We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
 >   > 
Horse Heaven | [Jane Smiley]

Horse Heaven

Many astonishing and affecting things happen at the racetrack, and the mysterious universe of horse racing, passionate, cold-hearted, pure, corrupt, is woven into a marvelous tapestry of joy and love, chicanery, folly, greed, and reckless courage. Spanning two years on the circuit, from Kentucky and California to New York and Paris, Horse Heaven, puts us among trainers, nervey jockeys, billionaire breeders, and restless track wives.
Regular Price:$29.37
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

Many astonishing and affecting things happen at the racetrack, and the mysterious universe of horse racing, passionate, cold-hearted, pure, corrupt, is woven into a marvelous tapestry of joy and love, chicanery, folly, greed, and reckless courage. Spanning two years on the circuit, from Kentucky and California to New York and Paris, Horse Heaven, puts us among trainers, nervey jockeys, billionaire breeders, and restless track wives.

©2000 Jane Smiley; (P)2001 Chivers Audio Books

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (111 )
5 star
 (51)
4 star
 (23)
3 star
 (18)
2 star
 (11)
1 star
 (8)
Overall
3.9 (52 )
5 star
 (27)
4 star
 (8)
3 star
 (6)
2 star
 (5)
1 star
 (6)
Story
3.8 (52 )
5 star
 (22)
4 star
 (12)
3 star
 (7)
2 star
 (6)
1 star
 (5)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    DP Oakland, CA United States 09-19-07
    DP Oakland, CA United States 09-19-07 Member Since 2006

    Dog lover

    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "Mismatch between reader and author"

    I am usually very happy with the voice and reading style chosen to represent the narrator's voice, but in the case of Horse Heaven, I was not. I know this book well and love it, and perhaps that is why I was so disappointed with this reader, Shelley Thompson. Her accent, the rhythm of her speech, her obvious lack of knowledge about horses, all combined to make it impossible for me to listen to this book beyond the first half hour or so. She emphasizes the wrong things in phrases well-known by horse people and it is very jarring. I would not recommend this book to anyone, not to someone who knows this book, or someone who does not know this book. Go and read the book yourself. It is a masterpiece, in my opinion the best thing that Jane Smiley has written to date. Skip this audiobook. The lowest rating I could give was 1 star.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie Delio Arlington, TX United States 03-21-07
    Julie Delio Arlington, TX United States 03-21-07 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    40
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "I wish I could review book and narrator separately"

    The book is very enjoyable -- and I'm only 1/2 finished. But the narrator can be quite distracting. Doesn't anyone "proof-listen" these? How can a professional narrator pronounce khaki "cocky" -- let alone the mangling of anything that's not strictly Anglo Saxon??? It took me a while to realize where/what "La Joe La" is. Despite this, I'm loving the book. In summary, 5 stars for the book and 2 stars for the narration, but the book outshines the puzzling pronunciation.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 08-08-06 Member Since 2014

    miriam24

    HELPFUL VOTES
    38
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Oh! Wait, I'm not done!"

    One more thing about reader Shelley Thompson! How does someone get to be an audiobook reader without knowing how to pronounce "pico de gallo," "La Jolla," or "Maryland"?

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rhonda Des Moines, WA, USA 02-02-08
    Rhonda Des Moines, WA, USA 02-02-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Loved it!!!"

    I thought this book was most exceptional. I keep wanting to listen to each part over and over for more intense visuals. This book is one of my favorite. Major kudos to Smiley as I feel she has given a wonderful gift to my imagination.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Wendy 03-28-06
    Wendy 03-28-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Excellent listen."

    It is difficult to restrain the amount of praise this book deserves. This is, in my opinion, the finest of this award-winning author's novels. It is amusing, touching and engrossing. Not only for those who are intrigued by the world of thoroughbred racing, the character development is extraordinary and the individuals as well as the animals are finely drawn. The way the author makes you like and understand her characters is the more surprising as the cast is quite a large one. This is one of those tales you never want to end, and I can't recommend it enough.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shane 08-19-13
    Shane 08-19-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    23
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Tangents and filler"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I believe about 30% of the book could have been cut and kept the story moving in a much better and more realistic way. The haphazard insertion of the dog's point of view as well as the side step of an Irish shopping trip did nothing to maintain or evolve the story. It was as if the author merely had some extra material, and chose to stuff it in to fill pages.


    What could Jane Smiley have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Stick to 3-4 main characters and actually write about them rather than use them as a fulcrum to launch into shallow 'thoughts' about a few people with whom then come in contact.

    When she wrote about the trainers, she did a good job. When she wrote about the fringe, she seemed to do it for her own amusement, rather than for the story.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The repeated mispronunciation of common words is completely unacceptable in a professional reading.

    La Jolla... come on... she isn't in kindergarten.

    The recording editor should be fired.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Absolutely not.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rob Marina Del Rey, CA, United States 07-12-13
    Rob Marina Del Rey, CA, United States 07-12-13 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    30
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "not a book about horse racing"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    omg what a pile of manure. i see a book with a jock belly down and racing riding and the book i receive is a woman romanticizing about a foal and polite little stories. to be honest my only recollection of this book was I GOT RIPPED OFF. this is my first written review in 13 years on Audible. biggest stinker in my 300+ collection of audio books.


    Has Horse Heaven turned you off from other books in this genre?

    I will be more careful next time and not trust a cool cover.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Sappy little stories nothing to do with horse racing.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Anger cause i got ripped off for a book credit. False advertising.


    Any additional comments?

    The front cover of the book should be of a nice old woman with a foal and maybe a mare in a distant field. This book had nothing to do with horse racing.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amanda Sydney NSW, Australia 08-05-12
    Amanda Sydney NSW, Australia 08-05-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Was put off by previous reviews but loved it"

    I was put off by previous reviews where they stated that the narrator mispronounced a lot of the words. As I am not an America, I didn't know what the real pronunciation should be of various place names so it did not bother me. I found the narrator lively and easy to listen to.

    I loved the story immensely, particularly how the animals were included as characters bit not overly anthropomorphised.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rhonda Springtown, TX, United States 12-10-11
    Rhonda Springtown, TX, United States 12-10-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great for horse people."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Really got into a real horse person's mind. Some misses on horse terminology, but only a few. Wonderful story line. Yes, I would and have recommended this book.


    What other book might you compare Horse Heaven to and why?

    Seabiscuit


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It made you laugh and cry. I own and love horses and it captured the feelings I have everyday.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Aptos, CA, United States 12-01-11
    Jennifer Aptos, CA, United States 12-01-11 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    41
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "LOVED IT!"

    This book was fantastic!! I thought it was one of the best reads I've had in a while. Shelley Thompson was very entertaining to listen to and she made each and every character come to life. There were a few mis-pronunciations, but all in all, she did a fantastic job. I, being a huge horse lover, was able to identify with and understand the contents of the different stories told for each character. One of my favorite characters was Joy Gorham and her horse Mr. T. I can totally relate to her story. A must read for any horse person who enjoys listening to the animals' point of view. Loved it!!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 21 results PREVIOUS123NEXT

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.