 2010, etc.) recounts the tale of a rescue dog who became a world champion Frisbee dog and a mascot for pit bulls. Apparently slated for an illegal dogfighting operation, Wallace was discovered by a policeman and eventually left with an animal shelter. His next owners, Andrew (Roo) Yori and his wife, Clara, had already adopted four dogs from the shelter, where she worked and he volunteered. At first, they hoped to find the puppy--whom they later named after NBA star Rasheed Wallace--a new adoptive home, but it became a problem. Not only do pit bulls have a bad reputation, but Wallace was a difficult dog. He was obstreperous with an unfortunate tendency to nip at other dogs, but he was playful and fundamentally friendly. Although the shelter turned to euthanasia only as a last resort, as time passed this seemed to be the future awaiting Wallace. Roo and Clara decided to take him in despite the problems. Roo used his own athletic prowess to train Wallace in disc-catching, and the sport provided an extreme athletic challenge for both man and dog. Gorant describes how they rose to the top in this highly competitive sport, and he also looks at the strains and rewards experienced by the newly married couple. Dog lovers will certainly enjoy the story of Wallace's journey, but the author's digressions interrupt the narrative flow. Too many detours confuse this account of an inspiring achievement.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781592407316
Publisher:
Gotham
Publication date:
08/30/2012
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.34(h) x 1.02(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

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From the Publisher
"The best and most important book about animals written in 2010"
The San Francisco Chronicle

Meet the Author

Jim Gorant is a senior editor at Sports Illustrated and a former writer for GQ, Men’s Health, and many other magazines. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller The Lost Dogs and a twenty-year magazine veteran, he lives in Montclair, New Jersey.

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