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Summary

Joy and heartbreak combine in this bittersweet tale of a champion greyhound’s journey through life – and from owner to owner…“The sack wasn't just drifting gently along like everything else, it was turning of its own accord. There was definitely something inside it, struggling against the side of the plastic bag, kicking at it, squeaking and squealing in terror. He had no idea what it might be, only that it was alive and in danger of drowning.” When Patrick saves a litter of greyhound puppies from the canal, he can’t bear to hand them all over to the RSPCA.

He pleads with his parents: couldn’t he just keep one of them? But nothing will convince them and Patrick cries himself to sleep – only to be woken by a greyhound puppy licking his face! Patrick christens his puppy Best Mate, and that’s what he becomes. Patrick’s favourite thing is to watch Best Mate running at full stretch on the heath, a speeding bullet, a cheetah-dog. Until one day Best Mate is kidnapped by a greyhound trainer, and begins a new life as a champion race dog. Suzie, the greyhound trainer’s step-daughter, loves Best Mate on first sight and gives him a new name, Bright Eyes. But what will happen when he can’t run anymore?

©2011 Michael Morpurgo (P)2011 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

What members say

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Wonderful

Fistly it showed the plight of many unwanted puppies and a young boy risking his life to save them. It showed the ups and downs of a greyhounds life. Being used as a commodity in racing till the end but also showing how these beautiful dogs can be rehomed and loved by anyone

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • David
  • Twickenham, United Kingdom
  • 20-12-12

Jeannie's review

I’m Jeannie age 9 and I read a Michael Morpurgo book called Born to Run, published by Harper Collins.



The story is based on a dogs life shown through dogs eyes. The story moves around to different parts of England. The story takes place here and now over 5 years.



The main character is the dog. He is a Greyhound who can run really fast. He has different names throughout the story. His first name is Best Mate then it gets changed to Speedo and Bright Eyes. After that it changes to PaddyWack. His name changes because he has three different owners who call him these names as they see him in different ways. At the start of the book he is a puppy, at the end of the book he is an old dog.



My favorite character was the tatty man because he was a dog lover and he was very kind and lonely and generous.



The plot starts with the dog being thrown into the canal. Patrick jumps in the canal to save him. Patrick names him Best Mates and they are best mates.

After that the dog gets stolen by Bossy Boots who sells him on to race on race tracks for money. On the race track his name Speedo. The new owner is a bad man. The dog runs away because he thinks he is going to be killed. He is trying to fins Patrick his first owner but he found by Joe the tatty man finds him. He is a good man but is very lonely. He and Bright Eyes begum good friends but the dog still wants to find Patrick.

Eventually they find Patrick but Patrick has another dog and does not recognize Best Mate so he stays with Joe who calls him Paddywack after his last dog who died.



The best bit of the book was the Tatty van. Joe had made it himself and it was in the shape of a Tatty – in other words a potato. He sold baked potatoes from the van.



I enjoyed the book because it was well written but sometimes it was a little boring. Most of his books are really exciting and you can’t wait to read the next bit. This book was not quite that exciting.





I give Born to Run



4 out of 5.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Amazing

I loved the book because there were lots of twists and I liked the way the dog went to different families and was loved.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Touching

A touching story for all ages. Michael Morpurgo writes so beautifully, you can imagine all the characters so well.

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  • A
  • 05-07-17

Incredible

Was an incredible rolercoaster of emotion and a narrator who did justice to the story by understand the characters and how they feel.

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Morpurgo is just a great story teller

Love all his books that I have read so far. Another great story. Finished this one in one sitting !

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Enjoyable listen 😊

fast paced. really drew me in, wanting to find out what happens. sad in places

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loved it

I cried at the end. would listen to it again for sure. kids and adults

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A good read!! Or listen even

My 5 year old daughter and I enjoyed this book, it kept us intrigued throughout, a good story. Sad at times but definitely worth a read!

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  • Lauren
  • Lisburn, Northern Ireland,UK
  • 27-09-13

Awesome Story Ever....

If you could sum up Born to Run in three words, what would they be?

Adventurous
Understandable
Happy-ending

What did you like best about this story?

Happy ending. True story. What really does happen in the life of a greyhound. The hidden secrets behind greyhound racing. The cruelty of greyhound racing and how much it needs banned. Supporting greyhounds with a heart warming touch between a boy and his dog.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Greyhound puppies being rescued from a canal.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes

Any additional comments?

All animal lovers would love this true story and just how serious greyhound racing is. It's tough on the dogs and their good nature. Greyhound racing puts them in bad health and no freedom and they are exhausted by 3 year old.

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  • N. Vesterberg
  • 07-05-15

Marvellous

Michael Morpurgo is the bed author ever!!! I love his books!! I like audible to, but Michael is much better:)