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Hi Laura, I just want to tell you how much I enjoyed reading this book, I was taken back to that time in history and felt like I was there watching Seabiscuit run and going through all of the trials and tribulations that they all went through, I fell in love with Seabiscuit, I live and work on a dairy farm and have loved and taken care of animals all my life, thank you for re-creating this story for us who are alive now and I cannot wait for the movie, thanks again, Tina
TINA RAMTHUN <TMRAMTH@AOL.COM>
MONTAGUE, MI USA - Thursday, January 09, 2003 at 16:08:42 (EST)
Laura, Thank You for your fine work, and your obvious deep passion. Martha Canterini suggested I contact you here; I am an equine artist and sculptor, and Martha is a fan of my work. I just wanted to say how much I am a fan of yours. Sincerely, Donna B
Donna Bernstein <donna@RunningWindArt.com>
McCall, ID USA - Thursday, January 09, 2003 at 13:58:08 (EST)
Dear Laura, Nearby, in Grass Valley, is the old Howard thoroughbred ranch called Loma Rica. It is said that the famous racehouse, NOOR, is buried in the infield of the practice track. According to your wonderfully researched book, on p. 338, NOOR is mentioned as Howard's "one last success on the track...the great Noor, winner of the Santa Anita Handicap and conqueror of Triple Crown winner Citation." What year was this? Did Noor race out of Howard's Ridgewood barn or his Loma Rica barn? or did Noor pass in ownership to somebody else who owned the Loma Rica? The property is in the midst of a development controversy in Nevada County. I'd love to know how to research the post-Seabiscuit "Noor days" in order that this beautiful property receives the right treatment and Noor's memory is preserved. (I was almost born at Santa Anita in 1952. Loved horses & racing ever since!) Best wishes for a complete recovery. Gae Seal
gae seal <gaeseal@sbcglobal.net>
Nevada City, CA USA - Wednesday, January 08, 2003 at 22:31:15 (EST)
Ms. Hillenbrand: I read Seabiscuit while on vacation and found it to be one of the most enjoyable books I've ever read. You did a masterful job of telling an amazing story with such careful attention to detail and historical fact. I was extremely impressed with your scholarship and the effort it took to gather all the information. You also told the story with great suspense, which made for very fun reading. My grandmother was a very avid horse racing fan and no doubt was keenly aware of Seabiscuit and his comtemporaries. I have a much better appreciation now for the sport and why she loved it. I never appreciated the spirit, intelligence, and personalities of horses until now! I look forward with great anticipation to the movie. If it half as good as the book, it should win the Oscar! Regards, John Buckner.
John C. Buckner, Ph.D. <john.buckner@communityresourcesinfo.org>
Weston, MA USA - Wednesday, January 08, 2003 at 20:02:18 (EST)
I have never written or participated in any of these online discussions but this one needed to be my first. By now you know what a wonderful story you have told, I just wanted to thank you for it. I knew nothing of the story and just felt compelled to read about it from the urging from my father, a horse"fan". I haven't felt this way about a book since, I don't even know. I wish you continued success and thank you again for bringing this story to life.
steve hollander <Baziq2@aol.com>
east brunswick, nj USA - Wednesday, January 08, 2003 at 15:19:00 (EST)
The book is great! It is fantastic and I learned a lot! If Seabiscuit would be still alive, I would do everything just to see him once!
Kathrin
York, UK - Wednesday, January 08, 2003 at 13:34:04 (EST)
We, at the Somers Public Library, Somers, NY, are reading; "Seabiscuit: An American Legend" for our book discussion group. I am finding it a wonderful read, and I am learning so much about race horses, horse racing and the wonderful horse "Seabiscuit", and his owners and trainers. Thank you for taking the time to write such an important and educational book! Lydia Kugel, Librarian
Lydia Kugel <lkugel@westchesterlibraries.org>
Somers, NY USA - Wednesday, January 08, 2003 at 12:12:10 (EST)
Laura, LOVED THIS BOOK! From the time I was a little girl, I wanted to be a thoroughbred horse trainer. Alas, it was not to be, as I lived in the big city and had no connections to horses at all. Your book was incredible, I cried at the end for I felt that I truly knew and loved Seabiscuit and Pollard and felt there triumphs and losses. Just goes to show you what the human and equine spirit can do if the will is there......boundless possibilities! Now, at 42, how can I be around these beautiful creatures? I have got to find a way.....your writing was very inspiring, thank you!
Kristi Wood <kkkwood@aol.com>
Houston, TX USA - Wednesday, January 08, 2003 at 10:25:14 (EST)
Dear Laura Hillenbrand: Your portrayal of this horse and all the people around him was absolutely "right on" . A tremendous effort and an incredible story told .The plot is so surreal and yet it is all true. Great job. I can't wait for the movie. Regards, George Oliphant
George Oliphant <gddoliphant@yahoo.com>
Annapolis, MD USA - Tuesday, January 07, 2003 at 22:19:52 (EST)
God, I love this horse. The book was spellbinding. I felt like I was in the grandstands cheering for this undersized gamer and jockey. Your slide show was a perfect companion to Laura's story. I can't wait for the movie. I really love this horse and his story.
Paul Lister <oukid@adelphia.net>
Bethlehem, NH USA - Tuesday, January 07, 2003 at 21:23:01 (EST)
Hello Laura, I would just like to say this is the BEST book I have ever read. I use to train thoroughbreds I was a rider so I could feel the emotions of the horse and rider as I read your book. What a Wonderful job you have done with all the facts. I hope they do your book justice when making the movie. God Bless you and everyone in the business! Thanks for sharing all the facts. I still ride and wish everyone could enjoy the experience of horsemanship.
Becky Peak <beckypeak@hotmail.com>
Anderson, SC USA - Tuesday, January 07, 2003 at 17:30:13 (EST)
Thank you for the best book I've read in a long, long time. Like everyone else, I couldn't put it down, and kept regaling my husband with Seabiscuit stories. Words can't adequately express the impact of your writing and Seabiscuit's story. What a masterpiece!
Terry Tucker <ttucker@duffnet.com>
Elkton, MD USA - Tuesday, January 07, 2003 at 13:16:17 (EST)
I loved your book, just ate it up, every page. We read it in my book club, too, and it was a universal hit, except for the one guy who boycotted it because it was an "animal book;" his loss! When I saw the trailer for the movie recently I was delighted and completely surprised. I am already planning a mass expedition of all of my Seabiscuit friends, both from the horse people and the book club groups (no overlap.) Your book was masterful, as attested to by my contstantly interrupting my reading to read passages aloud to my husband. Kudos.
Madeleine McClellan <madmac2@ix.netcom.com>
santa cruz, CA USA - Tuesday, January 07, 2003 at 12:59:27 (EST)
I can only add what hundreds have said already about your book, wonderful, and a truly fitting and gracious account of a wonderful story. Seabiscuit his owners and jockey would be proud of their legacy, and Seabiscuit would take it all in his stride, then go back to sleep!
Alasdair Macleod <alasdair.m@virgin.net>
PErth, UK - Tuesday, January 07, 2003 at 10:30:29 (EST)
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, Thank you for your masterfully written biography of a remarkable racehorse, Seabiscuit, and for the many excellent articles you regularly contribute to equine literature. I appreciate your work as a horse lover, racing enthusiast, and writer for young adult readers. I came into the company of horses late in life, although I had enjoyed racehorses from afar since my girlhood in New York City. But it was in Texas where I first interacted with a horse. The experiences my husband and I had with a weanling we met on a Texas Hill Country ranch in 1996 launched us on an equine adventure that is recounted in "Ready's Gifts," the story of a Texas-bred Thoroughbred filly that enriched my life and taught me much about nonverbal communication and expressive ways -- hers and mine. Ready Lady's story may not be as compelling as Seabiscuit's, but it is no less an example of the grit and grace of these magnificent animals who work hard to meet human expectations. I'm addressing a copy of "Ready's Gifts" to you at Random House for one reason only: I want to share a little about the horse I love with you because I know that you will appreciate our kinship. Tom and I have marked our calendars for the airing on PBS of the Seabiscuit documentary and the release of the motion picture. Even as we enjoy those visual presentations, we will continue to read and reread "Seabiscuit: An American Legend," inviting the richness of your language to shape our mental images of the horses and people whose lives inform an inspiring story. Thank you!
Marian Martinello <marian@readylady.com>
San Antonio, TX USA - Monday, January 06, 2003 at 21:54:42 (EST)
I am 53 year old Louisiana racing fan... have been my whole life. I grew up in cajun country with "bush track" racing with all of the great cajun race riders.. like randy romero, eddie delahousse, shane sellars, robbie albrado, mark guidry and too many to name..... what a great, well written book about one oa the most fasinating sports on earth! Thanks for writing it ..and best of health to you
KERRY MANUEL <KERRYMANUEL@HOTMAIL.COM>
BATON ROUGE , LA USA - Monday, January 06, 2003 at 20:01:05 (EST)
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and couldn't put it down. Beautifully written, it really gives a feel for the relationship that so many people had with 'the Biscuit'. I own horses myself and could relate to so many of the things written about the game little horse. I cried at the end, and only wish I could have met the Howards, Red and Tom, but really I would have loved to have given 'the biscuit' a pat. I can't wait for the film. Here's hoping its accurate!
Tracey Nelson <tracey.nelson>
London, UK - Monday, January 06, 2003 at 12:01:24 (EST)
After reading yet one more disappointing novel about neurotic, dysfunctional characters with little spine, less heart, and losing causes, I selected your book for my reading group choice. How invigorating and reassuring it has been to read this story of real-life heroism -- human and equine -- told through the skillful writing of a "jocky" who knows just when to rein in and when to allow the story to charge headlong on its own energy. Thank you for taking me on one great ride! Maggie Chandler (High school English teacher/school librarian)
Maggie Chandler <maggiemchandler@aol.com>
Long Beach, CA USA - Sunday, January 05, 2003 at 20:15:35 (EST)
YOUR BOOK WAS THE MOST EXCITING BOOK I HAVE EVER READ!! HOW I WANDERED ON TO YOUR BOOK IS A BIT OF A STORY. MY FRIEND AND I BOTH SHOW QUARTER HORSES, AND HER HORSE HAD FREAKED OUT AT WHAT WE DONT KNOW??????????? TO MAKE A LONG STORY SHORT, HE RAN ALL OVER THE PLACE (EVEN JUMPED THE MANURE SPREADER)AT THE FARM AND ENDED UP IN THE POND. THE POND WAS 15 FEET DEEP, SO HE HAD TO SWIM TO GET OUT. THE TRAINER GRABBED HIM,FROM HIS GOLF CART AND BROUGHT HIM BACK WITH A NEW NAMED ATTACHED "SEABISCUIT". WE ALL HAD A GOOD LAUGH. WELL ONE DAY I WAS IN K-MARTS SHOPPING AND I RAN ACROSS THE BOOK , SEABISCUIT.I LAUGHED TO MYSELF, AND THOUGHT I WOULD BUY IT FOR HER. I HADN'T READ A BOOK IN AWHILE, AND THOUGHT I'D TRY THIS ONE. (BEING A HORSE PERSON AND ALL)WELL, LET ME TELL YOU. I HAVE NEVER READ ANYTHING AS EXCITING OR DESCRIPTIVE AS YOUR BOOK.I COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN. I AM A HAIRDRESSER AND HATED TO SEE A CUSTOMER COME THRU THE DOOR, CAUSE I WOULD HAVE TO PUT IT DOWN. I FELT LIKE I WAS AT THE RACE!!!!!I TRULY ENJOYED IT. THEN ONE DAY I WAS AT THE ALL AMERICAN QUARTER CONGRESS HORSE SHOW SITTING WITH MY COUSIN AND HE WAS TELLING ME ABOUT A BUILDING THAT THEY WERE RESTORING. HE FOUND AN OLD NEWSPAPER CLIPPING WITH (GUESS WHO) SEABISCUIT. I ALMOST FELL OUT OF MY CHAIR. HE DIDN'T KNOW THE INTEREST I HAD IN THE BOOK. I BEGGED HIM FOR THE ARTICLE, HE SAID IT WAS VERY FRAIL. I NOW HAVE IT, AND IT WAS FROM APRIL 23,?? WHEN ANEROID BEAT SEABICUIT. IT IS NOT ALL INTACT. I AM GOING TO MAKE SOME SORT OF SHADOW BOX OR SOMETHING WITH IT, THE BOOK AND SOME OTHER SEABISCUIT STUFF THAT I CAN FIND. I CAN'T TELL YOU HOW YOUR BOOK HAS TOUCHED ME( I NEVER DID GIVE THE BOOK TO MY FRIEND)I AM JUSST THRILLED TO SEE THIER IS A MOVIE COMING OUT, I'LL BE THERE RIGHT IN FRONT. THANKS AGAIN, LAURA ALLISON
LAURA ALLISON <LAURAALLISON1@NETZERO.COM>
COLUMBUS, MI USA - Sunday, January 05, 2003 at 19:16:17 (EST)
I absolutely loved your book! Can not wait for the movie and hope they don't screw it up. I grew up on Long Island and my childhood 'heroes' were Csrry Back. Johnny Sellers, Bally Ache (does anyone remember him?), and later, Forego and of course Secretariat. Seabiscuit, Whirlaway, Citation, War Admiral, et. al. were just famous names of great champions to me but your book made the Biscuit come alive and I now understand why he was one of the greats. Thank you for a wonderful book!
ringer <bieroringer@aol.com>
Portsmouth, VA USA - Sunday, January 05, 2003 at 08:33:35 (EST)
Just finished reading "Seabiscuit" and enjoyed it immensely. A wonderful story, wonderfully told. It brought back forgotten memories of my pre-teen years and taught me more than I ever knew about horseracing. Question: Though not mentioned in the book, do you know why Howard and/or Smith did not try to enter Seabiscuit in tne races for the Triple Crown?
Stan Yacknin <rspy@telcomplus.net>
Bellingham, WA USA - Sunday, January 05, 2003 at 02:22:05 (EST)
Thank-you for bringing Seabiscuit to us. Your book was a wonderful emotional ride. If you ever would like a respite from the DC belljar I would like to offer you our guest room here on our 10 acre horse ranch where we can surround you in down feather, dote on you, and otherwise ease your travail so you may further your craft in comfort. Bravo Laura. Sincerely,
Charlie Brooks <sorchab@msn.com>
Belgrade, MT USA - Friday, January 03, 2003 at 22:33:59 (EST)
Ms. Hillenbrand, The 2nd Civil War is about to start...I have not gone online to find out the result, nor do I care to. Reading your book is reliving this era as if one were there. Thank you. I asked my youngest daughter for this book in particular for Christmas. Being a horse fan also, she cannot believe I read so slowly. I have been looking for a list of other books you have written. Any suggestions?
Anthony Gomez <tonyvelas@attbi.com>
Aurora, CO USA - Friday, January 03, 2003 at 14:19:00 (EST)
I grew up with Sea Biscuit as the ultimate race horse. All my childhood games featured Sea Biscuit. My father was from New York and my mother from Nashville, TN . I cannot over emphasize how deeply this book conveyed the interpersonal relationships between horses and people. Its truly amazing. This horse brought many people together for a common cause. Sea Biscuit was truly one of a kind and his influence will continue forever. I hope Arthur Hancock knows this story.
buddy cafferky <acafferky@comcast.net>
knoxville, TN United States - Thursday, January 02, 2003 at 21:46:47 (EST)
I spent the first 14 years of my life (I'm now 67 years old)in San Gabriel CA not far from Santa Anita. My parents were race fans and used to go to Santa Anita a lot and I recall conversations they had about Seabiscuit. My first experience at Santa Anita was when I was about 10 years of age and I recall the statues of both Seabiscuit and George Wolf in the paddock at Santa Anita. My grandmother lived in Ukiah, about 23 miles from Willits and in the 40's my dad would take me to Ridgewood Ranch to see Seabiscuit and Kayak when we went to Ukiah visit my grandmother. when I was 14 I moved to Ukiah and my step-father had some property near Ridgewood. In fact we had to go through Ridgewood to get to the property. A friend of our family had a relative that was a caretaker at the lake mentioned in your book. I used to "borrow" a row boat and row around the lake. Your book brought back many pleasant memories of my youth. Thank you so much for such a wonderful book.
Don Milne <escondon@aol.com>
Escondido, CA USA - Thursday, January 02, 2003 at 16:17:46 (EST)
laura-just returned from a vacation with my family and when i finished your book i felt like my vacation was over.incredible story and writing. i own harness horses and your story-telling can only help the horse bussiness.i hope this e-mail finds you well and that you have a healthy new year.thanks again for your terrific work. all the best-marc
marc goldberg <amca1@aol.com>
hewlett, n.y. USA - Thursday, January 02, 2003 at 14:52:03 (EST)
Dear Laura, Please excuse the mistake; compelling for impelling in my letter.Slip of the fingers!
Marilyn Layla Gazzillo <mallie@princeton.edu>
Princeton Junction, nj USA - Thursday, January 02, 2003 at 12:38:06 (EST)
Dear Laura, I had the wonderful opportunity of working on the new Universal Pictures film Seabiscuit in Lexington,Ky during October and November.Your book was so incredible.Being a horseperson myself with family involved in racing this book and film have found a special place in my heart. I know that the film will do your book the justice it deserves.That you found this story so impelling to tell is true heart and soul.Thank you so much.I'm sorry that we didn't meet on the set!
Marilyn Layla Gazzillo <mallie@princeton.edu>
Princeton Junction, NJ USA - Thursday, January 02, 2003 at 12:30:22 (EST)
Hello Laura, No Query ~ just a compliment & a comment. I thoroughly enjoyed your book. We have been summering in Narragansett for 10 years, and I had it with me this summer, but, never had gotten to it until mid-December ~ I wish I could have enjoyed it in Red's & SB's home turf...I do wish we all could see & expirience the old racetracks ~I've looked at pictures and they seem much more intimate. I got to the chapter on the match race between SB & War Admiral. My heart was BANGING in my chest for the entire Chapter, and I could not sleep for 2 hours afterwards. I didn't mind in the least. Truth be told, when the book ended I had to fight back emotions of losing Seabiscuit as if he was my horse & best friend..I wasn't too successful in that fight. Thanks so much for the Book, the expirience it provided me, and the knowledge I now have..I'm better for it. What's next on your to-do list? ~SA
Stephen Anzenberger <sanzenberger@snet.net>
Killingworth, CT USA - Thursday, January 02, 2003 at 12:05:28 (EST)
Dear Laura: I just viewed the trailer online for the movie and it brought tears to my eyes. It looks like for once Hollywood will bring to life a book correctly, not fabricated and embelished for the masses. The cinematography looks beautiful. There is a brief portion shown in the trailer of the match race and it looks spot on correct. Seabiscuit is exactly where he is supposed to be as is War Admiral in the turn for home, it looks SO awesome!! I look forward with great anticipation to this summer. Also look forward to your new edition of the book with the photos and the PBS documentary. This is going to be a great year for all thoroughbred racing and Seabiscuit fans. All the best and take care.
Matthew Karns <buckpasser123@aol.com>
Bloomsburg, PA USA - Thursday, January 02, 2003 at 08:30:29 (EST)
Laura,, I have those original photos of Seabiscuit I mentioned to you a while back if you would like to contact me. You might want to borrow them for your upcoming photo book,, let me know, gary
GARY MEDEIROS <PHARLAP2@AOL.COM>
SAN LEANDRO, CA USA - Thursday, January 02, 2003 at 01:23:09 (EST)
Laura Currently reading your splendid book and very much looking forward to the movie. I work for the independent (privately owned as distinct from state owned) radio service in the sports department. I would very much like to know more about Red Pollard's Irish ancestry - could you please direct me to some sources. A web search has thrown up very little. Best wishes Gerry
Gerry O'Sullivan <gerryosullivan@eircom.net>
Dublin, Ireland - Wednesday, January 01, 2003 at 21:30:06 (EST)
Laura Currently reading your splendid book and very much looking forward to the movie. I work for the independent (privately owned as distinct from state owned) radio service in the sports department. I would very much like to know more about Red Pollard's Irish ancestry - could you please direct me to some sources. A web search has thrown up very little. Best wishes Gerry
Gerry O'Sullivan <gerryosullivan@eircom.net>
Dublin, Ireland - Wednesday, January 01, 2003 at 21:29:35 (EST)
FROM THE AUTHOR: Several people have mentioned wanting to see more photos of Seabiscuit. You're in luck! I am now assembling photos for a special illustrated edition of Seabiscuit: An American Legend. The book will feature at least 100 photographs, many of which have never been exhibited publicly. Check back at this site for updates on the release. Thanks for all your support!
Laura Hillenbrand
Washington, DC USA - Wednesday, January 01, 2003 at 20:40:21 (EST)
I just saw the movie trailer for the upcoming Seabiscuit movie and I was so choked up I couldn't say anything to my wife. I loved the book and have collected reviews about your book in a scrapbook. I hope the movie will be as good as your book. I keep rereading your book all the time and even got the "come on, seabiscuit" book because you mentioned it as your inspiration. I would love to see more pictures of Seabiscuit some day. He will always be an inspiration to me about how determination and heart can win the race of 'life'. Thanks, Dave Kerlin
dave kerlin <dmkerlin@aol.com>
germantown, md USA - Wednesday, January 01, 2003 at 17:32:10 (EST)
Dear Laura, I am one of the crew members on the production, i am the driver of the camera truck, I was hoping too meet you when we were back east in saratoga, or keenland, but that was not to be. I have worked on many films over the years, but this one really gives me, and many of the other crew members, a great pride to be involved with. As you know there are a great number of the crew who are not known to the general public, and do not get their name in lights, but take great pride in the jobs that they preform, drivers are a part of this group. thank you for the story
phil strauss <hydaway@earthlink.net>
guemes island, wa. USA - Wednesday, January 01, 2003 at 11:33:30 (EST)
Hi~i'm an Asia reader When i read the story about Seabiscuit,i'm very touched. This is a good story,all of my friend love it,too. i hope there'are more pictures of Seabiscuit on the page (i'm a horselover) thank you for good writing!
pu <purabbit2001@yahoo.com.tw>
taiwan - Wednesday, January 01, 2003 at 02:10:54 (EST)
Hi~i'm an Asia reader When i read the story about Seabiscuit,i'm very touched. This is a good story,all of my friend love it,too. i hope there'are more pictures of Seabiscuit on the page (i'm a horselover) thank you for good writing!
pu <purabbit2001@yahoo.com.tw>
taiwan - Wednesday, January 01, 2003 at 02:10:49 (EST)
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand: I received your book for Christmas and finished it on 12/30/02. It was in a word : "A-Right-Riveting-Read". I asked Santa for Seabiscuit after hearing you being interviewed on the radio (KSFO, I think). My grandfather, also Weldon, born in 1900 was a racing fan and I recall his many stories about racing. He was the one who sold Johnny Alisco of Agua Caliente the wind-up stop lights which were always on Green from the US border to the tract before the races and green all the way back after the day ended. My grandad loved racing and everything involved. He was buddies with Bob Crosby and used to drink with them all. He once had to drive Bing home from a little to much partying. My first and last day at the races was Hollywood Park in 1978. I put $10.00 on J.O. Tobin who whipped the favorite, Seattle Slew. The twist: J.O Tobin was named after the well known San Francisco banker whose family founded Hibernia Bank. Since I was working for Wells Fargo in San Francisco, and either Johnny Longden or Willie Shoemaker was in the saddle (my grandfather's two favorites), how could I not place a wager. Nobody in our party new any of the background until dinner. When the bill came, I counted my money to help pay - $600.00 plus. Not bad for a day's outing. Let's call it beginners luck. Never did it again. Anyway, Thank you again for your story. I loved it. My very best regards, Weldon C. Waller
Weldon Waller <Wcwaller@aol.com>
Walnut Creek, CA USA - Tuesday, December 31, 2002 at 21:42:18 (EST)
I loved your book. It's great to read a "good feeling" book that is also a true story. How often we overlook true stories for those of fiction when real life is so much more meaningful. Thanks again for a wonderful book.
Lana Williams <lpwilliams@direcway.com>
Whitley City, Ky USA - Tuesday, December 31, 2002 at 19:52:00 (EST)
hank you Laura for letting your guest book become a "Seabiscuit chat forum" I would like to ask your readers "Doesn't anyone out there have a descendent of Seabiscuit??" A few guest book entry's have stated that they have a descendent of War Admiral but I sure would like to communicate with other owners of Seabiscuit descendents. My horse is out of Seabiscuit and Lucille K... Seabiscuit was his great, great, great grand sire. I am so curious about the disposition of other descendents as my horse seems to be one of a kind! He is pretty sure he is part human! I would love to correspond with others who may have a "Seabiscuit horse". Thank you for allowing us entry into your guest book! Cindy
Cindy Rose <crose@mcn.org>
Fort Bragg, CA USA - Tuesday, December 31, 2002 at 15:34:29 (EST)
Laura, I ran into your book when I was at the library today browsing, and will be reading it in the next few days. It is so amazing that you wrote this. It's wonderful, and I will let you know how I liked it after I read it. I am contacting you specifically because I have had CFIDS for several years but did not realize that's what it was till September this year...........I met someone on chronicfatiguesupport.com who lives 10 minutes from you. She told me about you and your book. We are doing massive carrot juice, and other things, particularly the study of how to become more alkaline, and are getting well. I intend to go back to work in 2-6 months, as normal days are coming back so I'm getting bored at home. The lady I am helping with the things that I have learned from my journey with this was bedridden when we met on the forum, and has a lot of good days now, compared to before starting to do juice. If you would like more information about our journeys back to health - particularly why juicing works - in the hopes that maybe it would help, please contact me. Blessings! Ellice
Ellice <healingdesign@hotmail.com>
WA USA - Tuesday, December 31, 2002 at 00:05:20 (EST)
This is the best story I have ever read. I have been going to Santa Anita my whole life and now I bring my bring my wife and three daugthers almost every weekend. The statue's of Seabiscuit and George Woolf have taken on new meaning. Thank You for writing this wonderfull book.
Philip Mazzolini <mazzolini@sbcglobal.net>
Temple City, ca USA - Monday, December 30, 2002 at 22:16:30 (EST)
You are indeed a striking person. I pray for your health and happiness. You yourself are an American treasure. I enjoyed your presenting Seabiscuit your book on CPAN and would hope to meet you sometime. Bob
Bob Sharp <lfc.services@verizon.net>
Fairfax, va USA - Monday, December 30, 2002 at 18:04:00 (EST)
Dear Laura, Thanks for writing such a great book. I loved it. I hoped for more photos of Seabiscuit, the races, and the people. Why didn't you put more photos in the book? Where can I purchase photos of Seabiscuit?
Roxane Kobalka <roxaneirene@yahoo.com>
Tustin, CA USA - Monday, December 30, 2002 at 14:56:44 (EST)
As an equestrian, I always love good horse stories. I too felt teary seeing the trailer recently. July is too long to wait, I have to go buy the book!!!! Nice job!
A Minto <aminto@jps.net>
Durham, CA USA - Monday, December 30, 2002 at 14:43:53 (EST)
Seabiscuit has to be one of the most entertaining and inspiring books I've read in years. The writing was absolutely outstanding. I have loaned the book to anyone who wanted it and their feeling mirror mine. I am SO looking forward to the movie and only hope that this time they found a horse who can run! Thank you Laura!
webkitty <webkitty@aol.com>
Alexandria, VA USA - Monday, December 30, 2002 at 10:04:33 (EST)
As a young man who has grown up his whole life on a Thoroughbred farm, I have to say that this book is excellent. It is very factual in its nature and the author has done a superb job with it. This book has brought back a lot of memories for me from my early childhood and many summer days spent in Lexington Kentucky. I might also add that I am extremely excited about the movie, and I dearly hope it does Seabiscuit, Mr. Smith, Howard, Pullard, and also this book justice. The American Racing industry needs this kind of publicity now more then ever! Again, congradulations on the book, -Ryan Taylor
Ryan Taylor <r_taylor00@yahoo.com>
Murphysboro, IL USA - Monday, December 30, 2002 at 04:22:26 (EST)
Gave book as gift to sister, lifelong horse lover. I'm not, but I knew soon after thumbing through the book I had a "sure winner"(place your bets!)... this one's in the winner's circle !! Looking forward to the film. Thanks. Tim S.
Timothy Spaulding <timothy@htc.net>
Dupo, IL USA - Monday, December 30, 2002 at 02:25:09 (EST)
I just viewed the trailer of the upcoming movie...even though it was only a few seconds in length, the powerful music and brief, stirring scenes had me tearing up as it ended. What am I going to do when I see the entire picture? I am spreading the words to my friends and customers...circle "July 25" on your calendars!
randy christian <rac443@swbell.net>
dallas, tx USA - Sunday, December 29, 2002 at 16:19:41 (EST)
Hello! I am the education coordinator for a therapeutic camp in NW Georgia that serves youth-at-risk. Although I know very little about horses or horse racing, I am very familiar with the underdog. Many of the young people with whom we work have been overlooked and underestimated throughout their lives. Although I have yet to finish it, I have used passages and anecdotes from your book to motivate and challenge both the residents and staff of our camp. Thank you for allowing me this joyful glimpse into the life of Seabiscuit!
John Wilbur <jobenwilbur@yahoo.com>
Carrollton, GA USA - Sunday, December 29, 2002 at 14:43:06 (EST)
Laura, Crouching in 100 degree heat more than a year ago, our farrier strongly recommended your work. We immediately purchased a copy but I had not touched it until two days ago. In my own self created financial depression, I needed a break from job hunting and bill collectors and picked the book up. Thirty six hours later, spirits lifted, I stand in awe of Seabiscuit, the horsemen and women and your work. Not only were you able to bring the human characters to life, you did a superb job relating the interaction of the horses. I, too, hope that the film makers do not cheapen Seabiscuit, the human characters or the story, but, for the first time in years, we will sit in a movie theater to watch a film. The trailer looks like they have a handle on getting it right. Thank you so much for the effort and heart you put into the book.
Greg Johnson <gwjohns@mindspring.com>
Meridian, ID USA - Sunday, December 29, 2002 at 13:51:06 (EST)
Though I know very little about horseracing, I have always been drawn to televised events. After reading Jane Smiley's "Horse Heaven," I was hooked and picked up your book as well. Your book is beautifully written, the story terrifically crafted, the races described with all the breathtaking presence of participation as spectator rather than reader many years later. I truly enjoyed the read and look forward to the movie.
Judith Anderson Morris <iamtoadie@aol.com>
Charleston, SC USA - Sunday, December 29, 2002 at 11:51:44 (EST)
Part one evoked a retreat to the turbulent world of Steinbeck I read many years ago.Born post WW2 it is impossible to imagine the the fight for survival the vast majority had to endure-very few achieved rags to riches,fewer kept a hold to their success.It is refreshing to read an account of equine triumph and tragedy without a Hollywood sentimentality.The reality of events are so engrossing and well documented fabrication,hyperbole would only detract.Being an Aussie punter I'm interested to know if the Iceman's kangaroo saddle is exibited anywhere in the States.A match race between The Buscuit and "Big Red" Phar Lap would have been a better contest,they'd eyeball each other to the shadow of the post.No account of a galloper and his handlers comes within a bullsroar of this.Thank Ms Hillenbrand.By the way swimming in cold seawater/Olympic pool/or just a cold bath 15 minutes twice a day is advisable for fatigue/and lay off the coffee, substitute black tea after cooling down.Adjust diet to your climate,food is medicine.
ALAN PARKER <aparker@bigpond.com.au>
- Sunday, December 29, 2002 at 06:33:07 (EST)
Dear Laura: I absolutely love your book about Seabiscuit. I have been breeding and racing Thoroughbreds for the last 20 years and your book and the new Seabiscuit Movie will help restore Thoroughbred Horse Racing to its proper place in American History as not only the "The Sport of Kings," but also as the "Sport of the People". The book and the movie came at just the time that we needed them, to help us heal and unite after 9/11. My husband and I and our friends, the Quades, were fortunate enough to be extras in the filming of Seasbiscuit at Santa Anita on Dec. 7th. Afterwards, we went to the Derby Resturant for dinner. George Woolfe once owned it and it was wonderful to see all of the Seabiscuit mementos. My father once bought a Buick from Mr. Howard's Dealership in 1940 and we own a descendant of War Admiral. What a Divine Plan. Also, you might try Reiki Healing for your condition. I have been a Reiki Healer for many years and I have seen amazing results. In closing, I want to thank you for putting your heart and soul into writing Seasbiscuit. God Bless You! Lynne Knightstep
Lynne Knightstep <lynneknightstep@earthlink.net>
Brentwood, CA USA - Saturday, December 28, 2002 at 19:35:34 (EST)
Dec. 28, 2002 4:00 PM Dear Laura: I absolutely love your book about Seabiscuit. I have been breeding and racing thoroughbreds for twenty years and your book and the new movie will help restore Thoroughbred Horse Racing to its proper place in American History as not only the "Sport of Kings," but also the sport of the American people as a whole. It is wonderful that someting as positive as Seasbiscuit came along just when America needed it, to help us heal and unite after 9/11. My husband and I were fortunate enough to be extras in the Dec. 7th filming of the seasbiscuit movie at Santa Anita. Afterwords, we and our friends, the Quades had dinner at The Derby Resturant, which George Woolfe once owned. We had a wonderful time looking at all the Seasbiscuit mementos. Thank you so very much for putting yur heart and soul into writing this book. America and Horseracing needed it. Also, you might try Reiki Healing for your cfs. I have been a Reiki Healer for many years and have seen amazing results. Best regards, Lynne Knightstep
Lynne Knightstep <lynneknightstep@earthlink.net>
Brentwood, CA USA - Saturday, December 28, 2002 at 19:12:46 (EST)
I have read and loved your book "Seabiscuit" and am very interested in finding out how to get it autographed by you. I will provide a self-addressed stamped envelpoe for return mailing. Please contact me and let me know where I can send it to you. Thank you for your time. Mike Hart
Mike Hart <mikeyh953@comcast.net>
Bel Air, MD USA - Saturday, December 28, 2002 at 18:17:02 (EST)
Laura, Saw a trailer for the movie last night. I was born in 1938 and remember growing up with boardgames starring Seabiscuit. Your book was outstanding. Don't let them screw up the movie. I can't wait. How is your health? Best wishes, Don Drakulich
Don Drakulich <don@aol.com>
Colorado Springs , CO USA - Saturday, December 28, 2002 at 14:12:52 (EST)
Dear Laura and seabiscuitonline readers; Many guest book writers have asked, ďwhat ever became of Pumpkin?Ē I feel qualified to answer that, as my father, S.C. ďCurleyĒ Jones, worked for Mr. Howard on Ridgewood Ranch all during the 1940ís, and our family lived on the ranch for several years when I was a youngster. Iím sure your readers will be happy to know that Seabiscuitís little palomino friend was also retired to live out the rest of his life at Ridgewood. While Pumpkin was not stabled in Seabiscuitís barn, his pasture was not too far away. I donít think Seabiscuit missed having his old pal in close proximity, because The Biscuit was rather busy siring Little Biscuits, or taking his exercise rider on pleasant trail rides around the ranch, or, I suppose, trading horse racing stories with his stable mates, Kayak II, Mioland and Sabu. Pumpkin, by the way, is not to be confused with the often-photographed Chulo, a lighter colored, taller palomino that Mr. Howard rode. While I have ranch snapshots of Seabiscuit, Chulo, and the lead pony Tick Tock, I have none of Pumpkin. The only photo I have seen of Pumpkin is in the book "American Race Horses 1937", by John Hervey, page 132.
Laverne (Jones) Booth <ljbooth@thevine.net>
Hesperia, CA USA - Friday, December 27, 2002 at 19:53:30 (EST)
I read your wonderful book after listening to your interview on NPR & proceeded to buy it for everyone I knew! I e mailed you then to let you know how much I loved it. A man e mailed me saying he had video footage for sale of some of Seabiscuit's races. I was tempted, but neglected to contact him. Now, a few years later, I'm re-reading the book & would LOVE to see that footage! That man obviously got my email from this web site. Could you please resubmit my e mail to him? Thanks so much.
Nancy Hixon <prisment@concentric.net>
Hinsdale,, IL USA - Friday, December 27, 2002 at 18:46:20 (EST)
Great book! But whatever happened to Pumpkin?
Gayle Moran <gmmoran@airmail.net>
Plano, TX USA - Friday, December 27, 2002 at 17:32:05 (EST)
Have just finished the book, and found it to be a great, great read. I do not really follow horses or horseracing, but you may have made a convert out of me. To read a story so well crafted, and one over 40 years old is quite an accomplishemnt. Congrats on a a great book, I can't wait for the movie!
M. D. Moore <buypurina2000@yahoo.com>
St. Louis, MO USA - Friday, December 27, 2002 at 12:04:36 (EST)
Laura, I just finished reading your book on Seabiscuit for the second time. It is truly on of the best books I have ever read. Seabiscuit was an extraordinary racehorse who touched the lives of so many. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of reliving his life and time. As a racehorse owner I would also be intrested in how to obtain pictures of this great horse to add to my collection. Thank you again for your great work.
John Fike <jfike@packagingcorp.com>
New Albany, OH USA - Friday, December 27, 2002 at 09:03:09 (EST)
I JUST FINISHED YOUR BOOK AND THOUGHT IT WAS GREAT. I WOULD LIKE TO GET SOME OF THE PHOTOS THAT ARE USED IN THE BOOK. DO YOU KNOW OF ANYWAY I COULD PURCHASE SOME OF THEM? THANKS FOR ANY IDEAS YOU MAY HAVE.
SCOTT PETRONE <SCOTT_PETRONE@PRUSEC.COM>
NY, NY USA - Thursday, December 26, 2002 at 14:06:59 (EST)
Congratulations on the multiple Academy Awards, which this movie will surely win. Forgive me for even suggesting that I should write the music for this movie. The obvious genious of this movie's music staff, quite clearly have their act together, and will underpin the overall success of the movie. I cannot vote in the Oscars...but if this music gets anywhere close to the Grammys, you can count on one vote. When your book first came out, I bought several copies to give to my family and friends. Well, at least I've done one thing right in this life. Congratulations, Laura. I am very, very proud of what you have accomplished here and for your noble struggle with CFS. As far as I'm concerned...you've won the "Triple Crown".
Craig William Dayton <craig@craigdayton.com>
Hershey, PA USA - Thursday, December 26, 2002 at 11:38:31 (EST)
Laura, Congrats! By far the greatest book, in any genre, ever written. I am looking forward to the movie (although I am sure it will never live up to your work) and have fallen in love with Seabiscuit. Great job!!!
bobby duke, jr. <cbtreas@yahoo.com>
colonial beach, va USA - Thursday, December 26, 2002 at 10:01:10 (EST)
Laura, I just finished reading the article in Smithsonian magazine about your long ordeal with cfs. I apologize ahead of time if I am one of the many well-intentioned people that have approached you with "have you tried..." I am an acupuncturist in private practice for 17 years afew hours north of you. If you haven't looked into Chinese medicine as part of your strategy for filling your reserve tank I would strongly recommend it. The beauty of this system as well as other indigenious medical systems is their integrative approach to life(and the nature of being human). The question of whether cfs is a body problem or a mind problem is irrevelant in that from this perspective who we are is expressed in all of us- it(we) can't easily be pulled apart. This model also focuses on restoring vitality which is a different orientation than a "western" approach of fighting disease. Particularly important for your support is the clear indication of needing to be nourished at a deep level. Chinese or Ayurvedic herbs are very appropriately prescribed in this context. So, if you are interested in pursuing this conversation feel free to contact me via email. I would be happy to chat further with you and if possible make a referral to someone closer to you.If I am #100 of the suggestion entourage please receive my best wishes for your continued healing. Sincerely, Jim Thomas
Jim Thomas <jlthomas@qis.net>
Taneytown, MD USA - Wednesday, December 25, 2002 at 20:51:33 (EST)
I would love to buy an autographed copy of your book. Could you tell how I could do so. It's a wonderful book. Howard
Howard Siegel <hsward@aol.com>
Jersey City, NJ USA - Wednesday, December 25, 2002 at 20:34:20 (EST)
P.S. Having spent many years around the motion picture business (as well as the horse business) I feel in my heart the director of your movie has caught the FEEL of your wonderful book. The book had a FEELING to it and it is obvious in the trailer that the director/producers have got it. Can't wait!
Martha Cantarini <mjc@secondrunning.com>
Canada - Wednesday, December 25, 2002 at 12:20:50 (EST)
Laure re the trailer: You have accomplished something equally as great and moving as Seabiscuit himself. The trailer was packed with 60 seconds of pure emotion. It may be the biggest treat for theater going audiences in the last 50 years. Bless you!
Martha Cantarini <mjc@secondrunning.com>
Canada - Wednesday, December 25, 2002 at 11:44:28 (EST)
Laura--If the movie is anything like the trailer, I'll be the first in line at the premiere. I love the historical perspective in the trailer--the director obviously respected the approach you took in your book. I am SO pleased. It looks like this courageous little horse and his equally courageous biographer are going to get the recognition they deserve.
Greg <soaringtrumpet@hotmail.com>
albuquerque, nm USA - Wednesday, December 25, 2002 at 02:14:28 (EST)
FROM THE AUTHOR: Want to get a sneak peek at the Seabiscuit feature film, now in production? To see the wonderful first trailer for the film, go to http://www.apple.com/trailers/universal/seabiscuit/ Enjoy! I'd love to hear your comments on it in this space. Thank you and happy holidays!
Laura Hillenbrand
Washington, DC USA - Tuesday, December 24, 2002 at 21:53:40 (EST)
Finally!!!! An appropriate tribute to Seabiscuit, the greatest race horse that ever lived. A most engaging and interesting piece of work -- the author is as talented as the great horse she so appropriately and expertly eulogizes.
Dr. Bill Firman <vetsvette@cfl.rr.com>
Orlando, Fl USA - Tuesday, December 24, 2002 at 15:56:29 (EST)
CYNDI IS THIS YOUR SITE? IF NOT PLEASE LET ME KNOW WHO YOU ARE i AM A BIG SEABISQUIT FAN
CHRIS DEAVERS <GVTCSTABLE@AOL.COM>
NEW LEBANON, OH USA - Monday, December 23, 2002 at 23:52:44 (EST)
Laura, You have written one of the most enjoyable books that I have ever read! I love horse racing, can recall almost all the great horses in my time, so when this book came out I was "giddy" at the thought of learning the history of such a phenomenonal horse as Seabiscuit. I read this book with a constant smile on my face... Thank you for an exceptional book!!
Rob Seiden <oldkorse76@hotmail.com>
Los Angeles, Ca. USA - Monday, December 23, 2002 at 21:17:50 (EST)
Ms. Hillenbrand: Just a note to repeat what I am sure you have been told many times. Although I am just an avid reader, I feel that you have constructed an authored an outstanding history about this great horse and the pepole and industry conneccted with him. I thoroughly enjoyed the book in many different ways. The way I learned about your book was that I was telling a friend that when I was quite young living in Florida, I saw Whirlaway run away from a 4 horse field, wire to wire, I belieive at Hialeah, by about 22 lengths. I told my friend that he was an unattractive horse having a longer than natural body, and built close to the ground, etc. That reminded him of Sea Biscuit, and recommended reading your book. Based upon the facts you related, I definitely think Sea Biscuit is the greatest thorobred thus far, although it is hard to compare horses over a period of about 100 years that take into account variables relating to thorobred racing. I travel to California quite often, and have passed Santa Anita many times without ever going in. However, I now intend to visit it, and see the statues of Sea Bisuict, and Red Polard. Congrats again and will look forward to seeing the Movie, although as usual the book is always much better. Ed Japhe, Atlanta, GA
Ed Japhe <edjaphe@aol.com>
atlanta, ga USA - Monday, December 23, 2002 at 15:13:16 (EST)
Elaine... I just saw your post. I am pleased to learn that Randy will be writing the music. He is a talented and gifted musician/composer. I can't think of a better person to score the music to what will surely be a great movie. (Perhaps I could sharpen Randy's pencils for him. LOL)
Craig William Dayton <craig@craigdayton.com>
Hershey, PA USA - Monday, December 23, 2002 at 12:13:14 (EST)
According to an interview in the San Francisco Chronicle in July, 2002, Oscar winner Randy Newman is set to compose the soundtrack for the movie "Seabiscuit".
Elaine Hamby
Willits, CA USA - Saturday, December 21, 2002 at 16:27:18 (EST)
Dear Laura...it has been quite a while since I last wrote to you. I see that you are still gaining fans. I anxiously await the movie. Even though movies tend to pale in comparison to books, considering the cast, etc., the movie should be fine. I do not know if the production company has picked anyone for the composing and orchestration of incidental music...but, if not, I'd like to through my hat into the ring. If you feel like hearing some of my music, you can do so by going to my website, www.craigdayton.com, and clicking on the "Demos" link. Of course incidental music would be somewhat different than the complete pieces that you hear on my website. I hope that you are doing well and that your health has not been too much of a problem. Best wishes for continued success.
Craig William Dayton <craig@craigdayton.com>
Hershey, PA USA - Saturday, December 21, 2002 at 02:26:14 (EST)
Dear Laura, Thanks for a wonderful book. You write the race scenes with such clarity I felt like I was sitting on Seabiscuit down to each wire. Thanks for introducing me to Red, The Howards, Tom Smith and the rest of the characters. I look forward to the movie.
Brian Spillane <bandvspill@attbi.com>
Quincy, MA USA - Friday, December 20, 2002 at 14:44:17 (EST)
Just finished SEABISCUIT and don't know when I enjoyed a book more. I am giving it to my daughters for Christmas. They grew up on the hunter/jumper circuit in Southern California and I know they will be as thrilled by it as I was since most of the horses they "campaigned" were ex-race horses. Thanks for the "great read"!
Victor Braud <vebraud@msn.com>
Escondido, CA USA - Friday, December 20, 2002 at 14:29:42 (EST)
Ms. Hillenbrand: I am now reading Seabiscuit for the third time and I'm sure it won't be the last. In fact, I love this book so much that I insisted on replacing our SUV license plate with "SEABSKT". When people see it and ask me why "SEABSKT", I tell them about your book. Now I have my own Seabiscuit! Thank you for your efforts in bringing us this wonderful story.
Lindy Carter <mimsey9253@aol.com>
Visalia, CA USA - Thursday, December 19, 2002 at 12:42:27 (EST)
Dear Laura, What a great book, so well written and researched! The descriptions of the races brought me goose bumps! I felt I was right there watching every move. Although I have had little to do with the racing world I have always felt a thin connection with it through two horses that were owned by my wife, Mary. Your book reminded me of this. We are now in our mid fifties, but when we were younger we used to ride a bit. Mary had obtained, when she was 11, a thoroughbred off the track named ROORAG, a beautiful large dark brown filly. (The name is an acronym for a New York Jockey Club, I believe. Perhaps you know of it, "The Royal Order of the Red Assed Goose".) ROO was a grand daughter of Man O War and had raced at Caliente before breaking a sesamoid bone. Her owner died and she was sold with the estate. ROO was in foal when Mary got her and she produced Cassandra ROO. Mary used to jump ROO and the picture of you jumping Double Fault in the Smithsonian article reminded me of Mary and ROO. We both used to ride bareback, Mary on ROO and I on Cassie with just a hackamore. Cassie was the only horse I have ever ridden that would get under me when I was loosing my balance. ROO and Cassie were magnificent animals, so intelligent and full of life. ROO had that classic thoroughbred look and action, but Cassie on the other had, was a little small (about 15 hands), had a dished face, a bit like an arab, and was a little stocky. Overall she looked a bit like a quarter horse. Mary and I were suprised to see just how much she looked like Seabiscuit, especially around the head. On the other hand, ROORAG looked a lot like War Admiral. Your book reminded me of just how amazing these animals can be and how difficult it was to lead the life of a trainer and a jockey. I hope that your battle with CFS is going your way and that you are able to write many more fine works about the equestrian world. Best wishes, John Cornell
John Cornell <carcinus@aol.com>
Saint Cloud, MN USA - Tuesday, December 17, 2002 at 23:35:38 (EST)
Ms Hillenbrand, my little history club selected Seabiscuit for our Dec. book. It brought back some charming memories as I perused the photos, especially of the San Gabriel mountains near Santa Anita. Back in 1976 I was a young Army captain assigned as Aide de Camp to General of the Army Omar N. Bradley who was then the last living 5 star general. A resident of Beverly Hills he often went to Santa Anita (or Hollywood Park) and I frequently went with him. I never really glommed onto horse racing but enjoyed sitting in the VIP paddock, taking the general's bets to the window, and eating the food. I don't recall ever seeing the statues of Seabiscuit or Mr. Woolf. I do remember one day when Gen Bradley placed a $2.00 bet on an old horse that looked like the nag Lee Marvin road in Cat Ballou. I asked him why and he gave me a rational answer so I put $2.00 on him too. From the bell the horse ran way behind the field and I just laughed at the thought of losing $2.00 so foolishly. Then somewhere on the final turn the horse acquired a rocket motor and came roaring down the homestretch. I was jumping up and down screaming "come on ice cream!" The horse won (I won about $50, a good bit of money for a soldier in those days.) What I remember most was Gen Bradley looking at me with a twinkle in his old eyes and chuckling, "I've corrupted another one!" Anyway, thanks for the memory and a great story. John Wood (COL, US Army Ret)
John Wood <johnwood@nc.rr.com>
Cary, NC USA - Tuesday, December 17, 2002 at 12:48:35 (EST)
Dear Laura Hillenbrand, My wife and I are directors of the local library and purchased your Seabiscuit book for our readers. What an excellent job it is! Many kudos to you. Before reading this book I thought the 1978 Belmont Affirmed/Alydar race was the greatest, but now not so sure but that the Seabiscuit/War Admiral match race 40 years earlier may have topped it! (You mentioned that you had a film clip of that race. If you know where I could get a copy, please advise.) Again, emphatic congratulations on a suberb book. Best wishes to you and especially for good health.
Frank East <eastr@westelcom.com>
Essex, NY USA - Tuesday, December 17, 2002 at 10:19:42 (EST)
Good Morning, Laura. As an avid horse racing fan, I cannot say enough good things about your work in Seabiscuit! You have absolutely captured the emotions surrounding thoroughbred horse racing, particularly as it related to the 'Biscuit! Exhilaration and Pain are found in equal measures at every track on Earth, and the 'Biscuit was responsible for his fair share of both during his career. Like many who have posted here, I too have given out more than a few copies of your book to friends as a gift, and even received one from my best friend, which was autographed by yourself. It is one of my most cherished treasures! Also, like many of the posters here, I was concerned when I heard your book was going "Hollywood". However, I spent Saturday on the set of the movie as an extra, and had a chance to speak with some of the cast and crew. I believe that Mr. Ross (the director) has a strong interest in remaining true to the story as you so eloquently told it, and I think most of us will be pleasantly surprised by the final product.
Jeffrey Harbin <jeffresq@hotmail.com>
Bakersfield, CA USA - Monday, December 16, 2002 at 14:12:30 (EST)
Our book group just finished this wonderful book. It was "pitched" by two members, including me, and I am so glad we read it. I do not ride but do love horses, the last "horse book" I read being "Horse Heaven" by Jane Smiley. I really appreciated the thoroughness of the research, but appreciated even more your ability to transport me back to the stirring moments of "the Biscuit's" triumphs (and tragedies.) I wish that the entire nation could again be captivated by a race horse. Thank you for your book and I hope the movie turns out well. Best wishes for improved health. Regards, Nora Rousso
Nora Rousso <nrnjj@attbi.com>
Los Gatos, CA USA - Monday, December 16, 2002 at 02:51:19 (EST)
I really enjoyed your book very much, and I am glad that you fought through your illness to get it done. I read the story about you in the December Smithsonian magazine, and decided to pick up a copy of your book. I hope your health improves, and that you can write some additional novels in the future. I will be sure to watch for any new works of yours. There are many memorable parts of your story, but what I enjoyed the most, after, of course, the head-to-head match race with War Admiral, was the section on all of the techniques and strategies that the jockeys used to keep their weight down. They were all very interesting, and some very tragic as well. Best of luck to you, and thanks for acquainting me with Seabiscuit. I have always been a big fan of horse racing, and my wife and I plan to host a Kentucky Derby party this year. Take care.
Thomas Sosnowchik <sosnowchik2@aol.com>
Warren, OH USA - Sunday, December 15, 2002 at 12:09:09 (EST)
Great book not only for horse racing enthusiasts. Especially the first part of the story is a wonderful way to get in touch with american history. Laura, you did a great job.
Rainer Schwertz
Heidelberg, Germany - Sunday, December 15, 2002 at 09:29:33 (EST)
Thanks so much for an exciting and information packed tale. You captured the times and the essence of the culture perfectly. I wish my father-in-law who covered harness racing under the pen name "Dan Patch" in the '30s and '40s were alive to read this book and talk to me about it. Thanks again!
Marcia Evans <maevans@insight.rr.com>
Blacklick, OH USA - Saturday, December 14, 2002 at 12:23:43 (EST)
Laura, a lot of other people have written you more eloquently than I could, but I have to say, this is the first "horse book" I have been able to get anyone in my family ever to read...and I have read a lot of horse books. AND, they loved it! You are amazing, as was Seabiscuit and those he ran with...
Phyllis
USA - Saturday, December 14, 2002 at 01:23:50 (EST)
Ms. Hillenbrand, thank you for a wonderful book. I felt like I had the priviledge of being at each one of those races you described...I had goosebumps on my arms and hairs raising on the back of my neck as they came down towards the wire. Really an excellent job of not only research and factual reporting, but your story-telling ability is very very good. Thanks again for writing such a great book, on such a wonderful subject. It must have been an incredible amount of work. How very proud of yourself you should be. Thanks again, Suzanne Bassinger
Suzanne Bassinger
USA - Friday, December 13, 2002 at 22:10:40 (EST)
This book is a miracle - I never wanted it to end! As both a lifelong horse lover and book worm, I want to thank you so very much for such an incredible experience.
Dalia <daliamilby@yahoo.com>
Sandpoint, ID USA - Thursday, December 12, 2002 at 18:50:32 (EST)
Congratulations.Seabiscuit is a fantastic book. I really loved reading it. Thank you for your talent to tell good stories. Helio
Helio Lemos <h.lemos@zaz.com.br>
Rio de Janeiro, RJ BRASIL - Thursday, December 12, 2002 at 09:18:34 (EST)
Dear Laura, "My brother made me do it." He purchased and read your book. And,believe me he is not a book reader. In retirement, he is a horse player. He likes those 10 to 1 longshots and is generally a $2.00 type of bettor. What he reads is the Daily Racing Forum. Any race being run in the USA is fair game for him, if he can find that longshot that has a chance. Also, He wants the whip in use constantly from the top of the stretch, if he has money on the horse. Now, I have been the book reader for my entire life, starting with a flashlight under the covers at night. In semi-retirement I continue to read. I am more than glad my brother passed your book along to me. It is a fantastic non-fiction story. Made me shed a tear or two. It is so well written that I cannot even begin to express the pleasure it gave me to read it. I have 'never', in my 64 years, read a non-fiction book that could compare to yours. It is a privilege to have read it. I even read 'Acknowledgements' and 'Notes'. I just could not put the book down...did not want to see it end. Laura, there is a special love you have for horses and it shines through in you writing. I enjoy watching the horses run on TV for an hour or two in the afternoon on GTV. I prefer live action as opposed to soap operas and other such dribble. However, I never knew that a race horse would or could tease or 'stare down' another horse during a race. Your descriptions of the various equine heros in your book has certainly given me a new perspective on horse racing. I will now look at these heros with much more appreciation and wonder as they travel the oval. Thank you for giving me this insight and maybe also 'just a little love' for these wonderful animals. Corona Bill
Bill <novusvir1@yahoo.com>
Corona, CA USA - Thursday, December 12, 2002 at 00:03:41 (EST)
Dear Laura,just finished Seabiscuit a few moments ago, what a wonderful job you have done writing about the greatest underhorse in the history of throughbred racing. The people who were lucky to have known and worked with and loved this great horse, all came alive in the pages of your book. I have been to races at Santa Anita, and wondered about Woolfs statue and its proximity to Seabiscuit's, now i know why. Thank you for reminding us of those tough but great times in our history. Looking forward to the movie. p.s. coindence I live on Santa Anita Rd, ah the fates. jodi
Jo Ann Hayes <jahayes0122@aol.com>
Norco, Ca USA - Wednesday, December 11, 2002 at 19:25:15 (EST)
Dear Laura, I have no words to express the impact that your book made apon me and my husband. We both owned horses in our youth and were deeply moved by the eloquence and magnitude of your book that brought this phenomonal horse back to life so we could all cheer him on again. Today, I discovered your website and am greatly disappointed that I missed out on the premier event for the documentary as we live only a few hours away from Willits. My primary reason for sending this message is to ask you if you are aware of any more events of that kind being planned in the future? Or perhaps you could email me with a name or contact information for the people who organized the Nov. 2 event. Just recently, we traveled to Eureka to spend Thanksgiving with my husband's father and traveling through Willits had a whole new meaning for us. We saw the Frank R. Howard Memorial Hospital as we drove through town and we speculated on the location of the Howard Ranch. Coming back through the Willits area several days later, I found myself looking out over the darkening hills at sunset and wondering if we were north, south, east, or west of an oak tree standing in the fading light that marked the final resting place of the greatest and most unlikely racehorse that ever lived. Thank you for the great gift you have given to all us who love horses and great storytelling, especially when the story is true! Jil
Jil Chadwick <jchadwick@marincounty.net>
Novato, ca USA - Wednesday, December 11, 2002 at 17:07:18 (EST)
What an entrancing look into the history of our country during a time of such hardship. You have shown us how people can overcome incredible obstacles to produce greatness. You are an example of such a person. Thanks for such a fine book. Best of luck with the movie!
Michele Hartung <michelehartung@yahoo.com>
owensboro, Ky USA - Tuesday, December 10, 2002 at 22:07:52 (EST)
My sister in law gave me a copy of your book "on tape". I don't have time to read, but spend a lot of time in the car so it only took me two days to listen to the entire book. I cried at the end, like most people I am sure. It was wonderful and I intend on reading the book now so I can relive and take more time to savor the details. Thanks for introducing this remarkable horse to so many of us too young to remember him.
Joan Reynolds <jnreyno@comcast.net>
Midlothian, VA USA - Tuesday, December 10, 2002 at 20:40:54 (EST)
What a fantastic book! I could hardly put it down. As a lover of both history and horses this was a great story. Thank you Laura for bringing it to us. I'll be first in line for the movie. Scott
Scott Minyard <whpmin@wyoming.com>
Green River, WY USA - Tuesday, December 10, 2002 at 19:31:14 (EST)
I just finished reading your book, Seabiscuit and want to tell you how much I enjoyed it. Iím a 73-year-old man retired and living on Long Island and remember so much of those times growing up as a kid in New York City. As a young man I was not that interest horse racing or betting on horses, but did follow the newspaper stories of the great horses of that era. Your book you put me in the atmosphere of the great horse Seabiscuit and the fascinating people intimately connected to one of the greatest horses of the 20th Century. Thank you so much. I saw you on c-span TV a month or so ago talking about you book and getting a glimpse of your life and struggle writing and coping with your illness. There seems to be another story right there about you and the difficulties of writing under such debilitating circumstance of your sickness. You are without a doubt a beautiful storyteller and I wish you well and future good health you so richly deserve. Thank you again. Joe S
JFSantino <jsantino@att.net>
East Northport , NY USA - Tuesday, December 10, 2002 at 13:48:36 (EST)
I was first introduced to thoroughbred racing approximately 30 years ago when living in New Orleans I was taken to the Fair Grounds. From that time on, I have grown to love the sport tremendously. I have never been much of a gambler although I enjoy trying to pick a few winners from time to time. The amazing thing about the racing industry are the people...what a unique and fascinating group of individuals. I remember talking to Jack Van Berg at the Fair Grounds, D. Wayne Lucas at Santa Anita when I lived in California, and others along the way. They were genuine people, quite happy to say hello and talk to a fan who did not even know them. That is me, the fan, who loves the industry and the many varied things it represents. Laura Hillenbrand has written one of the truly great books I have ever read. It is not just a book about a horse, but a book about people, the history of the times, and what makes this country so great. A country where we have so many opportunites to live and discover so much of interest and enjoyment. Laura, this is a great, great book. That you for giving this to us. Although most to the people mentioned in the book died before I was born...I still felt as if I was living the events. There is no way the movie can be as good as the book, but even if it is 50% as good, it will be a great movie.
Stan Martin <stan886@comcast.net>
Brentwood, TN USA - Monday, December 09, 2002 at 22:29:48 (EST)
I just 12 but i have read the book 3 times. I would like to congrautate the arthur with her sucess.
Simone Levy <levymc@gte.net>
Woodinville, WA USA - Monday, December 09, 2002 at 14:07:01 (EST)
I just started the book Seabiscuit today. I was lucky enough to be able to be a part of the Seabiscuit movie when it filmed at the Santa Anita Race Track last weekend and when a book is made to a movie you know it must be special. I'm looking forward to a very good read. Thank you
Deanna <Deanna_Wright>
Irvine, Ca USA - Sunday, December 08, 2002 at 21:38:19 (EST)
I received Seabiscuit as a birthday present last year. I put off reading it because I was not interested in racehorses. Finally last summer I picked it up and could not put it down. It is one of the best books I've read! I have spread my enthusiasm to my parents, horse instructor, and the general population of Auburn, Indiana. Each person shares my sentiment! Thank you for writing this book. We also recently read the article about you in Smithsonian and we hope you feel better all the time.
Molly Wilson <violin_girl89@yahoo.com>
Auburn, IN USA - Sunday, December 08, 2002 at 10:34:44 (EST)
Seabiscuit was my best read ever! Thank you so much for giving the world this beautifully written book. You are truly a gifted writer. I am not a racing fan, but I was completely pulled into the world of Seabiscuit and found myself on the edge of my seat with the recounting of each race that you so artfully presented. I am now looking forward to reading more of your work. Bravo!!
G. Hugo <gigihugo@aol.com>
Longwood, Fl USA - Sunday, December 08, 2002 at 08:45:21 (EST)
Laura, I just read the Smithsonian article about your CFS problems. (I have CFS also.) The description of the onset of your illness sounds like ciguatera toxin. (You can look this up on the 'net by way of search engine, or I can send you inf. if you would like.) Ciguatera especially causes problems with muscles, apparently; and especially with legs. You will know if this applies to you . . . However, I have another thought about the cause of CFS -- in myself and in a lot of other people. It is the underlying explanation for the eerie similarity of symptoms from CFS to Gulf War syndrome to the new so-called "Syndrome X." And a few other things! You can let me know if you want to hear about that idea . . .
P.F. Jennings <pfj42@medscape.com>
NM USA - Sunday, December 08, 2002 at 03:38:16 (EST)
Laura, I am the owner of www.classicpins.com and Classic Sports Distributors, Inc. I also trained horses at Belmont, Aqueduct and Saratoga from 1990 - 1997. My company is interested in obtaining the license to manufacture Seabiscuit lapel pins and accessories. Can you tell who I might talk to. By the way...the book is awsome! Regards, Lou Blanco
Lou Blanco <lblanco@classicpins.com>
Sandy Hook, CT 06482 - Saturday, December 07, 2002 at 10:13:55 (EST)
Good day. I was recommended your book by two people ~actual strangers on two seperate occasions when I mentioned my chronic illness, CFIDS or Myalgic Encephalitis. I am virtually disabled by it 90% of the time (for 15 yrs now). I have procrastinated purchasing your book due to I can't figure out how it relates to my illness and having limited funds, I'd rather not invest in the book until I find out if it is "the" book they were referring to. Would you kindly let me know if this is the "Seabiscuit" they are referring to (as relates to CFIDS???). Thank you very much in advance ~~ I am very curious since 2 people mentioned it to me (one was a staff member in the emergency room!!!). It sounds like a great book, regardless. Thank you in advance. :-) Tammi
Tammi <dawnsroses@yahoo.com>
Chelmsford, MA USA - Friday, December 06, 2002 at 20:46:35 (EST)
An absolute outstanding, brilliant book. I couldn't put the book down. Laura made everything come to life and the owner, trainer, and jockeys were fascinating. This is easily the best book I have ever read.
Scott McKinstry <bambino3ghr@hotmail.com>
Chico, Ca USA - Friday, December 06, 2002 at 15:00:48 (EST)
Thank you Laura for a truly beautiful book! I received this book as a gift from a friend of my father's who was raving about it to my Dad, and expecting to pass along the book to him (an avid horse race fan) to read. My father passed away unexpectedly before he could get the book, and instead I've now read it and loved every minute. As a child I went to many horse races with my Dad--thanks for making me feel closer to him. Thank you also for capturing that era in American history so well before so much detail could be lost. Smith, Howard, Pollard, and Biscuit were amazing characters!
Karin <kmorris@dvrpc.org>
Philadelphia, PA USA - Friday, December 06, 2002 at 13:32:28 (EST)
Well done! Your extensive research and the story it yielded is nothing short of inspirational - I rank it second only to the Gospel of Luke. I'm looking forward to your next book.
Janell Carson
Herman, NE USA - Friday, December 06, 2002 at 12:14:30 (EST)
Seabiscuit was an excellent book. I Can see why people loved that horse.
Dave PIckett <KPHorseTraining@horsecity.com>
Merrill, Wi USA - Friday, December 06, 2002 at 02:46:50 (EST)
Loved reading the book.It was absolutely riveting. I live in Saratoga Springs, A statue of SEABISCUIT stands in front of the National Racing Museum here. Did SEABISCUIT ever run at our track and if so what was the outcome? Please let me know as I am curious about his association with our beloved famous track in our city.
Gordon Sanders <GorDor4@AOL.com>
Saratoga Springs , NY USA - Thursday, December 05, 2002 at 10:28:07 (EST)
Thank you for the BRILLIANT book about Seabiscuit! I have read it 3 times and I always find somethng new each time. Absolutly beautiful writing and you have captured a wonderful story about an amazing horse. I can hardly wait for the movie! I work as an artist in the horse industry and if possible... I would like to do a portrait of Seabiscuit. Could you let me know if there is a market for this type of painting and where I could obtain a photograph of this amazing horse ......or is it O.K. to use the photos from your book as a reference? Tremendous Book and please keep up the great work, Laura! Phil Cardiff
Phil Cardiff <philcardiff@aol.com>
Dartmouth, ns Canada - Thursday, December 05, 2002 at 10:13:03 (EST)
Dear Ms Hillenbrand, I am sending this e-mail to you for a friend of mine by the name of Celia Hubbard. Celia has been an avid horsewoman all of her life. She is 83 years old and does not have an e-mail address. She asked me to contact you to see if you have a snail mail address as she would like to write to you directly. She said that SEABISCUIT is the best book she's ever read (and she is an avid reader). Please, when you can, please send your address to me so I can pass it on to Celia Hubbard. Thank you. Maureen McGlame (If you care to contact Ms. Hubbard directly you can write to her at 29 Highland St Cambridge, MA. 02138)
maureen mcglame <mmcglame@partners.org>
Boston, MA USA - Thursday, December 05, 2002 at 09:35:11 (EST)
Dear Laura:I read my first seabiscuit book when I was ten, and 35 years later I am being reintroduced by a great writer to this wonderful story. I am a free-lance writer who has worked with horses for over 35 years and I am now trying to get my first novel(fiction), published. Do you have any suggestions? It's about a runaway girl, a runaway horse, and first love of a striking nature. I started it at UC Berkeley 25 years ago. anyway, thanks again for your work. Incredible. sincerely, dana burnett. PS I used to stop at Golden Gate Fields to watch workouts on my way to Berkeley.
dana burnett <dana2@quik.com>
Redmond, Or USA - Wednesday, December 04, 2002 at 12:08:55 (EST)
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, I am partway through your book as we speak, and I just wanted to write and let you know what a gripping story I am finding it to be. This came as something of a surprise to me, seeing as I do not at all take an interest in sports or racing history, so thank you for inspiring in me a new fascination! Also, having just read the article on you in this month's "Smithsonian", I also wanted to say, first, how astonished I was to read about your struggle with CFS and your bringing what must be a powerful inner strength to bear on it, and second, what a breathtakingly beautiful woman you are. Now, I'm off to race to the end of your book!
Jeremy Brett <jeremybrett@excite.com>
Madison, WI USA - Wednesday, December 04, 2002 at 09:51:16 (EST)
Ms. Hillenbrand, Great book, brilliant storytelling. I am sure you have been asked about the St.Christopher's medals. Were there two at the 1940 Hundred Grander? One from Agnes (p.319) and one from Marcela (p.320) or were they one in the same?
Kevin Mulligan <kevin_mulligan@kessler.com>
Chartley, MA USA - Wednesday, December 04, 2002 at 09:31:36 (EST)
Laura: I recently picked up your book the other day. I haven't got to read it yet but my mom is reading it now. I just recently found out that C. S. Howard is my great grandmother's brother and thougt it was interesting and I would like to know more about the family and thought you might be able to help. You can contact me a Jennn1000@aol.com Looking forward to reading the book.
Jennifer <Jennn1000@aol.com>
FL USA - Tuesday, December 03, 2002 at 18:42:00 (EST)
I thoroughly enjoyed the book, but have a question. The last, big race Seabiscuit won was (by your book) March 2, 1940, yet the cover photo shows a winners circle picture dated March 5, 1940. It would surprise me if he had been raced again 3 days later, so I'm guessing one of the dates is incorrect? And odd choice of cover photo, since it doesn't really show Seabiscuit much.
JoAnn <roxymuse@pacbell.net>
San Jose, CA USA - Tuesday, December 03, 2002 at 15:13:15 (EST)
Laura: Somewhere along the line, I read a story about you and your struggle with CFS long before I read Seabiscuit. I picked up the book about four weeks ago, read it in about 10 hours, ran back to the bookstore and bought five more copies to give as Xmas presents, and am spreading the word that it's the best book I've read in the last five years. I Love The Biscuit! Please, oh please, don't let Hollywood compromise anything about his story, and a Big Congratulations and Raves to you for your success, and a Big Thanks to you sharing this wonderful story. And Thanks for getting an old Bookworm so excited -- it's been years since I've recommended a book so highly! Sincerely, Sherry Warner Allen Columbus, Ohio
Sherry Allen <swarner1@columbus.rr.com>
Columbus, OH USA - Tuesday, December 03, 2002 at 13:45:27 (EST)
good work i enjoed it
daniel brow <buttertoastmen@aol.com>
scs, mi USA - Tuesday, December 03, 2002 at 12:55:39 (EST)
Laura, I enjoyed your book very much - I found about it in the LA Times book reviews. I lived in Pasadena as a kid and was familiar with Santa Anita and had heard of Seabiscuit. I saw the old movie (so-so)and really look forward to the new film.
Kevin Masser
Walnut Creek, CA USA - Tuesday, December 03, 2002 at 12:50:58 (EST)
Oh my, I hope Hollyweird doesn't screw up the book....
patricia <trikel@shentel.net>
strasburg, va USA - Monday, December 02, 2002 at 16:40:25 (EST)
Laura, My father (Russell M. Lane) asked me to see if I could find a "snail" mail address for you. He grew up in Pawtucket, RI and would like to write to you concerning your research for your book, which he is enjoying reading currently. He does not have access to a computer and asked me to try to track it down. Please respond to me directly. Thank you! And hopefully soon I will find the opportunity to also read your book, as it comes highly recommended by my Dad and your other Guestbook visitors. Thank you!
Patti Lane <plane@mfs.com>
Tewksbury, MA USA - Monday, December 02, 2002 at 16:34:24 (EST)
Dear Laura Hillenbrand, I just read your article in this months Smithsonian, and I want to say "Bravo" for coming out of the closet about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I have been trying to live with it, work full time, and get my writing career going--for three years now. I know the frustration of trying to get doctors, co-workers, and even loved ones to understand the serious nature of this debilitating disease. But I write you tonight to share with you the recipe for my 90% recovery!! I have been following this ritual for four months now--and like I said--I went from feeling 20% like myself on a good day, to 90% back to normal on an average day. Here it is: * 3 oz drinkable Aloe Vera Juice (Twice a day) (I mix it with cran or apple juice, to help it go down!) *Oxygenating Colon Cleanzer (4 caplets twice a night on an empty stomach. A few nights a week.) *Plant Enzymes (twice a day with food) *Grape seed anti-oxidant(twice a day with food) *At least a gallon of water a day, try to eat right...NO Alcohol. This worked for me, and I have tried everything. I hope you try it out--it can't hurt!! Oh, almost forgot--I've been going to a great lady for acupuncture...don't know which part is the key--so try everything. And people love your book--I'm going to pick it up. Good Luck!! Raini e-mail Raini1177@aol.com
Raini Caravella <Raini1177@aol.com>
Manorville, NY USA - Monday, December 02, 2002 at 01:11:05 (EST)
I just found this site and think it's great! My sister and I drove to Lexington two weeks ago to be extras in the Seabiscuit scenes filmed at Keeneland. Would love to hear from any other folks there that day! It was VERY COLD, but would do it all over again. Great book, hope the movie will be just as good!
Joyce Patci <affirmed4ever@yahoo.com>
Columbia, MO USA - Saturday, November 30, 2002 at 19:33:22 (EST)
I am a bookaholic in that I buy many more books at one time than I can read in the foreseeable future. Seabiscuit has been languishing in my "staging" area since it was first released. I started it this morning at around 9am, thinking it would be one of those books that would take me a couple of days to read. Had to take a 2 1/2 hour break to take my lab for his monthly acupuncture treatment. Finished the book at 6pm this evening. What an absolutely wonderful book. Wonderful story, wonderful writing. I told my husband it was like you were THERE, you were at those races. Your writing brought it so alive. My hat is off to you Laura Hillenbrand, and I thank you for bringing me a day of reading pleasure.
Phyllis McQueen <pmcqueen@ix.netcom.com>
Fox River Grove, IL USA - Saturday, November 30, 2002 at 19:18:08 (EST)
Thank you for the wonderful book. I'm not a big time reader but I've been a race fan many years.My father and I spent a lot of afternoons at Santa anita del mar hollywood park so on and even then I didn't realize the history of seeing someone like Johnny Longden, or many of the great horses even Bing Crosby that such a great story played it's self out right there.What a great horse.Thank you very much.
garth mariani <gizmo 1053@cs.com>
poca, wv USA - Friday, November 29, 2002 at 22:49:58 (EST)
What a thouroughly enjoyable book. I am going to the Sta Anita track today, just to see where he ran. Two years ago I had my harness horse @ Equitana West/Del Mar, and told my little one who ran there a long long time before him. It's that kind of history that matters to me!
chris light-orr <clightorr@hotmail.com>
phoenix, az USA - Friday, November 29, 2002 at 12:27:30 (EST)
Dear Laura You have written one of the most compelling books that I have personally ever read. From both a historical perspective and also the personalities that you have woven together like strands of silk you have an amazing skill of placing the reader " right on the Saddle" so to speak. You have given to us such a perspective that I felt like I was either riding the horse with Red Pollard or George Woolf or one of the Insiders in the Howard Stables. Not only do I wish to see you produce a movie, but I would also like to see you Laura go out a lecture as to your tremendous time and effort the you have obviously put into this vast compulation of both history and dynamic personalities. I have too many questions to ask in this forum and a lecturing circuit would give to us readers the ability to see some of the various photos and letters and historcial data that you have compiled and the stories were probably way to many to even place in this book. I am personally quite honored to have read such a wonderful and outstanding book and if you ever go on the lecture circuit please let me know as I would be one of the first ones to attend and I "Truly" Thank You for all of the time and effort you have placed in this compelling piece of art we call "The SeaBiscuit" You Laura have touched my life with this book as Seabiscuit has touched the Horse racing world with his courage and stamina, you too have displayed the same traits of both courage and an unbelievable amount of stamina in writing this magnificent book. I wonder which is truly the real winner here "Seabiscuit" or you the "tireless author" Many Thanks Brian D. Carr-President Maverick Oil & Gas, Inc.
Brian <Brainmedr@aol.com>
Charlotte, NC USA - Friday, November 29, 2002 at 02:07:35 (EST)
i would like to hear again from the person whomis writing a biography of joe hernandez. i misplaced his email.
mike gettelman <rcrower@aol.com>
berkeley, ca USA - Thursday, November 28, 2002 at 16:30:25 (EST)
Thank you so much for your magnificent book. It was an emotional experience. I burst into tears several times while reading it. Also felt joy. And I was so glad to find out that Seabiscuit's last years were such happy ones.
Nancy Bell <matya_98@yahoo.com>
Palatine Bridge, NY USA - Thursday, November 28, 2002 at 13:30:42 (EST)
I loved your book. I had heard of the horse,but was unsure of his back ground. They started shooting the here in the city that live in ky & I grow very interested in the story. I hope that the is movie is as greatbook...
sharon <ginsharon@aol.com>
paris, ky USA - Wednesday, November 27, 2002 at 20:39:15 (EST)
Congratulations on a real masterpiece. The quality of your research and your superb diction made Seabiscuit the best book I've read in the last ten years. One correction, however: on pg. 210, you refer to a mile and a quarter workout by War Admiral in 208 1/4 as trotting horse time. That would be correct for a standardbred then--but at a distance of a mile, not a mile and a quarter. Also, some excellent standardbred biographies (e.g., Ron Bisman's work on Cardigan Bay, the legendary New Zealand import for Stanley Dancer, who in 1968 became the first pacer to win a million dollars) include a section at book's end which has the brief chart of each of the horse's races and a year-by-year summary of his on-track efforts. Perhaps you could include this in your next edition. Do you know where I could find a copy of Seabiscuit's racing lines? Thank you.
William Waters <williamwaters@hotmail.com>
Gloucester City, NJ USA - Wednesday, November 27, 2002 at 17:30:26 (EST)
Knew nothing about horses and horseracing....now know much more. I leaped out of my chair when the Biscuit beat War Admiral! Thank you. You made an era come alive.
addison myers <AMyers@aol.com>
Columbia, MO USA - Wednesday, November 27, 2002 at 14:30:47 (EST)
Dear Laura, Thank you for delivering a touching and powerful story about the triumph of desire for both man and horse. I have loved horses most of my life, I knew about the outcome of the Seabiscuit/ War Admiral race but as I read the passage I felt an unbdeniable surge of excitment as if I were hearing about that particular race for the first time. In this era of pampered and overpaid athletes (both 2 and 4 legged) your book reminded me that heart counts for more than money, more than facilities, more than the endless legalities, contract terms, or endorsements. True champions win because the desire burns within them, not because of some dollar amount. The story of Seabiscuit has a universal appeal. The small forgotten horse, the out of place trainer, and the wounded jockey all converge by the most random of accidents to produce a shocking miracle. Your telling of the story was masterful and touched me in a way I haven't felt since I put down my own small forgotten horse more than 15 years ago. Well done.
Michael Forney <Mikef@aheadcap.com>
New Bedford, MA USA - Wednesday, November 27, 2002 at 14:07:12 (EST)
Has "Seabisquit" been translated into German? I have a young friend that would truly relish this book but English is her second language and I know that her enjoyment will be greater if I can get it in her native language of German.
Donna Clark Johnson <donna.j@earthlink.net>
Austin, Tx USA - Wednesday, November 27, 2002 at 03:12:58 (EST)
I think that the best feeling in the world is to be on horseback. That is why I have decided that I want to become a jockey. I have had inspiration from my riding instructor and the book. I want to say that Seabiscuit is the best horse book ever~ON THE BACK OF A HORSE THERE ARE NO LIMITS~
Kirsten <rpizzaz@hotmail.com>
Ohio USA - Tuesday, November 26, 2002 at 16:32:48 (EST)
My daughter Kirsten is 13. She has been riding horses since she was 7. She loves horses so much and dreams of becoming a jockey one day. She submitted a resume for the movie- but has not heard anything to date. She would love to be involved in the movie- even if it would mean cleaning stalls- she has her heart set on it. Is there a chance for her? We do not have the money to buy her a horse- but she really is an accomplished rider.
Cathie Pesa <youn_clp@access-k12.org>
Youngstown, Oh USA - Tuesday, November 26, 2002 at 12:41:28 (EST)
The unabridged audiobook of "Seabiscuit: An American Legend" (Richard M. Davidson, reader) can be purchased $44.95 (#RD431-5W) CD $116 (#C1542-5W) or rented ($17.50) from Recorded Books Direct, 1-800-636-3399, or www.recordedbooks.com The abridged version's reader, Campbell Scott, is better, but this is the entire UNABRIDGED book and for that reason, it's a must have.
maggie van ostrand <mamacita@frazmtn.com>
pine mountain, ca USA - Monday, November 25, 2002 at 11:23:35 (EST)
I have a 16"x20" original photograph in excellent condition of seabiscuit with jockey gilbert on board in the standing still position,also two gentlemen who look like owner/trainer jockey has the letter H on his jersey also the letter H on seabiscuits blinders and blanket in the backround,looks like the winners circle with people looking on. this is a standing still excellent picture. Was wondering if anyone would be interested in purchasing this picture,and what it could be worth. Or could you direct me to anyone that you are aware of looking for original pictures of sea biscuit. This has to be 1930s photograph. Thank You, Mark Phone (518)237-2094
Mark Hagadorn <mphag@aol.com>
Cohoes , NY USA - Sunday, November 24, 2002 at 21:55:57 (EST)
I have a 16"x20" original photograph in excellent condition of seabiscuit with jockey gilbert on board in the standing still position,also two gentlemen who look like owner/trainer jockey has the letter H on his jersey also the letter H on seabiscuits blinders and blanket in the backround,looks like the winners circle with people looking on. this is a standing still excellent picture. Was wondering if anyone would be interested in purchasing this picture,and what it could be worth. Or could you direct me to anyone that you are aware of looking for original pictures of sea biscuit. This has to be 1930s photograph. Thank You, Mark Phone (518)237-2094
Mark Hagadorn <mphag@aol.com>
Cohoes , NY USA - Sunday, November 24, 2002 at 21:50:58 (EST)
I had the experience of reading your book via an audiobook and it was great. The narrator was excellent. I laughed & cried & was heartbroken for Howard when Seabiscuit finally passed at the young age of 14 years. As a horse lover I was happy to learn that Seabiscuit had an owner who loved & respected him. I wish every horse was that lucky. I have to ask, what happened to Pumpkin?
Kara <kmgdp@netzero.net>
Newtown, CT USA - Saturday, November 23, 2002 at 19:26:20 (EST)
First off; I have not read your book, in fact had never heard of it until yesterday when the latest copy of 'Smithsonian' arrived and I will be reading the article about you and 'Seabiscuit'. It caught my eye because when I was in WWII I was in a B25 Squadron, The 500th Sq 345th Bomb Group 5th Air Force in the SW Pacific and some of our B25s were named after race horces. One was named 'Seabiscuit'. In the book 'Warpath Across The Pacific' by Lawrence J Hickey, an illustrated history of the 345th bombardment group during world war II, is a history of the start and finish of 'Seabiscuit'. There is also a picture of the plane. The pilot who it flew to the SW Pacific from the US lives in Georgia and one of his crew who later went down with the plane off Formosa was a friend of mine. I have a photo of him with me and another buddy, who lives in Florida, taken while we were in Sydney on leave. If you would like some stories about 'Seabiscuit' and the missions it was on from the book and a picture let me know and and I will see about making copies. Now I will go and read the article. Ben Muller
Benjamin T Muller <ben@benmuller.net>
Houston, TX USA - Saturday, November 23, 2002 at 12:10:25 (EST)
I would like to thank Ms. Hillenbrand for her wonderful book on Seabiscuit. Though I have never really known much on the world of horseracing, I found her story to be compelling and completely absorbing. A superb read!
Curt Matern <kevorkaman@mindspring.com>
Atlanta, GA USA - Saturday, November 23, 2002 at 01:43:19 (EST)
Hello: Just finished the book on the plane home this afternoon. My copy is going to be passed on to several friends who are lining up to read it! Great read! Alex
Alex <info@amazonherbcompany.net>
san francisco, ca USA - Friday, November 22, 2002 at 11:54:59 (EST)
Laura, I was at Lexington all last week being a background actor in your movie 'Seabiscuit'. I wrote a daily dairy of my adventure to send to my siblings and children so they could vicariously enjoy the experience with me. Would you like to read it? I would be honored. I am thinking of purchasing 9 copies of your book for Christmas presents. How could I get autographed copies? What a great story. I hope the movie is a blockbuster.
Jim O'Donnell <jim_odonnell@yahoo.com>
Cincinnati, oh USA - Friday, November 22, 2002 at 11:50:07 (EST)
The producers of the movie are seeking more extras for large crowd scenes that will be filmed at Santa Anita in December. To register as an unpaid background player, go to the Web Site for the company recruiting the crowds: www.beinamovie.com. Scenes will be shot Dec. 7th and 13th at the racetrack. FYI...over 4100 extras were recruited for filming in Lexington, Ky several weeks ago. Extras who participate receive free food and beverages while on set and are eligible for assorted prize giveaways, including VIP passes to the Kentucky Derby, the Breeders Cup ad the movie's world premiere next year in Hollywood. Other prizes will be given away as well! If you've read the book and live in the area, what a way to be a part of this legendary story.
Dave Stubbs <stubbies4@juno.com>
So. Calif., USA - Friday, November 22, 2002 at 10:35:29 (EST)
I received an invitation from Yahoo! today to join their new discussion group on the movie, Seabiscuit. If you also receive this invitation (I think they get our edresses from this site, BE SURE YOU READ YAHOO'S PRIVACY POLICY. They can ask for personal information you shouldn't put on the internet, like your social security number. Please be cautious and know that movie info will also appear here. BE CAREFUL!
maggie van ostrand <mamacita@frazmtn.com>
pine mountain, ca USA - Wednesday, November 20, 2002 at 11:14:28 (EST)
I use to raise and train a few racehorses, and hope to someday be able to get back into it. I have never read any book that every page was so interesting and intriging. I loved every page of this book, and want to thank you so much for writing it, for I really belive that this book and the movie will help horseracing tremendously. I know that you plan on writing about a human athlete next. I wish that sometime you would have the desire to write about Man O' War.He is one of my very favorites of all time. Your writing talent would make it a most awsome book, and I know there is alot of info about him that alot of people don't know about.It seem like video footage and info on him is under lock and key.Anyway I hope you will think about it. Wishing you the best of health. God Bless. Brenda
Brenda Terry <aphrodite2@earthlink.net>
Weiser, ID USA - Wednesday, November 20, 2002 at 01:18:30 (EST)
If my count is correct, I am the ninth person in our family to read this particular copy of SEABISCUIT. It all started this summer(2002) with a copy I gave mt wife. We have since presented several other copies to friends and relatives. Thank you from ALL of us for the pleasure we now treasure. Gotta go now time for me to read it! Happy Holidays, God Bless! Jim Collinson
Jim Collinson <jescpop@yahoo.com>
Westminster, MD USA - Tuesday, November 19, 2002 at 20:44:19 (EST)
I just finished a week of shooting the Seabiscuit movie at Keeneland as a "background actor." It was an honor and a privilege I will not soon forget. I cheered for War Admiral (hey, somebody had to.) It didn't stretch my limited acting abilities as much to emote the disappointment of backing yet another loser. I have had extensive experience in that regard. The film will be a first class production. Many will say it is the best movie about racing yet made; some will even venture to say it is the best sports movie ever made. I really believe that.
Lee Jenkins <ljenkins@cinci.rr.com>
Lebanon, OH USA - Tuesday, November 19, 2002 at 16:14:09 (EST)
I expected to like your book because of its subject - one of the few regrets I have is that I was too young to ever see Seabiscuit in (his) person. I knew about and admired Seabiscuit when I was very young, though I have never been able to remember how or when that happened. As an adult I have tried to be on the rail when many other exceptional horses saddled up and paraded onto the track to run like Forego, Ruffian and Secretariat. All great horses, and I'd still trade seeing them (well, except maybe Forego) for one chance to have met Seabiscuit. But your book was more than good. You captured the power of the experience when you get to truly meet a thoroughbred. I have met many admirable and noble horses of all breeds, but nothing in my life has ever matched the courage, the intellect, the intoxication of the thoroughbred. While I was riding and showing I was lucky enough to have owned the "once in a lifetime" thoroughbred show horse, no small piece of luck in the few years that I could afford the cost and time of that avocation. It is an experience that both enriches and saddens your life. The magic of Seabiscuit is that he was a once in many lifetimes horse, and from scanning your guestbook entries it seems that your book has done much to help people understand that. You honor him well, and I hope the movie they are shooting does credit to your work as well as Seabiscuit and the people who loved him.
Celia M
NY USA - Tuesday, November 19, 2002 at 14:48:47 (EST)
Dear Laura, My name is Nancy Polk, and I own Normandy Farm here in Lexington. I loved your book, and the Seabiscuit production company chose our barn to represent War Admirals home barn in the movie. I am writing to you on behalf of Diane Perkins, who is a friend and an older lady who does not use the internet. She asked me if I could try to contact you and arrange a connection between the two of you either by telephone or by mail. Diane is the grand-niece of Gladys Phipps of the Wheatley Stables. She has lived with horses all of her life, and she and her husband owned Lord at War, among many other good horses. She owns a farm in Argentina, just sold Wimborne Farm here, and still trains and runs horses here under Wimborne Stables. Diane is trying to publish a book that would highlight about fifteen of the best horses that were bred in South America and came to great success here in the U.S. She mentioned Like A Miracle, Forli, Cougar, Dorine, and Lord At War, among others. I understand that she has a great deal of material, including pictures and stories about these horses. She seems to envision a kind of coffee table book, with a great number of pictures. She is looking for someone to put together this book for her as she does not have the time to do it herself. She does possess an amazing amount of knowledge about horses and racing. She has read Seabiscuit and admired your style of writing. She would appreciate the opportunity to speak with you to explore the possibility of pursuing this venture. She is willing to pay and include a portion of the profits to make the project happen. Thank you for reading this, and we will hope to hear from you. My e-mail is nkpolk@aol.com, or I can be reached at my office at 859-294-9595. Sincerely, Nancy Polk
Nancy Polk <nkpolk@aol.com>
Lexington, Ky. USA - Monday, November 18, 2002 at 23:18:05 (EST)
Incredible book. I could not put it down. Thank you for writing such a captivating and touching story. I'm off to Saratoga to see the Seabiscuit exhibit at the Racing Museum.
Lisa <lbella1588@aol.com>
Boston, MA USA - Monday, November 18, 2002 at 20:54:41 (EST)
great read. by any chance do you happen to know anything about Judy Howard granddaught to CSH and my room-mate at Flintridge Boarding School in Pasadena in 1957.
Penny Spray <centavo2@aol.com>
Paradise Valley, AZ USA - Monday, November 18, 2002 at 13:30:42 (EST)
Laura - Best book ever! Thank you, thank you for inspiring me to write once again. I've pointed my copy into the faces of my best friends in the last week. I'll make sure all of them have the chance to indulge in my favorite topics: great writing and horses! Thanks again.
Leslie B <blueshelties@yahoo.com>
Cincinnati, OH USA - Monday, November 18, 2002 at 13:03:09 (EST)
Laura, I had heard raves about this book for a long time. I just got back from a week in the Bahamas: Saved it specifically to read on my trip. I'm 49, retired naval officer, and have loved the races since I was in college. My parents were both born in 1921,and I would find myself wondering what they were doing during Seabiscuit's journey. The book was captivating. Two short lines in particular grabbed me: When you wrote "Their crowded hour had begun" it made me eager to read on. And, when Tom Smith died "almost no one came"...How tragic. In any case, thank you... we'll be looking forward to the movie.
John Giglio <Johngiglio@aol.com>
Mt Vernon, NY USA - Monday, November 18, 2002 at 10:51:10 (EST)
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, My motherís recent interest in your book has inspired me to purchase a copy for myself. Yesterday, she endured the gusting winds and chilly temperature at Lexingtonís Keenland to be an extra in the upcoming film. She excitedly reported to us last night of her experience and newfound stardom. I would love to surprise her with a personally signed copy of your book. Do you have any upcoming book signings or accommodate such requests? She is a deserving fan of your work and I hope you can help me with this request. Thanks for your consideration and providing such a positive experience for my mother. Sincerely, James McGinnis mcgjam@hotmail.com
J. McGinnis <mcgjam@hotmail.com>
Fleminsburg, KY USA - Monday, November 18, 2002 at 06:51:13 (EST)
I am not a reader. I don't like reading. I just finished your book...it took me only 2 days. I couldn't put it down. And I cried at the end while reading about the deaths of all of the incredible characters, who I grew to love after only 48 hours. My hat is off to you Laura because you created a magnificent book that tugs on the heart-strings while teaching history in a way that I actually wanted to sit through. I learned so much, and am forever changed. I live minutes from where Tom Smith is buried, and it broke my heart to hear that hardly anyone attended his funeral. I plan to visit his grave this week to pay my respects, and I will tell him that he is forever a part of this world thanks to you. Thank you for all of the hard work you put into this book. It has changed me and made me a reader.
Katie <iloveadrenaline@hotmail.com>
Burbank, CA USA - Monday, November 18, 2002 at 02:24:05 (EST)
A Good read with all of the ingredients for a blockbuster movie I would think
Gary French <irgary@sbcglobal.net>
Reno, Nv USA - Sunday, November 17, 2002 at 13:09:43 (EST)
Loved the book, and just came from a restaurant (Dudley's) where we had a great time watching some of the movie cast, who had no idea that we existed... and never will, unless I get my dream role of Soap Opera bitch (not likely given that I've never acted before, except when I was trying to hook my hubby).
jane fields <pohlfam@qx.net>
Lexington, Ky USA - Saturday, November 16, 2002 at 21:56:45 (EST)
Re: Illustrated Edition. I inherited from my father five 3" X 4" etchings of reknowned race horses drawn and signed by Rita Swann. On the back of each matted etching is a date: 3/6/46, which I assume was the date they were pressed from the original plates. The horses are: Stagehand, Johnstown, Discovery, War Admiral and Seabiscuit. During her career, Swann was also a writer and photographer for Washington, DC and Baltimore news papers. Being curious about these marvelous etchings I did some research and found that the original plates might be available in the University of Baltimore Langsdale Library Special Collections, but I have not confirmed that. (see: http://archives.ubalt.edu/swn/table.htm) If I can be of assitance please let me know. Best Regards, J.O. Wallace, Middleburg, VA
J.O. Wallace <jivacoolit@yahoo.com>
Middleburg, VA USA - Saturday, November 16, 2002 at 21:54:10 (EST)
Laura, My daughter gave me a copy of your wonderful book, which I am just starting to read. I read somewhere that as a child you would go to a family farm next to the Antietam Battlefield. Since we live in Sharpsburg, I am wondering if you can identify the farm for me. Can you tell me where it is in relation to the Battlefield? My daughter is involved with a horse retirement organization just east of town on a beautiful 300-acre farm, which takes old military, police,and theraputic riding horses and gives them a loving home for the rest of their lives. Jan
Jan Wetterer <Jewett15@aol.com>
Sharpsburg, MD USA - Saturday, November 16, 2002 at 15:12:38 (EST)
I just finished your wonderful and enriching book. Thank you for your meticulous resarch in presenting this uniquely American story. I hope that you continue the very hard work of writing. I look forward to reading your work in the future. All the best.
Jerry Geraghty <geraghty7@aol.com>
Lutherville, MD USA -
Dear Laura, As a lifelong race fan I congratulate you. what you have acheived is like a magic show from first to last. You have breathed life into a magical time in horse racing and allowed us the readers to be transported back in time. My equine hero is Mill Reef ,but I am now Biscuit man ,thankyou
jim r glennon <jimrglennon@fsmail.net>
london, england - Thursday, November 14, 2002 at 09:20:27 (EST)
Just finished your book again for the second time! Recently, the Hollywood film crew filming Seabiscuit, the upcoming movie, left Saratoga Springs (where I work) and after all the excitement, I had to read your book again! However, I and quite a few others, have one big gripe!! Who I earth choose that horrible cover photo (minus the horse's better half!) for your book?? So many gorgeous photos exist of Seabiscuit, including the one upon the opening of your website!!! Why not use that one, it's a great horse & rider shot!!?? Everyone opened the book cover hoping to see Seabiscuit's beautiful other half and were sorely disappointed!! Huge mistake Andy Carpenter! No one cares about seeing the radio announcer!! Without the horse, those other people wouldn't have had the lives they had. Laura, you definitely would have sold more copies with a gorgeous head or full body shot of Seabiscuit. Best of luck in all your future endeavors!!!
Deborah <adirondackshewolf@yahoo.com>
Glens Falls, NY USA - Wednesday, November 13, 2002 at 16:10:34 (EST)
Laura, I picked up Seabiscuit based on the recommendation of a friend, and thoroughly enjoyed it. I listened to it on tape on my way to work, and was amazed how quickly the 45 minute commute seened to go. I canít say Iím much of a horse personóIíve never owned one, been to a race, or read about either, but I found Seabiscuit fascinating. I expect thatís because you did a phenomenal amount of research. Your ability to weave all the details you accumulated into your narrative was also impressive. Iím looking forward to your next book, even if itís not about a subject that appeals to me.
Keith <k1leu@earthlink.net>
Washington, DC USA - Wednesday, November 13, 2002 at 12:55:04 (EST)
Miss Hellebrand, I loved your book. It was rivetting. It was thorough and concise. I too have written a book about horses, and was wondering if you could tell me what steps I should take in getting it published. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to email me. Thank you, and thank you for your wonderful book! Robin
Robin <RBia106823@aol.com>
NJ USA - Wednesday, November 13, 2002 at 07:50:44 (EST)
this was the best book i've ever read, i bought it at the airport and had finished it a few days into my holiday, it usuall takes me weeks to finish a book. the story was fantastic, almost unbelievable. it was fantastically written and i would urge any horse racing fan to buy this book
chris <chrisdixon2003@yahoo.com>
england - Tuesday, November 12, 2002 at 20:39:56 (EST)
Dear Ms Hillenbrand, I've never before written to an author, so you gotta know that I was mightily impressed with this wonderful book! As a horse lover, of course I had to read it first and foremost because it was about a horse. BUT, what an interesting slice of Americana, the Depression, and the terrible travails that jockeys must subject themselves to! I came away much the richer for having read your book, and look forward to reading more of your work. I just have one complaint, on behalf of that wonderful little horse, who, I'm sure, would have spoken up, too: for a biography of Seabiscuit, it would have been nice to have a Complete photo of him on the front cover of your book. (Somehow I have the feeling that you had no say over this?). What a heroic, spunky spirit he was. He deserved at least that! Thank you so much, Pam Stevenson (A new fan)
Pam Stevenson
USA - Tuesday, November 12, 2002 at 19:44:54 (EST)
Your work did justice to a great horse and interesting time in our history. You developed episodic suspense each chapter. I puzzled over brevity final chapter and concluded you didn't wish to dwell in passing and that was ok. I have never encountered acknowledgments that were as interesting as main. Horses and racing touch nerves in us all and you guided us through a special few years of history and brought us home with sure handed reins.
Patrick <Packacards@juno.com>
Churchton, MD USA - Tuesday, November 12, 2002 at 19:16:20 (EST)
One of the most inspiring(on MANY levels)books I've ever read. Who'd believe it if it wasn't true. I see that PBS will be airing the 'Biscuit documentary on April 21,2003. Also, my father-in-law is the nephew of Lew ("Lemuel")"Whitey" Whitehill; he has many personal letters and cards from George Woolf addressed to Lew and Louise(Lew's wife)Whitehill with whom he lived with in San Diego while racing at Caliente. Whata'book!!!! Thanks Laura.
Alan Landau <alandau@ucsd.edu>
San Diego, Ca USA - Tuesday, November 12, 2002 at 15:13:46 (EST)
I am currently reading your wonderful book, and I know I'll be sorry when I come to its end. I look forward to the movie. When I was younger I was totally "horse crazy". One question, however -- Why wasn't Seabiscuit's head included in the cover photo?? It seems a strange omission.
Carmen <clwilliams@heartland.net>
Red Oak, IA USA - Monday, November 11, 2002 at 18:10:37 (EST)
loved the book --- can't wait for the movie-- the jockey kiled in mexico was my uncle "Sullivan"
d l smith <nmiamidls@aol.com>
bensalem, pa USA - Monday, November 11, 2002 at 17:14:35 (EST)
Thank you for writing such a marvelous book. You brought the era and the horse to life. Made it just like being there. I recently visited the Ridgewood Ranch for the documentary film premiere showing the races you described. All I can say is wow.The church that now owns the place made offices out of the house and barn where Seabiscuit lived, so good thing we had your book. Do you you what ever happened to the remaing children of the Howards that would let the place go to pot and sell it?
jan lutz <jlrunfast@aol.com>
monterey, ca USA - Monday, November 11, 2002 at 14:27:25 (EST)
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, I am an unknown, unpublished writer (Of questionable reputation) living in the "best little buggy shed in Boise" (Gary Stevens country, you can get the best chilidog in the world at the Les Bois racetrack) Good book. Good read. A nice picture of you too. (If possible, you should contact every "contributing member" of your gene pool and thank them for your pretty appearance) You wrote this book while endur- ing Chronic Fatigue Syndrome? That is an incredible accomp- lishment. Congratulations.
G.V. Sciscoe <GVSPRESS@aol.com.>
Boise, ID USA - Sunday, November 10, 2002 at 19:34:42 (EST)
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, I felt compelled to tell you how much I enjoyed your wonderful book about Seabiscuit. I was totally drawn into the story and felt sad when it had to end. I learned a lot, felt a lot of compassion and was very touched by the Biscuit's life story. He was truly a remarkable athlete that you made come to life for those of us who weren't around when he lived. Thank you for a wonderful book that I couldn't put down and that I am recommending to everyone I know. Sincerely, Marianne
Marianne Bartlett <marianne_bartlett@hotmail.com>
Weddington, NC USA - Sunday, November 10, 2002 at 11:56:23 (EST)
Hello Laura, I have a snapshot of Seabiscuit that you might like to have for your new photo book. You might remember, we were corresponding in June 2001 when I sent you some pages I had written about my childhood on Ridgewood Ranch when my Dad worked there in the 1940's. I have a snapshot of him on Seabiscuit after the horse was retired from racing. It is similar to one of the photos I sent you last year, but the subjects are a little closer and the quality of the photo is better. Let me know if you would like to have a good copy. I cannot part with the original. My sister Betty and I were honored to be guests at the west coast premiere of the Seabiscuit documentary at Ridgewood Ranch last Saturday. The documentary is so well done, and we were so delighted to see you in the film. You are a beautiful and gracious young lady. Sincerely, Laverne
Laverne (Jones) Booth <ljbooth@thevine.net>
Hesperia, CA USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 20:10:52 (EST)
Dear Laura, Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the book. The story is a great one but the way you tell it is what makes it extra special.One amazing thing about the book is that it's a great read for a person that has never seen a horse race or someone who has spent their whole life around the racetrack.I talked about the book with one vetran trainer who said "It's the best book ever written about horse racing period."I am also a collector of horse racing memorabilia and have several Seabiscuit items including a souviner program from the match race and a Seabiscuit horseshoe that is mounted on a wood pipe holder and has a plaque that reads "from Chuck Howard with fondest regards, Seabiscuit 1940."Thanks again and I look forward to your future writings. Matt
Matt <anvilclank@aol.com>
Arcadia, Ca. USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 15:40:31 (EST)
I recently purchased a First Edition of Seabiscuit for my boss. He is a HUGE fan of the book, talks about it endlessly, so this will be a birthday gift for him. I would absolutely LOVE to have it signed by you, to make it even more valuable to him. Is there somewhere I could send the book for your signature? Many thanks!
Jamie Hubbard <jamieh@orpp.com>
Houston, TX USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 14:25:55 (EST)
I READ SEABUISCUT AN AMERICAN LEGEND OVER A YEAR AGO, AND READ IT AGAIN, AND AGAIN. THE WAY YOU WROTE THE STORY MADE ME FEEL I WAS LIKE A FLY ON THE WALL, WATCHING THE STORY PLAY OUT. YOU HAVE A WONDERFUL SENSE OF PUTTING WORDS ON PAPER. I LOVE HORSE RACING, AND THE HISTORICAL CONTEXT IN WHICH YOU WROTE THIS STORY I DON'T THINK CAN BE DUPLICATED. I WANT TO THANK YOU FOR A GREAT BOOK, AND I AM LOOKING FORWARD WITH GREAT ANTICIPATION ON THE MOVIE, BUT I AM HOPING THE MOVIE AT LEAST GETS CLOSE TO THE VISION THAT IS IN MY MIND ABOUT ALL THESE WONDERFUL PEOPLE, AND AN ABSOLUTELY GREAT RACEHORSE WHO I THINK HAD HUMAN EMOTIONS. SEABISCUIT KNEW THE PEOPLE WHO WERE AROUND HIM KNEW THEY HAD HIS BEST INTEREST AT HEART, AND HE RETURNED THE FAVOR BY HIS STUNNING ACCOMPLISHMENTS. DEBSTE4@AOL.COM
STEVEN GOLIN <DEBSTE4@AOL.COM>
EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 14:14:39 (EST)
After reading your wonderful book a year ago, I found an interview of yours where you said that the day you found out Seabiscuit hit #1 on the NYTimes best seller list, you felt the presence of Howard, Smith, Pollard and Seabiscuit in the room with you...can you tell me where that is and/or where I can find the quote? I've shared your book with family and friends and they would enjoy that insight as well Thanks
Cathy Schmidt <schmidtdc@hotmail.com>
USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 10:52:32 (EST)
Ms. Hillenbrand: Thank you for writing the story of Seabiscuit. I'm sure you've heard this many times before, but it found it to be an amazing, extraordinary, breathtaking story. I'm not a horse person, but I found myself holding my breath during the second-by-second recreation of the races, gasping when reading about how the jockeys would keep their weight down, and my heart thumping at many other moments in the book. I appreciate the thousands of hours of research and interviews you put into writing this. Good luck on the movie. I really, really hopes it lives up to the incredible book you wrote.
Shuva Rahim <shuva29@msn.com>
Springfield, OH USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 09:01:17 (EST)
I just wanted to let you know that we are using your book Seabiscuit for our book discussion group next month. I will update you on the responses. Your book has also been mentioned on a local talk show that I listen to on my way to work. And of course, we read your interview in the Boston Globe recently. Good luck.
Jean <SLGJEG4@attbi.com>
Bridgewater, MA USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 08:58:44 (EST)
"This horse is sleping" :') ..who put that sign up ? .. a white lawn jocky perhaps ~lol ? good luck on the Film, look forward to viewing it next year :')
;') <equus714@hotmail.com>
USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 03:33:05 (EST)
Hi I collect old photographss and found a collection of some pictures of Seabiscuit taken on Ridgewood ranch at the time of his retirement that you might be interested in using in your book. Check out: http://www.concentric.net/~jbdkrm/seabiscuit.html Enjoy! jb
John Bosko <jbdkrm@concentric.net>
USA - Friday, November 08, 2002 at 02:40:21 (EST)
I bought and read Seabuscuit as soon as it came out. After lending it to friends, including one, who would not return it, I bought a new copy and just re-read it. You tell an amazing story of American life, and the life of an amazing horse in a way that, to this day overwhelms me emotionally--to the point that I can get teary eyed thinking about it. I feel as though the characters are my best friends and family. Your story of Seabuscuit has given me an escape hatch during a particularly dark period in my own life, and for that I am eternally grateful. Few stories have been able to lift me out of my own situation, and into the lives of these amazing animals and people of our not too distant past. I hope you know that your book hits home with not only horse people like me, but also my fiance, who can barely tell the difference between "the end that kicks and the end that eats." He's finishing the book on an airplane right now as I write this. I'm worried, however, about the upcoming movie. I'm very worried that it will ruin the wonderful story and lessons you have painted for us. I'm tempted not to see it, but curiosity will get the best of me. Best wishes to you for abundant health and the stamina to tell us another amazing story. Your fans are eagerly awaiting. Kind regards, Kim
Kim H.
Alexandria, VA USA - Thursday, November 07, 2002 at 22:16:45 (EST)
Dear Laura, I have no originals or photos but I would love to know when & where the compilation of Seabiscuit's photos can be purchased. Thank you.
Marilyn G <Marilguad@AOL.com>
Rochester, NY USA - Thursday, November 07, 2002 at 20:15:45 (EST)
My daughter gave me your book to read and I absolutely loved it. Had never read about racing and was amazed at the lifestyle. Seabiscuit's story needed to be told and I am so glad it was by you. You have a wonderful style. The movie should be great because your book was so full of extraordinary characters.
Penny <penny@briggselectric.com>
mission viejo, ca USA - Thursday, November 07, 2002 at 20:01:38 (EST)
What can one say that hasn't been said by your other readers - love love love this book - so sorry it had to end - write more Laura - you are terrific at it.......
deb ryan <debryan@bonellryan.com>
new york, ny USA - Thursday, November 07, 2002 at 18:16:21 (EST)
Dear Laura, I have an original winner's circle photo of The Matchrace between Seabiscuit vs. War Admiral 1938 Pimlico. It is a beautiful black & white collage, very historical.... found in an old box. Perhaps the director of the movie would like to use it as a prop? It is for sale to anyone interested. Belongs to a friend of mine who gallops horses at Calder. He needs a car badly. Lives in a trailer, has a little dog, is a wonderful person. Perhaps Seabiscuit could help him. I want nothing, just to help him. I truely believe that you, Laura, just might change Racing in America today through your brilliant book, tapes, and movie. How we thank you and treasure your talent. If only you would someday write a book on Affirmed, who never received the credit he was due. Adored The Book so much. There is medication for cronic fatigue syndrome............ Just ask any Jockey. It's A BIG HORSE. Thankfully Yours, Karla Wolfson 954-868-2659 cell.
Karla Wolfson <mdwracing@aol.com>
S.W. Ranches, FL USA - Thursday, November 07, 2002 at 16:52:28 (EST)
FROM THE AUTHOR: I'm happy to announce that I am now assembling photographs for a special illustrated edition of Seabiscuit: An American Legend, to be released in June, 2003, shortly before the movie. The book will be in 8x10 format, with the original text in full, plus 75-100 photographs. I'd love to hear from anyone out there who has old photographs of Seabiscuit or his handlers. I am not looking for professionally-made shots, such as those found on ebay, but any private shots taken by fans of the horse, shots not in public circulation. If anyone has anything, please post a message on this site, along with your e-mail address, and we'll contact you. Thanks to all my readers!
Laura Hillenbrand
Washington, DC USA - Thursday, November 07, 2002 at 12:34:25 (EST)
Your book was great just as the articles you write for EQUUS. I was 12 years old when Seabiscuit beat War Admiral. I remember hearing the race on radio and the following week watching it on Movietone News. Filming is going on this week at Keeneland.
Bill Ramsey <ramsey@one.net>
Covington, KY USA - Wednesday, November 06, 2002 at 20:31:49 (EST)
My daughter, who just turned 16, has wanted to be a jockey for several years. I dreaded it, tried everything to stop it, and finally gave in to the inevitable. She has won many pony races and is now in her first race on Friday at Laurel. Luckily, the trainer she gallops for,Eddie Gaudet, believes in her and has been helping to train her, keeping her as safe as he can. Both my husband and I read your book to try and understand her passion a little better and it opened up an entirely new world to us. It has been such a great book for so many reasons. No one outside the racing industry could understand this child and her passion, including her own family. You have helped to open a window into her sole for us and I thank you.
Sue Fitzpatrick <sixfitz@comcast.net>
n.potomac, md USA - Wednesday, November 06, 2002 at 19:47:15 (EST)
Ms. Hillenbrand, I am hosting our bookclub this next week, and we are discussing your book Seabiscuit. I feel fortunate to be the one having Seabiscuit as my selection since I so enjoyed reading each and every page. Could you possibly refer me to a site where I might obtain more information on you personally to share with the group? We are always interested in an author's backgroud and what has led to their choosing their subject matter, etc. and early years before becoming so famous. Any help you can give will be GREATLY appreciated. Thank you.
sally <allens2@adelphia.net>
Seal Beach, ca USA - Wednesday, November 06, 2002 at 18:36:44 (EST)
I had never heard about Seabiscuit until I read your book,and I was astonished by the story. Unfortunately it was translated into Dutch very poorly and that's why I'll never buy the book for someone else. I was touched by the history and by the way it was written down, but the translation is really very disturbing. The translator speaks about a four-year-old foal, that is trotting as hard as he can. Well, to me a four year old is not a foal anymore, and a race horse runs, it doesn't trot. Well, perhaps I'll buy the book in English, because it is such a wonderful story!
patti <ppbn@freeler.nl>
Holland - Wednesday, November 06, 2002 at 14:09:21 (EST)
I've never watched a horse race in my life and have always been pretty ambivalent about horses themselves, could basically take them or leave them - so I don't even know why I borrowed Seabiscuit from my library - but oh I'm so glad I did I am absolutely captivated and enthralled! I am trying so hard to read it straight through (as I always, always do) but with yours I keep skipping backwards and forwards to the notes and the index (brilliantly referenced I might add!) and getting detoured to find out "if, when, how or what" - but then I don't want to read out of context and spoil the excitement! I've been reading for hours every night until my eyes almost drop out with tiredness - I'm just up to where Pollard's been suspended (SO UNJUST!!!) and SB's being scratched from his potential clashes with War Admiral. It's nail biting stuff -especially when you consider its 'only' about a horse (ie not a 'proper' horror story or the secrets of real life terrorists etc) - but oh my gosh, I'm finding it more intriguing, suspenseful and fascinating than anything in that genre! I'm even wondering if I can take tomorrow off work 'cos I'm sure I'm going to get to the part tonight where Seabiscuit finally races War Admiral for the first time and I will absolutely not be able to put the book down at the point. I have the utmost admiration and respect for Howard and Smith and as for Seabiscuit himself - words fail me ... unlike you, whose brilliant craft as a storyteller and meticulous research has given me the first-ever knowledge of this wonderful horse and his story. For those who already knew of him, I'm sure they too are delighted that Seabiscuit lives again - with all his heart, quirks, courage, triumphs and disappointments - through your superb book. I read four books a week - and have done for the past 37 years! - but I've never been 'converted' so enthusiastically and thoroughly from a so-so interest in a book's theme, story and characters to passion. Like Seabiscuit himself, your book is unique, utterly unforgettable - and a true blessing.
Dorothy
Johannesburg, South Africa - Wednesday, November 06, 2002 at 05:45:54 (EST)
I really enjoyed your book. I have followed Thoroughbred racing most of my life and have visited the horse country around Lexington, KY several times. I am so excited to learn that one of my favorite jockeys, Gary Stevens is going to be in the movie, I will look forward to seeing it. Thanks again for writing such a wonderful book.
Bea
AL USA - Wednesday, November 06, 2002 at 03:37:52 (EST)
Hello Laura. Just to say 'thank you' for a marvellous book. 'Seabiscuit' was the best story I have read in such a long time. I particularly liked your descriptions of the actual races - you felt as though you were there and reading faster and faster as the pace quickened. Like many who have added to your guest book, I look forward to the film and the documentary. Thanks, Carolyn.
Carolyn Gibbon
USA - Tuesday, November 05, 2002 at 15:59:37 (EST)
WOW. Brilliant book! As a bored 14 year old i found it a welcome change to JK Rowling and other authors who aim at my age. You have spurred me on to read more 'unlikely' books in my library that i wouldn't have touched before thank you for opening a new world of reading possiblities for me!
Kat <brilllass@hotmail.com>
England - Tuesday, November 05, 2002 at 15:31:15 (EST)
I was visiting my sister in June and started reading her copy of Seabiscuit. I couldn't put it down. I love the incredible detail you portrayed the world during the period he raced. The development of each character who were involved in this amazing partnership was excellent. I will be an unpaid extra in the Keeneland Nov 17 filming and am so excited about being there and glad I have already read your book to make it that much more meaningful. Thank you for such a fantastic book! Due to the comments in the guestbook about strangers and marketers writing to the posters, I better not include my e-mail address. Otherwise, I would love to hear from you.
Priscilla Schmidt
Cincinnati, OH USA - Tuesday, November 05, 2002 at 13:09:41 (EST)
I loved your book. The translation in french wasn't very good. I'm a tv producer who works with Equidia which is a french tv channel about horses. I have many projects of documentary films about racing history in Europe. Your book will help me. I hope the movie will be show in France !!!
Cyrille Testelin <cyrille.testelin@ouestaudiovisuel.fr>
Paris, France - Tuesday, November 05, 2002 at 06:29:48 (EST)
I would suggest that you *not* try so hard to have _Seabiscuit_ recognized as an Oprah book. That would likely turn away the readers of truly good writing (as opposed to readers of books like Danielle Steel's and other grocery store junk). Readers of truly good writing consider Oprah's list a don't-bother-reading list. I've read some of the Oprah books and was unhappy with the quality. But _Seabiscuit_ is truly good writing that will be dismissed by the people who, in my opinion, would appreciate it most for its quality and not only for a "cute animal story."
Elizabeth
USA - Monday, November 04, 2002 at 17:33:37 (EST)
Dear Ms. Hillenbrand, I wanted to know if I might attain more information on one of the notes you had on Chapter 1, page 4 on Charles Howard in the Cavalry. The note on page 350 reads: cavalry: Michael C. Howard, telephone interview, January 18, 1997. I am doing a thesis for my senior year at Brandeis University on how the horse has been imagined in the 20th Century, and your book has thus far been invaluable to me in my research, and as well it has been an absolute pleasure to read. I wanted to learn more about how Howard chose to be in the Cavalry out of all the military fields he might have joined. How might I find more information on this telephone interview noted in your book? Most sincerely, Jessica Kern
Jessica Kern <jkern@brandeis.edu>
Waltham, MA USA - Sunday, November 03, 2002 at 22:15:40 (EST)
Dear Laura Hillenbrand, Your wonderfully researched and beautifully written book "SEABISCUIT" has to be one of the best books I have had the pleasure to read. As a working and rodeo cowboy in my younger years I had a love/hate relationship with hosses. You introduced me to a whole new medium for which I am grateful. I will pass this book on to my youngest daughter who as a little girl had one of the biggest collections of horses (toy) anyone could imagine. I know she will love reading it as much as I did. Thanks again!
Dennis Troy
- Sunday, November 03, 2002 at 21:57:02 (EST)
Enjoyed your wonderfully researched and beautifully written book "Seabiscuit". It has given me a perspective on a medium of which I knew virtually nothing. As a working and rodeo cowboy in younger years my love/hate relationship with horses was pretty much confined to quarter horses and broom tails. Thanks for one of the finest books I have read. I will pass this on to my youngest daughter as her love for horses is greater than mine. I sincerely do not think she can enjoy it any more than I did. Thanks again.
Dennis Troy
USA - Sunday, November 03, 2002 at 21:34:37 (EST)
I just finished watching the last fifteen minutes of your BookTV appearance. I could kick myself for not checking the C-Span schedule earlier! It was a pleasure seeing the author of such an outstanding book. I was enraptured by your book and my husband is becoming enraptured as he is happily reading "Seabiscuit" now. You mentioned (on BookTV) about having "vertigo." Since we didn't see the whole program and don't know what illness you may have, we can only fervantly hope that as of this date you're recovering. When I was a kid I spent many happy afternoons at Santa Anita with my horse-playing Grandmother. All the movie stars! I was bug-eyed seeing Betty Grable and Judy Garland. Many years later I was at Hollywood Park and sat just in front of Fred Astaire. Big thrills. A million thank-you's for your monumentally wonderful work and looking forward to the movie.
Susan McGuire <siouxnr@cs.com>
Palos Verdes Estates, CA USA - Sunday, November 03, 2002 at 04:51:41 (EST)
Dear Laura, My husband Michael and I have just returned from an afternoon and evening at Ridgewood Ranch in Willits, where we enjoyed a tour, barbeque, and premiere of the PBS documentary of 'Seabiscuit'. This was a long awaited opportunity to put all the pieces together of the current phenomenom that is Seabiscuit. We are fortunate to live on property adjacent to Walker Lake, and after sharing your wonderful book last year, like to imagine that Seabiscuit actually walked this land. My husband discovered a good sized spring on our land, with an old spring box, and he likes to think that Seabiscuit once drank here! The movie tonight was wonderful with so much old footage, but I've got to tell you that nothing put me right into the moment, right into the race like the words you put down on paper in your book! So thank you.
Colleen Donovan-Batson <mydwyfe@mindspring.com>
willits, CA USA - Sunday, November 03, 2002 at 00:40:45 (EST)
I can't wait to start reading your book! My wife and I are going to be an extra in the Keenland shoot. We are excited and honored to be apart of this great story. Thanks in advance for your book.
Chris & Angie Thompson <mrtoyota9867@hotmail.com>
Georgetown, Ky USA - Saturday, November 02, 2002 at 11:51:25 (EST)
Just finished the book. Fantastic! As a horse lover and one who always roots for the underdog, I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. Great Job. Can't wait for the movie.
Sue Champa <soopeyc@verizonmail.com>
Queens, NY USA - Friday, November 01, 2002 at 19:41:10 (EST)
Thanks to your book, Laura, I've been quietly celebrating the fact that today is the 64th anniversary of Seabiscuit beating War Admiral at Pimlico. Happy Anniversary!
Chuck Connerly <cconnerl@coss.fsu.edu>
Tallahassee, FL USA - Friday, November 01, 2002 at 17:31:51 (EST)
As both an avid reader and thoroughbred racing fan, I must thank you for the most fascinating book I have ever read! I was astounded by your attentive, colorful descriptions of horse, man, and 1930's America. I am excited to have the opportunity to experience some of that era by seving as an spectator extra during filming at Keeneland this month. I'll have to pinch myself that day: my favorite racetrack filming race scenes from my favorite book! Thank you again for the joy you've brought to many with your talent.
Kim Temple
Dayton, OH USA - Friday, November 01, 2002 at 14:45:19 (EST)
Ever since I read this eloquently written book I hoped there would be a movie that could take it off the pages and bring this story to the screen. I don't know what drove me to search for a way to somehow be a part of that, but finally today I found my way to that opportunity. I look forward to being a part of reliving and retelling a story about the COURAGE, HEART and BEAUTY of a Thoroughbred!
Mary Van Holt <FlyingManeRanch@aol.com>
Laguna Niguel , CA USA - Friday, November 01, 2002 at 13:01:13 (EST)
Hey- great sight- I went to college with M. Christianson- Red Pollard's grandson- "The Cougar was his Grandpappy." He would tell me- If you never met him- He looks just like the great jockey- He tells me he would love to go to the premier and I would like to be the second on your short list- I think I am related to Mussolini!? A next book perhaps?!?! Just kidding- enjoyed the book! He made a rear admiral out of War admiral!!!
David Garr <david.garr@morganstanley.com>
Granby, CT USA - Friday, November 01, 2002 at 11:53:11 (EST)

 
   


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