Study Guide

Luca Pantoni in The Art of Racing in the Rain

By Garth Stein

Luca Pantoni

The Fairy Godfather

Even though Luca Pantoni's role in the book is brief, it's important: this guy is literally a lifesaver.

At first, his inclusion in the story seems like a throwaway. He comes over for dinner one night while Eve's alive, and then shows up almost at the end of everything, a year or so after Eve's death. His reappearance is like that of a sweater that was stuffed in the back of your closet that you forgot you owned: unexpected but enjoyable.

So he shows up out of the blue to see Denny, but then he also offers Denny a posh job test-driving Ferraris for rich Italian car owners who want to drive really fast in their free time.

That's like winning the lottery of racing-related jobs, and the fact that Luca shows up when he does is nothing short of magical. Which leaves us wondering, is Luca Pantoni even real?