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Extended Audio Sample Chosen by a Horse: A Memoir Audiobook, by Susan Richards Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (3,413 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Susan Richards Narrator: Lorna Raver Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2007 ISBN: 9781455189885
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The horse Susan Richards chose for rescue wouldn’t be corralled into her waiting trailer. Instead Lay Me Down, a former racehorse with a foal close on her heels, walked right up that ramp and into Susan’s life. This gentle creature—malnourished, plagued by pneumonia and an eye infection—had endured a rough road, but somehow her heart was still open and generous. It seemed fated that she would come into Susan’s paddock and teach her how to embrace the joys of life despite the dangers of living.

An elegant and often heartbreaking tale filled with animal characters as complicated and lively as their human counterparts, this is an inspiring story of courage and hope and the ways in which all love—even an animal’s—has the power to heal.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “An inspirational story of what family means and what the loss of one can do to us—and for us.”

    Boston Globe

  • “Richards’ first book is an engaging, honest and low-key memoir of her love affair with the sweet-natured Lay Me Down and her almost love affair with a fellow named Hank, with many digressions into horse lore as well as life lore. Charming and sensitive descriptions of fiery Georgia; the gallant, lovable old gelding, Hotshot; loyal friend and ‘horsewoman extraordinaire’ Allie; and daily life with animals intersperse with the trials of dating and buying underwear…[A] bracing and likable book, highly recommended for backyard horsewomen and their admirers.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “There’s a certain presence in a horsewoman…a rough edge, a capability, lots of color. Lorna Raver captures all these as she delivers Susan Richards’ personal story…Throughout Richards’ story, Raver delivers authentic humor and emotions.”

    AudioFile

  • “The lessons of love come in many different forms. For Richards, adopting a maltreated horse impacted her life in ways she could not have foreseen.”

    Booklist 

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sally | 2/16/2014

    " You will sob when you read this book. I am not a horse officianado but I am proud of the people who rescue animals. Pet therapy is underated. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joycelyn | 2/9/2014

    " The author is able to convey quite effectively the amazing human/horse bond. She communicates the feeling of connectedness, the ability to achieve inner peace by being close to one of these magnificent animals, and the love and loss inherent in any relationship. This book seemed like the author's attempt at self-therapy, which does not always make the best reading material. Along the lines of Marley and me, but not nearly as light-hearted and playful. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Morgan | 1/28/2014

    " Really good. I have never cried so hard for any book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leila Summers | 1/27/2014

    " This wonderful book is part tragedy and part love story with a message of hope. A maltreated horse literally chooses the author, Susan, one rainy day at the S.P.C.A. This gentle and trusting creature surprisingly ends up being the one who rescues the author. The only thing I wasn't prepared for is the unbearably sad part at the end, which had me in floods of tears while I was reading it, and then again when I was relaying the story to my daughters at a public restaurant! Though I was still a little sad when I finished the book, I was moved and inspired at the same time. Superbly told story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bobbi | 1/25/2014

    " This was such a good book. Wonderful reading for the horse lover. I cried ....It had some sad sad parts but the author really acquired strength from the horse "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Terry | 1/16/2014

    " This was the first book from this author that I read. after reading it, I was compelled to find more from this author. Her books are so well written, that it leaves you hungry for more. It immediately sent me to find more by her. I was amazed by her love and sincere devotion to the love for horses and how that love was her key to surviving an addiction problem. a must read for anyone who loves animals. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Peacefully Evyl | 12/4/2013

    " I liked this book, but it was only about average. I learned a lot about horses, personality quirks, horse care, etc. The story itself was a little bit sappy, but it wasn't horrible. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Carrie | 11/26/2013

    " sad story and author seemed to jump topics and "memories" frequently. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sharon | 11/9/2013

    " If you love horses you will love this book! I cried and cried throughout. I highly recommend this story of amazing love and the ability of a horse who heals his owner. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Claudia Callis | 11/8/2013

    " It is a wonderful and moving story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mimi Detmers | 10/19/2013

    " LOVED THIS BOOK! HORSE OWNERS AND LOVERS PICK THIS BABY UP.. YOU WON'T BE DISAPPOINTED "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Clare | 10/5/2013

    " Couldn't put it down and it made me cry at the end. A must for horse and animal lovers. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tricia | 10/5/2013

    " fantastic..especially for a horse lover. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jenny | 10/4/2013

    " Poignant and wonderful. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Michelle | 9/27/2013

    " I listened to the audio version while on a trip. This was a great story and written well!! I really connected with all aspects of the book; the humor was great as well. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sica | 9/10/2013

    " Based on reality and not set up for a happy ending. I wish that there would have been more discussion about the horses. I was bothered by the description of how one mare was allowed to savage the other crippled mare and the author/owner was not remotely prepared to stop it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Regina | 9/4/2013

    " Wonderful and sad. Bittersweet. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kallejay | 6/5/2013

    " A great story for horsey people and non horsey people too. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Marilyn | 1/23/2013

    " Excellent book. I love horse stories but this is about more than that. It's about how a horse opened up a woman's eyes about herself. I highly recommend this book! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Karen Huber | 8/26/2012

    " This helped me understand how my friends horses communicate. It also conveyed how animals really do have feelings towards each other and humans. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Beverly | 7/2/2012

    " Sometimes life is not fair, but how you deal with life is up to you. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Victoria Stone | 6/5/2012

    " When i started reading this book, i was taken back by the cruelty that the people had done to these horses. I also liked how Susan told that the horses bonded. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carleen | 1/15/2012

    " What can I say? I'm a sucker for a horse book. I loved how real this story was. Maybe not the most gripping of stories, but it did make me chuckle out loud a few times, and it most definitely made me cry. But, as I said, I'm a sucker for horse stories. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brian | 5/31/2011

    " I read this book cover to cover very quickly. I typically only read non-fiction books (well I guess non-memoir). It reminded me of Old Yeller, which is the only book that I read completely when I was a kid. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jenifer | 5/19/2011

    " Funny yet a big tear jerker! I loved her quirky little comments. I was entertained from the minute I picked it up. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Molly | 5/17/2011

    " This was a wonderful story, but sad. I loved Lay Me Down; she was a very sweet horse. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jacy | 5/13/2011

    " Liked the way it was written and I can really relate to the author. Not usually a type of book that I would read. Definitely a sad story, yet also heartwarming and at times slightly humorous. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Andrea | 4/27/2011

    " An amazing story. Be ready with the tissues though! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Tasha | 4/25/2011

    " Testament to the essential connection between animals and humans. A good read for anyone who has grown through a trauma or loved an animal. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Susan | 4/23/2011

    " Beautiful story. Cried in the end..... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brenda | 4/19/2011

    " Fabulous read. Great story full of emotion. I laughed and cried with the author of this memoir. I was riveted throughout the whole story and couldn't wait to read the sequel.
    "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laurie | 4/18/2011

    " If you have ever been beaten down by life or owned a horse, this is the book for you. It is making the rounds in my family among the horsey set along with the 4h moms "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jessica | 4/17/2011

    " Loved this one. Maybe more because I grew up with horses so it really hit that special place in my heart, but even for non-equine people it has a great story. Def some sad parts that had me in tears, but overall worth the read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeanne | 4/12/2011

    " Read someone else's copy. Loved it so much...went out and bought a copy of my own. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sara | 4/12/2011

    " What a sweet story! It was very poignant. Beware: you'll need tissues at the end. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mia | 4/2/2011

    " A moving story about the power and virtues of helping others, and learning from the examples life sends you; even when they arrive as a horse. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bonniemason | 3/29/2011

    " very good & is very sad ending "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shawn | 3/22/2011

    " Great book, but have Kleenex ready. Our animals can teach us so much!! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Myla | 3/12/2011

    " I could relate to the author's grief of losing her horse, just a few months ago I lost my oldest equine friend. Thankfully he went in his sleep and didn't have to be put down. I definitely cried for both our furry friends! "

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About the Author

Susan Richards has a BA in English from the University of Colorado and a master’s degree in social work from Adelphi University. She lives in Olivebridge, New York, and teaches writing at SUNY Ulster and Marist College.

About the Narrator

Lorna Raver, named one of AudioFile magazine’s Best Voices of the Year, has received numerous Audie Award nominations and fifrteen AudioFile Earphones Awards. An experienced stage actress, she has also guest-starred on many top television series and starred in director Sam Raimi’s film Drag Me to Hell. Her numerous audiobook credits include The Age of Innocence, Up from Orchard Street, The Lodger, Selected Readings from the Portable Dorothy Parker, and Diamond Ruby.