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The Hearts of Horses: A Novel Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Hearts of Horses: A Novel, by Molly Gloss Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,774 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Molly Gloss Narrator: Renée Raudman Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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In the winter of 1917, a big-boned young woman shows up at George Bliss’ doorstep. She’s looking for a job breaking horses, and he hires her on. Many of his regular hands are off fighting the war, and he glimpses, beneath her showy rodeo garb, a shy but strong-willed girl with a serious knowledge of horses.

So begins the irresistible tale of nineteen-year-old Martha Lessen, a female horse whisperer trying to make a go of it in a man’s world. It was thought that the only way to break a horse was to buck the wild out of it, and broken ribs and tough falls just went with the job. But over several long, hard winter months, many of the townsfolk in this remote county of eastern Oregon witness Martha’s way of talking in low, sweet tones to horses believed beyond repair—and getting miraculous, almost immediate results—and she thereby earns a place of respect in the community.

Along the way, Martha helps a family save their horses when their wagon slides into a ravine. She gentles a horse for a dying man—a last gift to his young son. She clashes with a hired hand who is abusing horses in unspeakable ways. Soon, despite her best efforts to remain aloof and detached, she comes to feel enveloped by a sense of community and family that she’s never had before.

With the elegant sweetness of Plainsong and a pitch-perfect sense of western life reminiscent of Annie Dillard, The Hearts of Horses is a remarkable story about how people and animals make connections and touch each other’s lives in the most unexpected and profound ways.

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Listener Reviews

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Review by Andrea | 2/14/2014

    " This lovely, quiet story is moving and transporting. I listened to it on CD and the reader has a mesmerizing quality to her reading. A nice book for anyone interested in "gentling horses" instead of "bronco-busting" or in learning a bit about Oregon history. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Review by Kyra | 2/3/2014

    " I liked this book very much. It is extremely low key and somehow soothing, even though death and violence and tragedy occur. If you love horses and don't mind a steady narrative, this is a very good read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Review by Diane Garland | 1/27/2014

    " I really enjoyed this book. Martha, the main character is a strong, hardworking woman who breaks horses for a living--not a normal job for a woman in 1917, but was becoming more and more common with the onset of the war. The stories of the neighbors who hire her are both heartwarming and heartbreaking; they help to define the hardness of pioneering life and how war can impact a small community. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Review by Laura Christoffersen | 1/17/2014

    " Very good book. Quite interesting view of women, prejudice, etc. I liked it. "

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About the Author

Molly Gloss is the bestselling author The Hearts of Horses, The Jump-Off Creek, winner of both the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award and the Oregon Book Award, The Dazzle of Day, winner of the PEN Center West Fiction Prize, and Wild Life, winner of the James Tiptree Jr. Award.

About the Narrator

Renée Raudman is an actor and multi-award-winning audiobook narrator. She has performed on film, television, radio, and on stage and can also be heard in several video games and hundreds of television and radio voice-overs.