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The Whip | [Karen Kondazian]

The Whip

The Whip is inspired by the true story of Charlotte "Charley" Parkhurst (1812-1879) who lived most of her extraordinary life as a man. As a young woman in Rhode Island, she fell in love with a runaway slave and had his child. The destruction of her family drove her west to California, dressed as a man, to track the killer. Charley became a renowned stagecoach driver for Wells Fargo, during the renowned California 'gold rush' days. She killed a famous outlaw, had a secret love affair, and lived with a housekeeper who, unaware of her true sex, fell in love with her.
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Publisher's Summary

  • Best Western, 2013 International Book Awards
  • 2013 National Indie Excellence Awards winner, Western fiction category
  • Gold Prize in Historical Fiction & Best Western Fiction - 2013 Global Ebook Awards
  • Award-Winner in the 'Fiction: Historical' category of The 2012 USA Best Book Awards

The Whip is a multi-award winning novel inspired by the true story of Charlotte "Charley" Parkhurst (1812-1879) who lived most of her extraordinary life as a man in the Old West.

As a young woman in Rhode Island, she fell in love with a runaway slave and had his child. He was lynched, her baby killed. The destruction of her family drove her west to California, dressed as a man, to track the killer.

Charley became a renowned stagecoach driver for Wells Fargo. She killed a famous outlaw, had a secret love affair, and lived with a housekeeper who, unaware of her true sex, fell in love with her.

Charley was the first known woman to vote in America in 1868 (as a man). Her grave lies in Watsonville, California.

©2012 Karen Kondazian (P)2012 Karen Kondazian

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (72 )
5 star
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4.1 (67 )
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Story
4.3 (68 )
5 star
 (42)
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 (15)
3 star
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    sherlock Los Feliz, ca, United States 08-03-13
    sherlock Los Feliz, ca, United States 08-03-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "MUST LISTEN"
    Where does The Whip rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This by far, is my favorite. It's not only true, but an exciting story. Robin Weigert is brilliant. The only actress who could have narrated this book, Robin is very, very brilliant. Robin is incredibly convincing with each character and each characters voices. I wish to see this in a movie but only if Robin plays Charlie Parkhurst.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It was based on a true story. To her ownself she was true. From not allowing the color of a man's skin or his station enter her decision to fall for the man she loved.


    What does Robin Weigert bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Robin does each voice brilliantly. Not just good but committed to a level that one usually doesn't get to experience. Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant. The ONLY actress who could have performed these characters so well. Robin hits a level of excellence very much appreciated by this listener.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Several. When Tonia acts on her impulse to even the score for Charlie. When Charlie makes her decision to just, change after being kicked by the horse. When Charlie's old friend returns. Also, when Sugar Foot's identity was revealed to her.


    Any additional comments?

    I appreciated the obituaries at the end. The acknowledgement for this brave woman who was unofficially "the Whip" of the West. Also to know that she was probably the first woman to vote in the United States. I would like to see this and Charlie Parkhurst honored at the Western Museum in Los Angeles. The have honored the buffalo girls but this story is unique and important.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charlena Indian Head, MD, United States 03-31-13
    Charlena Indian Head, MD, United States 03-31-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    11
    4
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    "I LOVED THIS BOOK!"

    Wonderful story...wonderful performance. I didn't want it to end. The story of Charlie Parkhurst was one that I had not heard of before. The book was a wonderful history lesson embellished by a very creative author. Excellent performance by Robin Weigert.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ann Pleasanton, ca, United States 02-24-13
    Ann Pleasanton, ca, United States 02-24-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
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    5
    5
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    "Incredible story, incredible performance"
    What made the experience of listening to The Whip the most enjoyable?

    The narrator, Robin Weigert, did a wonderful job developing her characters, with individual voices for each one. Not only did she carefully choose her voices, she was consistent, never faltered, and the children voices aged appropriately. Not only is the narrator excellent, the story was well-written, and the topic was very interesting.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The main character carried the story magnificently.


    What about Robin Weigert’s performance did you like?

    She inhabits her characters faultlessly. She is so versatile... she believeable portrayed young children, black men, crusty stagecoach drivers, an Italian woman, and a cockney bandit. Each was fantastic.


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

    yes!


    Any additional comments?

    This collaboration of author, narrator, and director created a believable, engaging audiobook. I listen to alot of them, and this one is one of the few which I really couldn't wait to get back into, whenever I had to stop listening.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    RueRue Orange County, CA 02-25-14
    RueRue Orange County, CA 02-25-14 Member Since 2013

    RueRue

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    124
    119
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    Story
    "A great narrator"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    It was like listening to a play ! The narrator did a fantastic job of creating characters with her voice.


    Would you recommend The Whip to your friends? Why or why not?

    I found some of the plot to be predicable, but the unique character made it an interesting story. Not sure if this would be of interest to everyone. It's not quite a Western, not quite a historical drama, not quite a romance, although there are elements of all of these genres.


    Have you listened to any of Robin Weigert’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I believe this her only audio performance. I would definitely listen to others.


    Was The Whip worth the listening time?

    Yes.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kate+Mitchell Powell Portland, OR, United States 12-25-13
    Kate+Mitchell Powell Portland, OR, United States 12-25-13 Member Since 2005

    I listen to audio books while working.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Too too sad for me to finish, so a personal review"

    Narrator is great, and the story may be great -- I made it about halfway through but the violence is so sad and horrible that I could not finish the book. I can handle some violence, and can take sadness in books, but this one was too much. The writer is good, so if you can handle it, great.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Reisterstown, MD, United States 12-27-13
    Amazon Customer Reisterstown, MD, United States 12-27-13 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    43
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    "An exciting period tale!"

    That the book is based on an actual person makes it the more interesting. The period descriptions and characters were delightful. I could feel the sorrow and excitement. And was drawn into Charlies struggles.

    What an amazing life she led!

    I would definitely recommend this to a friend.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Molly Charleston, SC, United States 10-31-13
    Molly Charleston, SC, United States 10-31-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    73
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    35
    8
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    "Entertaining Historical Fiction"

    I love reading about this time period and found the story engaging. I also thought the narrator did a really great job.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Little Rock, AR, United States 04-22-14
    Susan Little Rock, AR, United States 04-22-14 Member Since 2009
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    18
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    8
    7
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    "Great Story and Excellent Narration"

    I'm a fan of historical novels and this one was no disappointment. The story was poignant and had me doing a lot of thinking about how I could have lived in that period of time. Robin Weigert was excellent doing the narration. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandee White Cloud, MI, United States 09-22-14
    Sandee White Cloud, MI, United States 09-22-14 Member Since 2007

    Tell us about yourself! I am addicted to Audio Books I read them all the time in the car, doing dishes, ironing, What ever.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    192
    18
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    2
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    "Very Good Story, Very Good narration."

    The review I read where right. Very good story. I wonder how many women were able to survive life in the old west in similar ways. Made me appreciate my small concessions in business and life.
    She really was a smart character. Loved the narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L. Hockensmith Yorba Linda 05-06-14
    L. Hockensmith Yorba Linda 05-06-14 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    47
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    42
    28
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    3
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    "Not for Non-Fictions Readers"
    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The narrator was irritating and shrill. It reminded me of one of the worst books I've downloaded (The Room) with children voices so high and loud I had to adjust audio settings. The narrator was so annoying I could not listen at bed-time and had to be quick on the volume control while in the car.


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

    I'm a fan of historic docu-dramas like "Roots," "The Winds of War," and "Of Captains and Kings, " but this book was just hokey. Unbelievable dialog and circumstances. Overly dramatic, non-relavent, romantic stuff.


    Any additional comments?

    There was a spark of interest when some California history was cited. But the book degraded back to a pulp, romance novel.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
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